QUINTREX YELLOWFIN 6700 HARD TOP REVIEW

A big, bold, plate-alloy sport fisher with plenty of features and serious power from Evinrude’s 225hp E-TEC G2 outboard

Bigger is not always better, but when it comes to the new Quintrex Yellowfin range, we reckon size matters. The extra waterline length and rear cockpit space of the 6700 model over its smaller siblings should see this model become the best seller in the four-strong hardtop range.

QUINTREX YELLOWFIN

OVERVIEW
– Revamped Yellowfin range set to impress
Earlier this year we covered the re-launch of the Quintrex Yellowfin range by Gold Coast based parent company Telwater.

Unveiled to assembled media on the Sunshine Coast were four new hardtop models, expanding the range to eight plate aluminium boats built around four different model sizes – which include 5800, 6200, 6700 and 7400.

We followed up the initial launch report with a review of the entry hardtop model, the 5800. This week we have turned our attention to what is arguably the best, most versatile model of the lot – the 6700 Hardtop powered by an Evinrude 225hp E-Tec G2 two-stroke outboard.

PRICE AND EQUIPMENT
– Exceptional value in base package
With the new Yellowfin range Quintrex is offering its customers a very well appointed base package – to the extent that the boats are virtually ready-to-fish from the outset. You will need to add electronics, and maybe a set of outriggers, but that’s about it.

Choose the base model Evinrude 130hp E-Tec two-stroke outboard (which should be good for a low 30 knot top speed) and the BMT package adds up to less than $70k – and this includes a tandem axle steel trailer with electric hydraulic break-away brakes.

This is wonderful value for a 6.7m heavy duty, full plate alloy sport fishing boat.

It is also only $10k more than the base price for the entry 5800 Yellowfin Hardtop model, and this larger boat has much more than $10k in extra value. It is more seaworthy and comfortable due to its added water-line length and the fishing cockpit is substantially larger.

The 6700 is heavier than the entry model package, but this is kind of academic as you will need a 4WD vehicle or large SUV to tow either of them.

The list of standard features across all of the new Yellowfin models is extensive. The $70k purchase price for the 6700 model buys you hydraulic steering, aluminium hardtop with toughened glass windscreen, sliding safety glass side windows and rocket launcher rod rack, helmsman’s windscreen wiper, vee berth cabin (no cushions) with storage, pedestal helm chairs, trim tabs, tread-plate cockpit floor with non-return self-draining system, wide side decks, transom door with steps and ladder, painted hull, and more.

Fishing features include an underfloor kill tank, deluxe bait board with rod rack, plumbed live bait tank, berley bucket, raw-water deck wash, transducer brackets, outrigger mounting plates, and four standard welded coaming rod holders.

Liken the Yellowfin 6700 to a hamburger with the works; it is loaded with all the good gear.

Having noted the above there are still quite a few options available for boaters to customise their craft.

Our test boat for example had storage boxes under the helm chairs (instead of regular pedestals), vinyl cabin berth cushions and back-rests, carpet to the cabin ceiling and surrounds, and an electric anchor winch.

The test craft was also fitted with a Simrad NSS9 Evo2 GPS chart plotter/fish finder, GME GX750B VHF radio, deluxe tandem axle aluminium trailer with catch ‘n release latch (for fast launch and retrieval), and powered by an Evinrude 225hp E-Tec G2 two-stroke outboard.

The engine upgrade over the base model package adds plenty to the bottom line. With the big Evinrude the test package is priced some $30k higher at $100,790.

Do you need the big power Evinrude? Well no – but the extra power makes the boat exciting to drive and with breath taking acceleration right through the rpm range.

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INTERIOR LAYOUT
– Compact hardtop, spacious cabin, large cockpit
There’s a lot to like about the layout of the Yellowfin 6700. The design does not break any new ground particularly, but everything just seems to work.

The hardtop is well proportioned, not to big, not too small. It provides excellent weather protection but does not intrude into the cockpit space. There is good ventilation at the helm and visibility is excellent through a full 360 degree range.

