A Better Levante? Megabass
Remakes their Mainstream Rod Series
To achieve this
the team had to completely redesign the Levante blanks, starting with the very
material used in the construction. The original rods made use of a Mitsubishi
material called Pyrofil™ carbon fiber which exhibited high dimensional
stability, rigidity, and overall fatigue strength, which is what gave the rods
their excellent lifting power.
A look at the Levante Shakeyhead
rod. Plenty of use of carbon fiber here!
The new 2019
Levante Series now feature a completely new high density blank material and construction with
micro pitch taping, and while the company is keeping the details of this design
under wraps, the new blanks are clearly lighter and more crisp feeling. The
lighter blanks allowed the company to design rods that were even closer to their
intended application, so much so that they were able to mirror the actions of
the more expensive Orochi XX line, hence the matching names and powers.
As we begin testing it is immediately noticeable how much lighter and
more refined they feel versus the previous generation
described how decreasing the weight in the new Levante blanks was critical, and by
successfully doing this gave Megabass the room in which to
adjust the balance points within each rod model to aid with their intended
casting form. In some of the rods the bending apex points shifted toward the
butt section as load is applied, which mandated moving the guides by a few
millimeters to achieve that perfect casting feel for the intended application.
This meticulous back and forth process took over two years of development.
The spinning rods feature a hook
hanger positioned within the split grip
specifically for applications is nothing new, but few manufacturers can do it
with as much attention to not only applications, but actual baits, like Megabass
can. How many rod manufacturers do you know that also actually design and produce
baits? With in-house offerings like the Vision 110 Series of jerkbaits, or I-Slide
swimbaits, Megabass is able to design rods like the Jerkbait Special and
Leviathan which are optimized for casting and retrieving these specific baits, as well
as gives the designers added insight into the ideal action for handling the entire class of lures.
While we are still testing
sensitivity the new Levante rods definitely feel more crisp
In terms of
styling the new Levante rods make the old ones look plain in comparison. The
refreshed line now features much more of what anglers recognize as signature
Megabass elements, including the spiral architect reel seat, aluminum and carbon
fore-grip elements, additional purple threading, and even a color shifting
finish above the handle section. Another example of the detail in design is the
use of Fuji stainless steel gunmetal matte guides, which were selected to reduce
any glare as the rod is cast or retrieved.
The Fuji stainless steel guides
have a gunmetal matte finish to reduce glare
In total there
are twelve new rods in the series including nine casting rods with familiar
actions and names like the Diablo Spec-R and Perfect Pitch as well as three
spinning rods including the Whipsnake and Kenichi's personal favorite, the
powerful Enforcer. All models retail for the same price of $199 dollars each.
The casting rods also feature a
hook hanger located directly behind the main EVA handle grip
So how do they
compare with the Orochi XX rods? The new Levante rods are a step up from the
last generation, a big step up in terms of styling, weight, and handling. While
we are still testing how they compare in terms of lifting power and sensitivity
we asked Kenichi how they compared to the recently introduced Orochi XX rods
from his perspective.
“The Orochi XX
rods will still outperform the Levante rods by 20 percent, which means they will
showcase a more ideal action and power for the same taper. Sensitivity is also
superior on the more expensive line, and they will feel crisper overall,” Kenichi
explained. “This 20 percent delta will be noticeable by 80 percent of the anglers who
focus on refining their craft in each application.”
Two weeks in and I am already
finding a whole lot to like about the new Levante rods, including the overall handling,
smooth casting, refreshed styling, and the fact that the lifting power has remained fully intact,
with the lighter blanks
A Better Levante? I have only
spent a few weeks with the newly refreshed Levante rods but there is no doubt
they are better in just about every way than the last generation. The 2019
Levante rods simply look and feel more like a “Megabass” rod should. The fact
that they retail for the same price as the previous series was a must do, and
just how much more refinement and sheer fun factor the company was able to
infuse into the line at this same price point is impressive. While they were
designed here in the U.S. the new Levante rods are already slated for
international sales, and why not? No other rod line in the company’s portfolio
says “welcome to the world of Megabass” better than Levante.
Looking for the Megabass Levante Series?
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