Acceleration Times & Conditions
|Props||14 x 23|
|Load||2 persons; 12.75 gallons fuel; 50 lbs. gear|
|Climate||81 deg.; 10 humid.; winds: 5-10; seas: 1|
1 x 250-hp Mercury Pro XS
The Ranger Z521L is one of Ranger’s premier bass boats. Our test boat came Ranger Cup Equipped, which gives the boat all the bells and whistles a serious angler would need to be tournament ready. The L-series brings stylish designs, Ranger’s Ultra Comfort Seats, a Secure Engine Start Keypad, a custom trailer and functionality that makes this a quality boat live up to the Ranger name.
- Mercury 250 Pro XS engine.
- Handmade Ultra-Comfort Seats
- Power Ventilation Rod Storage
- Minn Kota Fortrex 80 24V trolling motor
- Hot Foot Throttle Pedal
- Custom Matching Ranger Trailer
Performance and Handling
The Ranger Z521L has an LOA of 21’8” (6.6 m) and a beam of 98” (248.92 cm). With an empty weight of 1,950 lbs. (885 kg), 25% fuel, two people and test equipment, we had an estimated test weight of 2,952 lbs. (1,339 kg). With the single 250-hp Mercury Pro XS turning a 14 x 23 prop and would up to 5860 RPM, our speed topped out at 67.1 MPH. The best cruise was at 3000 RPM and 26.1 MPH. At that speed, the 5.5 GPH fuel burn translated into 4.8 MPG and a range of 220 miles.
The Z521L was just a pleasure to drive and required little elevated skill to drive. This boat is designed for the average fisherman but performed like a professional angler’s boat. With her sharp handling characteristics and almost zero chine walk at top speeds, this boat truly lives up to the Ranger name.
The casting deck is all-carpeted over padding so it’s soft and completely eliminates fatigue when standing for long hours. The console has been reconfigured to accommodate longer rods that can be stored on this deck with the retractable rod-straps fully forward.
There are three storage compartments for rods and we noticed that none of them were carpeted to protect the gear. This is by design. Carpets hold moisture and that moisture gets transferred to your expensive gear. So not only are we making the compartment drier, but it’s also got a power ventilation system to further dry out the contents. Very slick. The port holds 10 8’ (2.44 m) rods, the center holds five 8’6" (2.59 m) rods in the first row and 5 9’ (2.74 m) rods in the second row while seven more rods go in the starboard compartment.
At the aft deck, there’s plenty of workspace and the area underneath the deck is packed with features. For starters, Ranger has long been known as a company that continually makes improvements to its livewells. Here, two hatches in the center reveal a single 31-gallon (117 L) livewell with a divider and redundancy in the form of two pumps and two oxygenators. Large dry storage compartments are to both sides of that Livewell. And a single position pedestal base accommodates the second removable seat.
Options to Consider
The Z521L is fully customizable with a vast amount of upgrades to choose from -- from stern to bow. Our boat came with the Ranger Cup Package which includes such things as Lowrance HDS 12” graph on the console and bow, two 8’ (2.43 m) power poles, Minn Kota Ultrex 112 US trolling motor, three Lithium trolling motor batteries, Hot Foot, Trim Lever, Remote Pump-out and Challenger trailer wheel upgrade for an additional $4,600. There is also the option for a Z521L Touring package instead, which would give you a Dual Pro Battery Gauge, Hamby’s Keel Protector, Oxygenator Livewell system, Deluxe Boat Cover, and Trailer parking brake for only $1,590 more. But even if buyers don’t want to splurge on the packages, there are so many options to choose from to design this boat for the buyer's wants and needs.
- Standard Ranger Z521L $75,295
- Z521L Ranger Cup Equipped $79,895
- Z521 Touring Package W/ Dual Pro Charger $76,885
For 52 years, Ranger has been setting a standard of excellence in the industry and this boat is one of many prime examples that they still are. With its high build quality and its premium features, this boat will satisfy the average Joe fisherman or the Tournament angler.