A point to note is that Quintrex has blacked-out the dash area and fitted light absorbing rubber matting across the dash to prevent glare and reflection from the windscreen and hardtop – and it works. Good thinking here.

There is plenty of headroom under the hardtop, a sturdy passenger grab rail across the dash, and ample space for electronics – either flush-mounted into the fascia, or bracket-mounted on top of the dash.

The sports steering wheel and throttle are placed for maximum comfort while seated or standing, though the stand-up driving position is the more comfortable as we felt the helm chair needed to be able to slide another inch or two further forward.

There is no bulkhead to separate the helm/saloon from the forward cabin so you just duck under the dash to gain entry.

With the open-plan design there is little privacy, but this will only be an issue if you are looking to get changed in the cabin – as there is no listed option for a toilet.

The cabin itself has ample headroom and 2.0m plus berths with underberth storage. All hatch covers are carpeted front and back for protection against mould and general weathering.

The optional vinyl upholstered berth cushions and back rests were fitted to the test rig. These are great for family outings but you would probably leave them at home for serious fishing trips.

A perspex hatch in the forepeak leads to the forward deck and anchor well. The hatch is wide, easy to operate and not too difficult to climb up through.

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COCKPIT AND TRANSOM
– All good and nothing to change here
Quintrex has spent many years perfecting the interior layout of its boats, and this is reflected in the excellent rear cockpit design.

Apart from the transom door set-up – which we think is unnecessarily complicated (why not just have an opening door rather than the step set-up), the design, layout and proportions are ideal.

The side decks/coamings are nice and wide, the cockpit floor is just the right length at 2.36m overall (and 1.55m behind the helm seats), the internal freeboard is perfect at 600mm along the sides, and the full length side pockets are elevated above the floor.

There is even toe/foot space under the rear transom wall (behind which is the dual battery set-up) so you can securely wedge your feet under them when fishing in rough water.

Behind the toe-space is a narrow recess in the cockpit floor designed to catch and direct water into the non-return scuppers. With this recess you won’t have to deal with any water sloshing around your feet – which is a common problem with open self-draining cockpit systems.

The transom/outboard well design also works very well. The live bait tank is built-into the transom corner and has a viewing window so you can monitor the condition of you livies at a glance.

Externally, the transom area has external boarding platforms with ladder on the starboard side, berley bucket on the port side.

The included bait board has an elaborate design with nylon cutting surface, drink holders, terminal tackle/tool storage area and a five-rod storage rack.

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ON THE WATER
– Comfortable, sure-footed, stable and quick
With a modest 19 degree vee shape at the transom you might expect the Yellowfin to be more stable than soft riding, but with a variable vee shape design both can be achieved – particularly in the larger trailerboat sizes.

The bow entry shape in the Yellowfin is fine and the stem has a nice gradual progression about it which helps to soften out the ride into a chop, whilst ensuring the hull rides safely and securely in a following sea.

We certainly could not find fault with the Yellowfin’s performance during our test – though conditions were admittedly very calm.

Generally we found the test rig also handled well, aided by the finger-tip control hydraulic steering and very strong engine performance. The two combined made the Yellowfin an absolute buzz to drive, although we did experience some cavitation through tight turns – which Telwater attributed to some slight damage to the propeller.

We mentioned earlier that the entry Yellowfin packages will have Evinrude E-Tec outboards in the 130 – 150hp range. You can get away with the minimum power and it will be perfectly satisfactory for offshore fishing – but it won’t be as much fun. Not sure you will need the full 225hp of the E-Tec G2 on the test rig (which is the maximum), but we would recommend power in the 175 – 200hp range.

With the big Evinrude on the transom we recorded a top speed of 42.4 knots. Getting there proved a lot of fun as the boat/engine combination is blistering quick when accelerating from displacement speeds – and pretty much from any point in the rpm range.

