HOBIE: The BIG Unveil!
Jul 22nd, 2021 by Keith Worrall
Modified Jul 22nd, 2021 at 10:48 AM
IKE’s Ultimate Hobie Fishing Kayak…
Hobie’s new Mike Iaconelli edition Mirage Pro Angler 14 with 360 Drive Technology is loaded with features and personality.
OCEANSIDE, Calif. (July 21, 2021) – In a move that absolutely screams “Booyah!”, Hobie – the world’s leading manufacturer of premium kayaks and watersport products – has teamed up with one of the biggest and brightest fishing personalities of all time to introduce a new take on the company’s flagship fishing kayak. Meet the brand-new Mike Iaconelli edition Mirage Pro Angler 14 with 360 Drive Technology – and be prepared to do a double take.
“We’re calling this IKE for short,” says Morgan Promnitz, Hobie’s Director of Fishing Development, “and we’re super excited about this release. We’ve been talking with Mike for a while about designing a kayak with his input that would highlight his fishing skills, flash his no holds barred personality, and offer Hobie fans the chance to fish from the same customized platform as the only angler ever to have won the Bassmaster Classic, Bassmaster Angler of the Year, and B.A.S.S. Nation Championship. After batting the idea around for a while, we all agreed that one choice was most worthy of this honor – the ultimate human-powered fishing machine, and winner of the 2019 ICAST Best of Show award – our Mirage Pro Angler 14 with 360 Drive Technology.”
Featuring a smoking-hot firecracker-red-over-black camouflage finish that aligns with Mike’s brand coloring, this new boat incorporates all features of Hobie’s renown Mirage Pro Angler 14 360, including its one-of-a-kind patented 360 drive technology, and then adds several custom features plus sharp-looking highlights. Custom molded IKE graphics grace the sides of the hull with Mike’s signature prominent on the stern. A set of IKE-inspired shark face decals, as seen on Mike’s tournament bass boat, can easily be applied to the bow giving the Hobie that signature look. Unique EVA grip pads with IKE logos provide sure footing and extra comfort when standing on deck.
“Man, I’m stoked about this launch,” says Iaconelli with more than a little enthusiasm. “I can’t wait for people to see this kayak, to enjoy it, to catch their biggest fish from it. I’m thrilled that Hobie came to me with this opportunity to help create something special. They are the world leaders when it comes to kayak technology, and that drive tech has changed the way I kayak fish over the years. With their patented MirageDrive 360 propulsion system and super-stable platforms, I can maneuver, I can steer, and I can set up my kayak position perfectly for every cast in big water, significant current, and shallow coves – and I can do it all hands free. The PA 14 360 base platform is simply the best kayak I’ve ever been in, so there was no hesitation at all in getting this done. Now, I’m anxious to see everyone’s reaction and hear their opinions – and I can’t wait to view the first photos of other anglers putting the IKE to the test.”
As noted, the newly launched boat comes with all the primary features of Hobie’s renown Mirage Pro Angler 14. That includes the revolutionary, forward and reversing MirageDrive 360 with Kick-Up Turbo Fins, the most revolutionary human-powered drive system in the world that pedals in any direction and has fins that fold out of the way when contacting underwater obstacles like rocks or tree stumps. The ultra-comfortable elevated and adjustable Vantage Seating system with BOA lumbar support is also included, as is a spacious deck with amazing fishing features like horizontal rod storage and pivoting tackle management, a huge capacity of 600 pounds, and acres of H-Rail for mounting accessories like rod holders, cameras, electronics and more. Additional standard features include front and center hatches, a Guardian retractable transducer shield and fishfinder installation system, cart scupper holes for transport, and bungee tie downs fore and aft. The IKE is also configured to easily accept a Power-Pole® Micro anchor system.
“People know me as a serious touring bass pro, but I also have a love and respect for kayak fishing,” says Iaconelli. “I started out in a small boat as a kid and this brings me back to that place. It’s a place I want to share. In a stressed-out world where a lot of people are trying fishing for the first time, or returning to the sport after years away, I realize it can be hard to get started, but the accessibility of kayak fishing can open a lot of doors to fun and success. If you want to catch tuna, it’s tough because you need a million-dollar boat to run offshore. If you want to fish an elite bass series, you need big bucks up front, too. With kayak fishing, though, you can jump right in with minimal investment. Any place you can pedal or paddle, freshwater, or salt, tournament fishing or fun fishing, boat ramp or no boat ramp, and even rail hopping, there’s so many options. You can even enter the Hobie Kayak Bass Open Series (B.O.S.) for a nominal fee. It’s all good – and it can really be a blast!”
Naturally, Ike is also proud to splash a little bit of his personality across Hobie’s new launch. “I wanted to bring some of who I am to this kayak,” he says. “That’s portrayed through the coloring, logos, the toothy shark face stickers and, of course, that hot new firecracker red camo pattern. That color pattern has been part of my brand from the beginning. To me, it represents energy, excitement, fun and passion. These are all things that are built into who I am as a fisherman. They’re what I bring to the game every day. I hope it all helps to inspire anyone who tries the Mirage Pro Angler 14 360 Mike Iaconelli Edition to fish hard, love the outdoors, encourage others to get on the water, and keep it all fun.”
In other words, climb in, push off, and fish like Ike.
The new Hobie IKE edition Pro Angler 14 with MirageDrive 360 technology will be revealed at ICAST on Wednesday, morning, July 21, at the Hobie booth (#4420) at 10am EST. A limited initial run of 2021 production IKE kayaks will be available in stores by late July with a MSRP of $5,299. To purchase, consumers can use the dealer locator feature at www.hobie.com to find the authorized Hobie dealer closest to their location.