Hobie introduced the MirageDrive pedal system as an alternative to the paddle in 1997, and essentially redefined kayaking. This first-in-kind innovation shifted propulsion from the arms and shoulders to the legs, and kayaking became easier, less tiring and fun for an entirely new audience, also allowing kayakers to spend more time fishing and exploring new areas on the water.
And Hobie engineers didn’t sit on their laurels. In the 20-plus years since, they have been constantly innovating, designing new premium products and a steady stream of enhancements to the MirageDrive, including Glide Technology, ARC cranks, multiple fin options, and the patented MirageDrive 180, which provides full power in both forward and reverse directions.
Earlier this year, Hobie unveiled the new MirageDrive 360 – a 360-degree rotating pedal drive that allows the all-new 2020 Hobie Mirage Pro Angler 360 Series fishing kayak to be easily maneuvered in every direction—backwards, forward, sideways, diagonally—or even spun on its own axis. Simply put, the MirageDrive 360 takes precision boat control and close-quarters maneuverability to entirely new levels.
When new 2020 Mirage Pro Angler 360 models begin showing up at Hobie dealers in late September – in a choice of Arctic Blue Camo or the angler-requested Amazon Green safety color – kayak enthusiasts will find another unique all-new feature as well: Kick-Up Fins.
All new 2020 Mirage Compass, Mirage Outback, Mirage Revolution, Mirage Sport, Mirage Oasis, Mirage Island Series and Mirage Pro Angler models will include this game-changing new feature as standard equipment.
Until now, pedal kayakers needed to be mindful of shallow waters where stumps, rocks and other underwater hazards risked damage to their propulsion system. Kick-Up Fins take the worry out of kayaking in shallow, structure-filled and debris-strewn waters by automatically retracting upon impact and immediately redeploying when clear of the obstacle. Equipped with new Kick-Up Fins, Hobie kayakers can go where there want and fish how they want with control and confidence.
“Kick-Up Fins afford worry-free access to additional productive waters, whether those waters hold fish or just more fun times,” said Hobie Vice President of Product Engineering, Jim Czarnowski. “Shallow and structure-filled areas are now completely navigable and fishable.”
Auto-retracting Kick-Up Fins will be standard equipment on all new 2020 Mirage kayaks except for Passport models. Kick-Up Fin-equipped Hobie kayaks begin shipping to authorized Hobie dealers this week.