The boat/engine package was most economical when running at 3,500 rpm. It consumed 24.1 l/ph at a speed of 24.5 knots for a best economy figure of 1.02 nautical miles per litre – or a range of 193.15nm on 95% of the 200l capacity fuel tank.

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VERDICT
–  The pick of the Yellowfin range and a ripper plate sport fisher
Quintrex is on a winner with the new Yellowfin range. Our pick of the eight different models is this 6700 Hardtop. The smaller boats don’t quite have the seaworthiness or the cockpit fishing space of the bigger boat, while the flagship 7400 model is, for most people, going to be too big a step up with regard to purchase price, towing requirements, storage, and general upkeep.

The 6700 model has the best balance of capability vs cost and equipment levels. It is also a superb offshore fishing boat in its own right, and excellent value for money.

LIKES
>> Stunning performance with Evinrude G2
>> Comfortable ride with stability
>> Large, uncluttered cockpit
>> Toe-rail/foot space under transom
>> Dark rubber dash matting
>> Good ventilation under hardtop
>> Great value for money

NOT SO MUCH
>> Some cavitation in tight turns
>> No option for a toilet
>> Helm seat too far back

RATINGS
Overall rating: 4.74/5.0
Mechanical/equipment: 4.8/5.0
Packaging and practicality: 4.7/5.0
On the water performance: 4.8/5.0
Value for money: 4.8/5.0
X-factor: 4.6/5.0

PERFORMANCE – SPEED
5.3kts (9.8km/h) @ 1000rpm
6.1kts (11.3km/h)@ 1500rpm
8.8kts (16.3km/h) @ 2000rpm
13.7kts (25.3km/h) @ 2500rpm
19.9kts (36.8km/h) @ 3000rpm
24.5kts (45.3km/h) @ 3500rpm
29.2kts (54.0km/h) @ 4000rpm
32.5kts (60.1km/h) @ 4500rpm
36.1kts (66.9km/h) @ 5000rpm
40.1kts (74.3km/h) @ 5500rpm
42.4kts (78.4km/h) @ 6000rpm (WOT)

PERFORMANCE – ECONOMY
2.2 l/ph @ 1000rpm
5.2 l/ph @ 1500rpm
9.2 l/ph @ 2000rpm
12.5 l/ph @ 2500rpm
19.7 l/ph @ 3000rpm
24.1 l/ph @ 3500rpm
33.0 l/ph @ 4000rpm
40.0 l/ph @ 4500rpm
49.4 l/ph @ 5000rpm
64.1 l/ph @ 5500rpm
73.6 l/ph @ 5900rpm (WOT)

MAXIMUM RANGE ON 95% OF 200l FUEL TANK: 193.15nm @ 3500rpm

Specifications:
Price as tested: $100,790 including Evinrude 225hp E-Tec G2 HO DFI two-stroke (extra-longshaft) outboard, Yellowfin tandem axle aluminum trailer with electric hydraulic break-away brakes (and Catch ‘N Release latch), Simrad NSS9 Evo2 GPS chart plotter/fish finder, GME GX750B VHF radio, Savwinch 1500w electric drum anchor winch with anchor and rode, helm seat storage boxes, cabin berth cushions and side pocket upholstery, carpeted cabin ceiling and surrounds, two-tone paint, inshore safety gear pack and QLD boat and trailer registrations.
Priced from: $69,032 with Evinrude E-Tec 130hp two-stroke outboard, galvanised steel tandem axle trailer with electric hydraulic break-away brakes, inshore safety gear pack and QLD boat and trailer registrations.
Length overall: 7.05m
Hull length: 6.75m
Beam: 2.4m
Hull weight: 1186kg (dry)
Towing weight: Approx 2,200kg
Deadrise: 19 degrees
Bottom alloy: 6.0mm
Transom alloy: 5.0mm
Topside alloy: 4.0mm
Maximum power: 225hp
Engine as tested: Evinrude 225hp E-Tec G2 two-stroke outboard
Fuel: 200 litres
Height on trailer: 2.92m
Length on trailer: 8.23m
Maximum Persons: Seven

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