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Friday, 31 January 2014 00:00

Slayer Propel VS. Outback

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Like the age-old “Chevy vs. Ford” debate, many people have asked us to compare the new Native Watercraft “Slayer Propel 13” with the Hobie “Outback”. Rather than give you my personal opinion on what kayak is better, I decided to give you a breakdown of each kayak’s features and options. This side-by-side comparison will give you some information to consider when thinking about which kayak might be better for you.

native watercraft slayer propel and hobie outback

Kayak Model Hobie Outback Native Watercraft Slayer Propel
Length 12’ 1” 13’ 2”
Width 33" 33"
Weight 88.3 lbs 101 lbs
Capacity 400 lbs 500 lbs
MSRP $1,999.00 $2,399.00
Drive Mirage Drive with Turbo fin upgrade (can be “fluttered” in shallow water) Propel Drive (drive has reverse but must be removed in shallow water)
Drive User Height Adjustment Mirage arms adjust Seat slides forward or aft
Front Hatch Covered front hatch (opens to entire hull) Open front hatch (cover available, one scupper hole, sealed to the rest of the hull)
Other Hatches Round center hatch, rear center hatch Electronics console, small round hatch behind seat
Foot Pegs/Wells Molded in foot wells None
Seating Classic kayak seat (butt on the deck) Framed First Class seat (butt raised off deck)
Standing Surface No "designed" standing platform (Round center hatch under your feet) Flat standing platform (Standing area is padded)
Rod Holders Four molded in (two forward, two aft) One flush mount rod holder (opposite side of rudder control)
Tankwell Large bungee tankwell with crate recess Large bungee tankwell with bucket  and crate recess
Rudder Stowable rudder Fixed rudder
Carry Handles T-style rope handle bow and stern, one solid and one fabric handle in center All solid foam-covered handles: bow, stern, and center
Accessory Mounting Lowrance transducer mount ready Electronics consoe and tracks on bow, cockpit, stern, and around console
Scupper Holes Four (two under seat, two tankwell) Nine (One bow hatch, six cockpit, two tankwell)
Cup Holder Two built into hull One on drive cover
Paddle Keepers Two - bungee on each side Available track-mount (not included)
Storage Tray/Accessory Small accessory pouch on deck, recesses around cockpit Plano tackle tray storage behind seat, recesses on drive cover
Sail Kit Available Yes No
Paddle Included Yes No


Some things to consider after reading the features breakdown: Hobie’s Outback has been in production since 2001, while the new Slayer Propel started production in late 2013. Do you consider the Outback’s time in service an advantage or disadvantage? Is Hobie stuck in the past with the Outback’s design?

Native’s Propel drive has been in service for five years and has had three revisions, while the Mirage drive has been around since 1997 and had numerous revisions. Do sheer time in service and multiple revisions give the Hobie Mirage drive an advantage?

The Mirage drive can be operated in shallower water then the Propel drive by fluttering the drive fins instead of fully engaging them. The Propel drive allows you to go in reverse without having to remove the unit. Which is more important to you?

When everything is said and done, nothing can really help a person make up their mind better then taking both kayaks out for a test paddle/pedal. Our best recommendation would be to rent or borrow each kayak for a day of fishing. This will allow you to decide what features you like and dislike about each boat, and whether one drive is better than the other for your style of fishing. In the end, there is no perfect boat that will suit everyone.

Read 37085 times Last modified on Friday, 31 January 2014 09:07
Mark Watanabe

Mark "YakSushi" Watanabe is the Co. Founder of, "He built this site!". He considers himself a mediocre fisherman and an unexceptional writer. He's the devoted father of a ton of little sushis (Air Quotes) and everyday tech ninja.