Although relatively small in terms of number of boats it builds annually, Stingray has carved out an undeniable niche for itself thanks to superb fit and finish and its unique “zp hull.” Smallest in its line-up this year and one of only two outboard-powered boats is the Stingray 501zp.
Besides the high-quality fit and finish we’ve come to expect from Stingray, this motor boat is remarkable because of its unusual capacity: with an 80-hp outboard, it can take as many as five people or 1.085 pounds. We tested the 501 with Mercury’s 60-hp outboard and a 10¾x14 aluminum prop. That combination yielded a surprising top speed of 40 mph and even more surprising maximum fuel efficiency of eight mpg at 3500 rpm and 24 mph. Even with 10-percent reserve, that means a range of 36 miles on the standard tank.
Part of the reason for this excellent efficiency is no doubt the moderate 15-degree deadrise hull design. Yet even with those relatively flat aftersections, I found the ride smooth on test day. Helm response was excellent, a hallmark of the zp hull, and the 501 planed in just three seconds.
Quality with passion
Even though the 501 is Stingray’s entry-level model, it still gets the same detailing found in the company’s larger boats, things like stainless steel cleats, and bow and stern eyes, die-cast rubrail cap, polypropylene seat frames, PVC limber holes for good hull drainage, sport wheel, and welded stainless steel rails bolted through metal backing plates. Neither does Stingray 501zp scrimp on construction: the 501 gets hand-laid 24-oz. woven glass and KlegeCell composite coring for a strong yet light hull. The 501 weighs just 864 pounds less engine.
In spite of its small size, Stingray’s 501zp offers a lot of room. Back-to-back sun loungers can be dropped for extra sunning area, and the bowrider area offers enough room for chaise-lounge-style relaxing. The curved safety glass windshield comes relatively far aft, providing extra wind protection for passengers and helmsman. A fully carpeted sole, plenty of stowage and drink holders, and a locking glove box complete the package.
At the moment, the small, speedy outboard-powered boats manufactured by Stingray are not widely known by everyone across the country, but as soon as boatmen see this package, that’s bound to change.
Technical Specification of Stingray 501zp
- Base Price: N/A
- Standard Power: outboard to 80-hp
- Notable Standard Equipment: lockable glove box, curved safety glass windshield, large deluxe top-mounted drink holders. Twin lounge seats, side stowage, integrated swim platform, S/S bow lights lights and cleats. Bow stowage, commercial-grade scuff-resistant vinyls, all-weather marine carpet
- Construction: hand-laid 24-oz. woven fiberglass and KlegeCell; patented “z-plane” (zp) hull; notched transom
- Deadrise at Transom: 16°
- Warranty: 3-yearProtection Plan
- Measurments: Loa: 16’5″ Beam: 6’2″ Draft: 29″
- Approx. Weight: 864 lbs. (without engine)
- Fuel/Water Capacity: portable./0 gal.
- Options: digital depthfinder w/alarm, stereo system, digital stereo w/equalizer. Full canvas set, side/aft curtains, bow cover, walk-through flap. Mooring cover, auto/manual bilge pump, floor stowage, 2-step ladder
- Propeller: 10¾x14 aluminum prop