I just tried out three of the Hobie kayaks... Outback, Rev 11, and 13. Here are my observations: The Outback is slow, sluggush, heavy, and a great fishing platform. Kind of like trying to paddle or peddle a tank in water.
If someone doesn't mind lots of resistance, this is a great boat for the angler since it has lots of deck room for fishing stuff, and stability for open water.
My personal favorite, however, was easily the Rev 11. Maybe because I have other kayaks for paddling and exploring. However, I really want a kayak for fishing. Thus, the need for the peddles and Mirage system. This kayak turns on a dime yet is very stable, great for peddling as well as paddling. And, especially for car topping. At 57 pounds, it was 20 pounds lighter than the Outback. Thus, a no brainer for my Thule Rack on top of our CRV Honda.
I didn't feel the Rev 13 added that much difference. Longer by a few inches but felt the Rev 11 had everything I needed. I plan to buy the Hobie Rev 11 this summer and replace my Old Town Pack canoe. The Mirage peddle system sold me on the advantages for a great fishing system.For what it is designed for this is a top notch kayak. The Mirage paddle system is pure genius. So much more efficient than the other propulsion system kayak (which I have also tried). This is a very fast kayak and fairly stable. It is short and narrow but with the Hobie tri-hull it is reasonably stable. Probably not as much as the Outback or some of the other wider Hobie kayaks.
The strengths of this model is easy to store, transport and launch due to its size and weight. It is very nimble and responsive when it comes to turning. It is very fast. Frees up your hands for fishing etc.
Weaknesses are its ruggedness. My other kayak is a Native Watercraft Manta Ray and this Hobie can't come close to its ruggedness but that is why the Hobie weighs half as much. I would not think the Hobie would be ideal for shallow oyster beds, rocks etc. You have to be very careful with the Mirage drive in shallow water and oyster beds etc. I see plenty using it in these conditions but you just need to be more careful than lets say my Manta Ray which plows thru anything.
This is a great kayak and for what it does and compared against other fishing and rec kayaks I give it a solid 10.
This is my wife's kayak and she loves it.