Story and photos by DinaRella / Additional images from Adrenaline Powerboats
Adrenaline Powerboats have a knack for standing out, whether running loud and proud at WOT churning up the waters, or eliciting oohs and ahhs in off-mode stirring up the crowds on the quays. This past March, Adrenaline incited another rush at the Palm Beach International Boat Show (PBIBS), causing an instantaneous contagious reaction that had attendees gushing over their latest model ZRX 47 Carbon Series V-bottom and never-before-seen 47 Reaper center console.
The outrageous optics on the American Made “One Nation Under God” Georgia-based brand’s newest naval duo drenched in badass billet bling (right on down to the custom battery cases on cc) and a plethora of carbon-fiber fineness did their job adding that high-performance buzz to the refined upscale vibe of the show where superyachts with sky deck Jacuzzis and towering sportfishing vessels are the nautical norm.
The unique touches, techniques and top caliber craftsmanship embedded in the fibers of these stealth speedsters speak volumes visually and performance-wise… but that’s only part of the package with Adrenaline. The personable demeanor and gracious air of the entire Layton family make you somehow appreciate even more, the Adrenaline DNA baked in to each build from bow to stern, after witnessing their dedication to excellence in quality, consistency and finesse firsthand. Being able to talk fastboats with other intelligent and informed females including Layton’s wife Robin, and their two daughters Kate and Anna was another major plus.
My first glimpse of the ZRX 47 Carbon Series came on opening day right before the rain Gods decided to perform their own opening of the skies, with a nice afternoon water ceremony. Regardless of the raindrop deluge, there was no missing the orange and black all-epoxy, carbon-infused 4-step bottom hull. The 11,000 pounder created and assembled from high-tech CAD and CNC machining methods screams of supercar styling, one example being: the fit and finish of the black billet logos and grab handles behind each row in the six-person cockpit.
The distinct Adrenaline-esque engine hatch of the new model serves as another example, and definitely makes you do a double take. A switch from the prior yellow and grey edition with sunpads placed along the rear, this one is all done up in visual carbon louvers and marine matting up the middle passageway. For those doing a triple take, the staggered Mercury Racing turbocharged 1350-hp powerplants (engine packages range from 1100 hp to 1750 hp per engine) capable of blasting past the 150-mph crescendo, become the next eyeball-expanding reward.
Equally impressive is watching how the entire top cover opens with the push of a button, comparable to the single touch, smart hatch knob located on the center console which electronically pops up the pod leading down to the walk-in cabin.
Adrenaline proprietary electronics including a 10” touch-screen user interface and 12” digital display bedeck the dash of the attention-getter, which is anchored by a 17” Garmin. Throttle placement in the center of the cockpit was also well thought out, and lets the owner and/or driver choose between running solo or sharing duties with a co-pilot on the guns. And speaking of owners, this ZRX is soon to depart for the Middle East to be reacquainted with its owner in Kuwait. Luckily, we have the 47 Reaper to get to know next – and that beast is here to stay!
47 Reaper Center Console
A flawless fabrication feat was repeated on Adrenaline’s first-ever center console designed for British property developer Marcus Cooper. Anna Layton, head of composites, best defined the 47-footer in three words, “It’s elegantly aggressive!”
Paired with five Mercury Racing 450s, the aggression can be felt (even if not heard) from the outboards pumping out 2,250 horsepower. The Reaper plows through any chop in its pathway, peeling waves off its bow while cruising in the 60 mph range or bruising the seas at tops speeds of 80-plus mph… both of which are solid initial running numbers, considering the heft of the 19,000 pound vessel (dry weight with 5 outboards) equipped with a Seakeeper SK3 and 8kw generator.
Over 120 complex molds metamorphosed into a supersonic looking rarity complete with Reaper-branded spoiler mounts, cutting-edge exterior curves, visual carbon creature comforts up and down; and not to forget, an impeccable interior from Miami Prestige. If the ZRX took its styling cues from the supercar world, the Reaper’s galactic glam has been sampled from the aerospace industry.
Five unforgettable features playing into the functionality of hull No. 1 jumped out at me on my first go around on board.
1 - A unique gutter system for water flow was crafted into the flooring and GatorStep marine matting, which allows the freshwater from the rain shower built into the center of the hardtop, to self drain through the cut out grooves.
2 - In addition to the practicality of the gutter drainage, the gas cap instrumentation was fabricated in such a way that any excess spillage filters out of the boat and not in it. And while not related to the filling up mechanism, cosmetically speaking, directly forward of the caps, the configuration of the deck changes shape creating a sleeker transformative front angle view from bow to stern or vice versa.
3 - It is doors galore on the Reaper and each set serve their own purpose. Midway back, the wind deflectors do their job pushing those forceful gusts around the sides of the boat, protecting guests behind the cockpit from the elements. Dual aft dive doors which tuck perfectly into the rear sides come equipped with shoe and sandal storage pockets, and do their part to simplify docking procedures and make it easier for entering and exiting. The last pair of doors located to port and starboard on the stern, open outward onto the transom, and flip up in an uncomplicated kind of way, for when you need to get to the engines.
4 - Up at the bow, running boards with LEDs underneath have been placed below the padded gunwales allowing the shorter crew members easier access when it comes time to tie off fenders and toss over the lines. And for anyone looking to “cast a line” off the Reaper, this feature would also come in handy. (Adrenaline will also be offering customizable angler-friendly amenities on its future cc builds.)
5 - Under the all-carbon hardtop put together from 14 separate pieces, besides the charging ports on top of the dash, nine flush mounted speakers, and the latest Garmin monitors – the second row of seating is what impressed me. In the middle of each seat were fold-down storage cubicles or compartments for additional quick access storage.
At the time of the show, the lower cabin which features a queen-size berth, separate head, and heaps of space for entertaining was undergoing finishing touches. Hoping it would be complete shortly after the show, I held off on the story. Now as we hit mid May, all I can say is, “Good things come to those who wait!”
And speaking of waiting, everyone is always waiting on the price. The debut 47 Reaper retails for $1.7 million, however entry level into the model starts closer to $1.5 million. Currently six are in production, and the company forecasts production at 10 to 12 per year. Blue and black hull No. 2 with a quad engine package should be done by the end of the summer; Adrenaline was kind enough to provide us a preliminary peek.
Another peek Anna gave me was pertaining to the origins of the Reaper name. It hails from the well-known “reap what you sow” idiom and is also from Galatians 6:7 and Corinthians 9:6 in the New Testament. The meaning behind the biblical dogma and doctrine relates to the long term effect of actions, or more precisely, how hard work comes back to you one way or another. “For the past twenty years, our family has been working hard to develop the Adrenaline Powerboats series, and the reason we named the center console the Reaper is because we believe it’s going to reap what we deserve, after establishing ourselves as a leading brand in the boating industry,” shared Anna.
It appears the Layton’s are absolutely reaping what they’ve sown. A smaller and a larger center console edition – the Reaper 2 and the Reaper 3 – are already on the future radar screen.