Old Town Introduces New Sportsman Kayaks

Old Town introduces the Sportsman line of fishing kayaks headlined by three motorized boats powered by a 45-pound thrust, 12-volt Minn Kota motor. The high-end Sportsman AutoPilot models include Minn Kota’s i-Pilot remote/GPS system.

Old Town Introduces New Sportsman Kayaks

The new Old Town Sportsman line includes seven models, three powered by Minn Kota motors with autopilot systems. (Photos: Old Town)

Old Town, the venerable Maine-based canoe and kayak company, will unveil a new line of fishing kayaks today at the Bassmaster Classic in Birmingham, Ala.

The new Old Town Sportsman Line will include seven models, headlined by three motorized boats: the AutoPilot 136, AutoPilot 120 and Old Town Sportsman 106. Each will be powered by a 45-pound thrust, 12-volt Minn Kota motor. The high-end AutoPilot models include Minn Kota’s i-Pilot remote/GPS system.

Kayak power drive is a technology addition that Old Town’s Ryan Lilly acknowledges isn’t new but is innovative. Retailers and their customers, he believes, will be pleased.

“Adding battery-powered propulsion to a fishing kayak is not a new idea – it is a growing trend,” said Lilly, a product and brand manager for Johnson Outdoors - Watercraft Division, which includes Old Town. “Anglers are DIY-ing their crafts, adding expensive aftermarket motor systems to their paddle and pedal kayaks. In all cases, it’s clunky, cluttered and complicated.”

The two OTS AutoPilot boats, which differ only in length, weight and price, and the slightly less technology spiffy OTS 106 model, are neither clunky, cluttered nor complicated.


The two Sportsman AutoPilot motorized kayaks feature the Minn Kota iPilot remote/GPS system.
The two Sportsman AutoPilot motorized kayaks feature the Minn Kota iPilot remote/GPS system.

“The new Old Town Sportsman motorized models offer a seamlessly integrated hands-free motorized angling experience,” Lilly said. “We saw an opportunity to improve this experience. Since we are Minn Kota’s sister company, we were able to work with their design team to engineer a seamlessly integrated experience. We’re offering anglers a superior – intuitive, clean and clutter free – motorized experience with these new models.”

The AutoPilot boats also come with hefty price tags. The 13 foot, 6-inch 136 model carries a MSRP of $3,999.99. The 12-foot 120 model is $3,799.99. The OTS 106 list price is $2,499.99.

Lilly hopes retailers won’t be spooked by the prices because he says customers won’t be, noting that the new lineup follows an exhaustive research effort.

“We have been working on this line for a long time and have invested heavily on the research front to understand what exactly the angling consumer wants in a small personal watercraft,” he said. “The entire lineup was designed based on direct input from our target customers. We have no doubts that this new line will strike a chord with our customers and will do extremely well.”

And the price tag?

“The growth that is happening within kayak angling is happening at the premium level,” Lilly added. “A retailer who isn’t stocking high end alternative propulsion crafts for serious anglers and tournament fisherman is missing out on an important growth segment. The new Old Town Sportsman AutoPilot delivers a platform for the serious angler and tournament fisherman who demands the best, no matter the price.”  

The Old Town Sportsman Line also includes the Bigwater 132 available with a PDL drive ($2,599.99) or paddle ($1,499.99); the OTS PDL drive 106 ($1999.99) and 120 (2,199.99), the Salty PDL drive ($1,899.99), 106 and 120 paddle ($899 and $999, respectively) models and the Discovery Solo 119 ($999). All models are available in ember camo or photic camo.

Manufacturers generally unveil their new or revamped product lines at ICAST, the annual fishing trade show held each July in Orlando. Lilly said the decision to pull back the curtain on their new line now was a practical – and business - one.

“Since the Old Town Sportsman product line is ready now, we decided to launch it now,” he said. “We (also) partnered with B.A.S.S. as the inaugural kayak sponsor of its new B.A.S.S. Nation kayak tournament – it is a perfect time and place to launch our new line.”

The Old Town Sportsman Line should be available for retail delivery about April 1.

Old Town Sportsman AutoPilot 120
Old Town Sportsman AutoPilot 120
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