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ChrisD46

Is Jackson Kayak Asleep ??

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Is it just me or does it seem Jackson Kayak is falling behind the last few years in serious fishing kayaks  as compared to Wilderness Systems , Old Town and others ? ... I wanna like the Big Rig and Coosa but then you look at the new Old Town Predator XL ,  The Wilderness Systems new Radar , the Ride series and new ATAK series provide better options now for pedal , power or paddle . Not hate'n or troll'n - just wondering why Jackson Kayak has not been as aggressive as some of it's rivals to upgrade and provide the types of new innovation fishermen are looking for in a dedicated fishing kayak in 2017 (additionally where have the been at ICAST lately?)  Take the Big Rig for instance - as wide as it is - it's still tippy as the secondary chimes are almost non - existent . Re-design the hull and give a pedal option and  a factory power option for this tanker. The Coosa needs revising as well in the HD line with a expanded new  14' / 35" model with the same paddle / pedal / power option . Just say'n if I was after a new serious fishing kayak I would have to go with a company offering 2017 innovation / technology  and not just providing 2014 technology re-issue kayaks  in new colors ! ... Your thoughts and experiences  ?

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Could it  be because Eric's too busy donating his money to the FLW tour?

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I would have to agree.  I own an older Cuda.  When I bough it, Jackson had a lot of features not offered in other kayaks.  Now, 5 years later I'm looking at buying a new kayak and the Jackson Cuda is literally the same boat that I have with the exception of Jacksons new seat (not specific to cuda) and the lid on the center hatch.  After 5 years I would have expected a few more advancements comparable to the ones seen in other companies offerings.

 

Jackson has become the Iphone of the kayak world.  They were once innovative and cutting edge but now just re-brand the same product in different colors year after year.

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Well put Longo - I was such a fan 3 to 5 years ago and now the innovation appears to have stopped . As a large body fisherman I kept waiting before ICAST each year to see if there would be upgrades to the Big Rig or the Coosa HD and nothing . Meanwhile Old Town , Wilderness Systems and others I have not heard of a few years ago are really coming on strong . As consumers we can vote with our wallets ...

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It's a very crowded market these days, with some previously cheap mfg's making serious fishing kayaks cheaper. Add to that there are SUP's siphoning off some business. If you want to remain relevant and still command a high price you're going to have to be innovative.

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Jackson's fishing kayaks never impressed me that much.  I own a Coosa.  Noisy, wet, poor tracking, Poorly designed, leaky hatches.  I got it thinking it would be a decent creek boat, or a second boat for a guest.  I do like the seat.  Might be one of the most comfortable in the biz.  I think that's what got to overlook all the other shortcomings.

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I have a 2015 Cuda 12, and am ok with it. I fish a few rivers nearby, and Lake Murray in it. I agree with most of what you're saying. I'm looking at a couple of other brands for next year myself.

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I don't know..... I think Jackson is doing a decent job....there's only so much innovation you can add on a yak. They have a standard line, LT line and HD, peddle drive....all the stuff others have. I have a Cuda LT and have been very happy with it. As a car top guy I was thrilled that someone made a 12ft SOT fishing yak under 70lbs. 

 

But out yes the fishing kayak market is crazy! Everyone wants a piece of the pie and a gimmick that one has that the other doesn't might gain that company a sale! 

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What do you want, that they don't have? 

 

The Big Rig with a pedal drive would be a $3k boat...the Coosa/Cuba HD's have every possible feature you could need. 

 

They at just introduced a Fly-fishing centric boat in the MayFly...do you see any other brands doing that? 

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On 3/19/2017 at 11:28 AM, Longo said:

I would have to agree.  I own an older Cuda.  When I bough it, Jackson had a lot of features not offered in other kayaks.  Now, 5 years later I'm looking at buying a new kayak and the Jackson Cuda is literally the same boat that I have with the exception of Jacksons new seat (not specific to cuda) and the lid on the center hatch.  After 5 years I would have expected a few more advancements comparable to the ones seen in other companies offerings.

 

Jackson has become the Iphone of the kayak world.  They were once innovative and cutting edge but now just re-brand the same product in different colors year after year.

 

 

You likely just andwered everyone's question without realizing it.  

 

It it costs money to be out front...  A lot of it.  Do you have any idea how much a molding setup costs?  Even outsourcing production and simply paying for tooling, engineering and labor is likely in the hundreds of thousands for a new kayak line. 

 

Jackson came out swinging a few years ago with the Cuda and Big Rig.  They had a lot of innovative features and were light years ahead of a lot of other options at the time.... but now it has been a few years, and while I'm positive they're working on new models it can be quite the wait if you're either a) putting major R&D into a revolutionary new product indicative of your last release strategy OR b) maximize returns from the old mold so your investors are pleased with their expenditure roi despite maybe taking a bit of a hit on sales volume after the rest of the world stood on their shoulders with their newest boats.  

 

Likely a combination of both factors along with others, but I wouldn't stress- the longer you wait the better the boat will be.  Technology and generational designs make exponential improvements, so I think Jackson is likely closer than you think.... or going out of business ? Time will tell!  

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