Deep South Gem

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Barry Thompson checks out the Aqualine 545CC, one of two centre console models in their range.

Built by Kiwi Kraft, Aqualine boats have an enviable reputation for quality, performance and handling on both sides of the Tasman. Barry Thompson checks out the 545CC, one of two centre console models in their range. 

Built in Invercargill, the home of some of this country’s leading alloy boat builders, Aqualine is built by Kiwi Kraft and was initially developed for the Australian market where the Aqualine name replaces Kiwi Kraft. However, it is now also available on the local market through Boat City.. 

“It is a great boat that we see being ideal for the Kiwi fisherman, with not only a fabulous ride and finish but also it’s affordable”, says Mark Presnell, sales consultant at Auckland Marine Centre, Auckland dealers for Kiwi Kraft and Aqualine. While our boat was highly speced, Mark has ideas to offer the Aqualine range as a more basic entry-level package.

“We plan to offer the Aqualine as a no-frills model built by Kiwi Kraft, that maybe lacks some of the extras and features, but takes nothing away from the ride, performance and finish.

“Sort of Commodore as opposed to a Calais”, says Mark. 

Right from the bow to the transom, every space in the boat has been perfectly utilised with no wasted areas. The bow features a built-in anchor pulpit, with a trolling motor mounting plate alongside. The anchor locker is massive and completely open, with plenty of space to mount a small drum winch. The bow area can be left clear or as in the case of our boat, came with a 55 litre Icey Tek bin.

The size of the centre console is such it still leaves ample room around it, while a large enough dash for instruments, controls and an MFD. As is customary from Kiwi Kraft the T-top is over engineered with heavy guage alloy framing and a soft bimini complete with an extension. We had a removable 155 litre Icey Tec bin andseat with cushion reversible backrest. Makes a great fish or bait bin. 

Running the full length of the 545 CC, including right up into the bow is open storage trays, capable of taking your longest boat rods. These are recessed into the tube sponsons and again show the thought gone into the overall design concept of this small boat. 

Multiple sealed chambers for extra buoyancy and safety, mean you can effectively leave the bungs out and the boat will not sink. Full-length underfloor stringers are fully welded with a cross brace system for added strength & safety. The round tube pontoons which are designed to provide a softer and quieter ride are all part of what Kiwi Kraft call their Hushtec Ride hull design. The large pontoons offer excellent stability, as I experience with two of us and a dog out fishing. /


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