Tracker Grizzly 1448 Review
We’re back with another of the Tracker Grizzly line up of jon boats, this time with the 1448. The 1448 is still available from the manufacturer but the last design update was for the 2020 year. The 2019 model is also available. The difference between the two is just shy of $400 if you opt for the 2020 over the 2019. For the purposes of the review we’re just looking at the 2020 model.
Tracker Grizzly’s lineup of jon boats have proven to be tough and reliable although not as decked out with features and options as some boaters may want. The 1488 is an affordable aluminum jon boat. It’s a real barebones skeleton for a fishing boat that lets you do away with a lot of extras and give you something sturdy and usable at a decent price. Let’s check it out.
Features and Specs
The Tracker Grizzly 1448 jon boat is basically just a template for your fishing boat experience. There’s not a lot going on here and that’s the point. Unlike some manufacturers, Tracker likes to offer you the full package for one price so the number of options is very limited. That said, because the 1448 is essentially just the frame on which to build your boat, this model has more options than most. But let’s see what they have to offer as standard first.
- One of the biggest selling points for Tracker boats is their factory warranty or Tracker Promise. That’s a 5-year bow to stern warranty on their aluminum boats that covers parts and labor for defects in materials and workmanship on electrical components, livewells and plumbing, stereo, gauges, switches, console, windshield, steering wheel, fishing seats, carpet, vinyl, fuel system and gelcoat. Not all of that stuff is even available on the Tracker Grizzly 1448 but it’s a blanket warranty for all of their products.
- The warranty also covers hull, interior ribs, transom, exterior welds and decking, and more. It’s arguably the best factory warranty in the business.
- Bow and stern eyes
- 4 tie off cleats
- Accessory-mounting channel in gunnels
- Large front deck area
- Lockable storage compartment
- Non-skid interior
- Heavy-duty one-piece, extruded aluminum gunnels
- Trolling motor mounting surface along bow edge
- .190 aluminum floor and marine grade aluminum hull
- Bow & aft pedestal seat base locations
- Welded, drained rain channels for drier storage in bow compartment
- Welded-in, foam-filled interior side walls
- Overall length: 14 feet
- Beam: 6 feet
- Bottom width: 4 feet
- Max recommended HP: 25 horsepower
- Max person capacity: 3 people or 425 lbs
- Max total weight (passengers, motor and gear): 775 lbs
- Dry weight: 562 lbs
- Hull material: 0.100 5052 marine alloy
Unlike many Tracker models which are mostly pre-built, you have some play with what you want to add here. All of these options come with an additional cost that raises the price tag, sometimes significantly.
- Grassland or Woodland camo paint jobs at $400
- 14 foot single axle trailer for $1,200
- Cutting board for $67
- Fishing tackle tray for $90
- Drink holder for $35
- Swivel seat mount for $20
- Fold down seat with camo cushion for $165
- Dog ladder for $180
- Livewell kit for $205 or camo kit for $245
- Console kit with control box for $825 or camo kit for $875
Design and Versatility
The all aluminum welded hull ensures that the Tracker Grizzly 1448 is a solid and reliable jon boat. This is a driving feature behind all of the Tracker Grizzly line. These are tough boats. When you compare them to similar vessels that are cheaper the reason is often because the other boats are either not totally aluminum, not fully welded, or made with a thinner, cheaper grade of aluminum. Pound for pound you’re unlikely to find many other boats that are designed this sturdy.
The boat itself is obviously pretty simple and there aren’t a lot of bells and whistles to worry about. It’s a solid choice for a fishing boat when you like a quiet, leisurely day out on the lack alone or with a friend. It handles shallows exceptionally well and with some minor mods like a duck blind it’s great for hunting as well. The lockable bow deck storage roomy interior leaves plenty of space for gear or snacks.
This isn’t the best jon boat for big families or anyone who wants to be having fun cruising the lake, swimming or playing water sports. It’s definitely a fishing boat though if you have one or two littles ones who want to learn how to fish it’s definitely well-suited for that as well.
Performance and Handling
The 1448 is rated for a 25 hp max engine and that’s a reasonable amount of power to get you where you need to go. She’s not a speed demon but she’s not supposed to be, either. Because of her size, the Tracker Grizzly 1448 can suffer a little bit in rough conditions so make sure you’re keeping track of the weather. If things get too rough it’ll be a less than smooth ride back to shore but it should still stand up to the task, maybe just a little more slowly than you want.
With a trolling motor the handling from the bow is really precise. You can head into some really shallow flats and maneuver around with ease. The ride is typically quiet and very smooth thanks to the hull which is really well stabilized.
Comfort and Convenience
The layout of a Tracker Grizzly is usually pretty reliable and convenient. You have the large deck for fishing and a decent amount of storage space for a jon boat of this size. I’d definitely consider doing some storage mods to make the most of the space available, of course. Raising the deck, adding a livewell and so on can give you a lot more room to work with and make the most of the boat’s size and layout.
Fishing off the boat is really easy and you shouldn’t find operation of the engine or a trolling motor inconvenient, nor is casting and reeling from anywhere on board. It’s good at what it does because it’s really just that basic template so there’s not much to complain about.
In terms of comfort, at 14 feet it works best as a solo fishing boat or with one more person. The boat is rated for three passengers but unless the other two are kids you may end up feeling a little crowded overall.
There are no seats that come standard with the 1488 but you can get some pedestal seats added. They’re not the worst seats in the world but they’re not the most comfortable, either. Jon boat seating is, traditionally, a bit of a hassle no matter what brand you go with. Bench seats are usually much worse and the bench at the rear here is really nothing more than a plain, flat surface you can sit on. I’d definitely want to mod the seating here and splurge a little on something padded and more comfortable over the long haul.
The base price right from Tracker’s website for the Grizzly 1448 is $3,495. As you saw there are some options, however, and you can quickly boost the price to around $7,000 by adding on the trailer, camo paint and some seats and a livewell. And don’t forget you need to get your motor on there at some point as well. So there’s definitely a range with what the boat could end up costing you. That said, for just the bare bones, the price is pretty manageable for most if you’re willing to do some work to customize the basic frame into what you want.
Pros vs Cons
Now that we’ve seen what the Tracker Grizzly 1448 has to offer, let’s break it down as simple pros and cons.
- Bare bones design offers a lot of room to customize as you see fit
- Great 5-year factory warranty that covers almost everything
- Solid and durable welded aluminum hull should be able to last for many seasons with proper upkeep
- Decent amount of options to help customize your boat
- Good storage potential and efficient layout
- Small area is probably better suited to two rather than three people
- The lack of usable features means you are definitely paying more to get it into useable condition
- Limited options from the manufacturer for upgrades
Do We Recommend the Tracker Grizzly 1448 Jon Boat?
If you’re looking for a simple and efficient fishing boat for solo trips or the odd trip with a friend, then the Tracker Grizzly 1448 is a good option. Its biggest selling features are the Tracker Warranty and the tough, durable hull that should last you a long time.
If you want more of a complete boat, something ready to go right out of the box, so to speak, you may find yourself disappointed here, however, at least with what the company offers on the website. That said, you can definitely customize the boat to ensure storage, seating and a decent and functional layout, just remember that the price will increase.
Overall, if you want a tough boat that will last but isn’t too complicated or too big, it’s a good choice and well worth at least considering alongside similar vessels.
Categories: Jon Boats