Atomix boats have been on the Australasian boating scene since 2006 and whilst many reckoned they wouldn’t last, they have proved the doubters wrong and are here to stay. Freddy Foote checks out one of the latest models, the 600TT .
You’ve probably seen them at boat shows, but you might not know a lot more about them apart from that. So what is an Atomix?
Atomix boats are designed here in New Zealand by kiwi designer Brett Bakewell-White, the moulds are manufactured here, then the boats themselves are manufactured in Atomix’s purpose built factory in China, before being freighted back to New Zealand or Australia in containers where some final assembly work is done.
Turn key packages are usually available ready to go, but occasionally running short, from order to delivery, the turnaround is just six weeks.
The Atomix 600TT is a new model in the Atomix range and shares the same hull as the 600 Hardtop Fisherman and the popular 600 Sports Cuddy, the size range that is in fact the company’s biggest seller in this part of the world. The 600TT is almost identical in layout to the full hardtop model, except it comes with a collapsible targa top with built-in bimini, which you can further close in with the addition of clears.
The 600TT has been designed for those who want the feel and look of a hardtop, with the flexibility of being able to run the boat with and without clears, and having the versatility of being able to fold it all down to accommodate garage storage.
The 600TT like all boats from Atomix sees some construction changes, with the company moving to resin infused GRP hulls rather than traditional hand laid GRP. The more sophisticated vacuum bagged method provides a higher quality and is said to make the boat more rigid.
Having tested two of the very first Atomix models in 2006, an 820 Centre Console, and an 820 Weekender, I was pleased to see that a lot of improvements, particularly with regard to finish, have been made
Forward, a high bowrail is split at the bow, allowing passengers to disembark directly on to a beach or wharf – a great feature. The forward cabin was light and roomy, with upholstered bunks and backrests around the V-shaped berth. The entrance into the cabin from the helm area was nicely accentuated with a teak strip along the floor.
As in many boats of this size and configuration, a large deck hatch above provides light and extra ventilation, and access to the forward anchor locker – though anchoring can be done from the helm.
At the helm the 600TT is fitted with two upholstered pedestal seats on moulded bases providing storage underneath. The dash is a modular unit made from GRP, and easily accommodates the Humminbird 788 GPS / fish finder combo, VHF, switch panel and Mercury SmartCraft instruments.
Underway, there was plenty of visibility forward through the curved windscreen, and it provided a reasonable amount of protection from the wind. Standing, the throttle was in easy reach and there was enough foot room between the seat base and the cabin bulkhead to stand comfortably to drive.
For passenger comfort there are plenty of grab rails around the helm area, including a rail that stretches across the top of the windscreen. A convenient cubbyhole is located next to the forward passenger seat, a great place to keep cellphones, keys and wallets.
Should you wish to take the family out for the day or you simply have a couple of extra passengers, upholstered seats pull out from the gunwales on each side. When not needed they easily drop back down again and out of the way. Thigh padding runs along the inside of the coamings for when you’re on that big fish.
The aft cockpit corners feature another two upholstered seats, with the starboard corner housing a removable bin underneath. In the port corner access out of the water and into the boat is via a built-in boarding ladder, while a fixed and centrally mounted ski pole takes care of all watersport activities.
Should you want to fish, a bait board can be mounted onto the ski pole (seen on our photo boat Atomix 600) Above, protection is provided via the collapsible bimini targa top configuration with built-in rocket launcher – great option if you want all the protection and comfort of a hardtop without actually having one. Above, a large spotlight is fitted to the bimini frame providing night-time illumination of the cockpit area.
In addition to the rocket launcher, there are four rod-holders located around the cockpit. The self-draining cockpit is finished with anti-slip tread, and among the most prominent features of the boat are the three underfloor storage compartments in the cockpit for the day’s catch or wet gear.
A large compartment in the middle of the transom is accessed via a hatch, and houses onboard systems such as oil and batteries.
Plenty of Power
Rated from 90hp through to 150hp outboards, our test boat was rigged with a 150hp Mercury OptiMax outboard with an Enertia propeller, providing plenty of low down grunt out of the hole.
The 600TT was no slouch and returned a healthy 45mph @ 5500rpm and using 45.4L/h. At a comfortable cruise of 31.0mph @ 4000rpm the 600TT and Mercury OptiMax 150hp was using 24.0L/h.
Overall, the outboard and hull package worked well together, and had more than enough power to fulfil a range of boating activities. I’d suggest that it would perform acceptably well with a 115-135hp outboard.
On test day we were greeted by some blustery and choppy conditions, which were actually perfect for boat testing, representing what a lot of boaters encounter on return trips home.
The boat handled reasonably well. Driving cautiously and for the conditions, we did get a bit of spray on the windscreen, whipped up by the windy conditions. Having tested two Atomix models previously, the 600TT shares many of the same attributes. The boat definitely had a soft ride and it was great to be able to test the hull on some choppy and unpredictable water this time around.
The 600TT still seems to have a narrow feel to the hull, you always feel as though you’re having to balance the boat on a knife-edge particularly in a quartering or side-on sea common with deep vee hulls.
While this boat wasn’t fitted with them, Trim tabs are in the standard options list to aid the lateral balance of the boat. While the craft was rigged with a Mercury OptiMax direct injection two stroke and Humminbird electronics package, Atomix has relationships with all the major marine brands and their Australasian distributors, allowing you to spec the boat how you choose.
Looking at the as-tested package, I’d say it’s comparable with what you can also get manufactured here locally. Style wise, visually the boat looks great, and looks great on the water, and it sure has a lot of innovative and practical features.
- Model: Atomix 600TT
- Priced from: $NZ55,995.00
- Price as tested: $NZ73,995
- Type: GRP Cabin/Targa Top
- Construction: GRP
- LOA: 6.0m
- Beam: 2.3m
- Deadrise: 23 degree
- Trailerable weight: 1500kg
- Engine capacity: 90-150hp
- Power options: Outboard
- Fuel capacity: 145L
Notable Standard Features
Electric Anchor winch, Split bow rails, Manta
Marine folding rocket launcher and bimini, canvas top, BEP switch panel, fold down cockpit seats, navigation lights, BEP isolator.
Notable Options on Test Boat
Humminbird 788 GPS / fish finder combo, NZ Gold chart card, Icom VHF and antenna, Fusion True marine iPod stereo, Fusion wired remote, AM/FM antenna, Cockpit lights, Spot light
- Make: Mercury
- Power: 150hp
- Model: OptiMax
- Cylinder Config.: V6
- Displacement: 2507cc
- Max rpm: 5500
- Propeller: S/S Enertia
- Retail Price: $NZ24,775.00 (with
- Smart Craft kit)
- Make: Atomix ABT1500
- Braked: Hydraulic
- Suspension: Durotorque
- Rollers: Multi roller
- Std Equipment: Jockey, winch, LED lights
- Retail Price: $NZ6500.00