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Taking a Spin with the Evergreen International EsDrive (continued)


Weedlessness: The Evergreen EsDrive comes stock with #2 sized hooks that my fingers can attest, are very sharp. We're uncertain as to the manufacturer of the hooks, but given their size and the slender shape of the bait overall, weedlessness is obviously not a strong suit. Tossed in an area filled with grass and you can rip the bait free rather easily, but get caught in an area with tules or reeds of any sort, and you may end up spending a lot of time up in close, pulling your bait out of the rough. The EsDrive's strong suit is not in a weedless presentation.


Here's a look at the very interesting and functional snap that comes with the Evergreen EsDrive.

Interestingly enough, though Evergreen sells a version these rounded end snaps themselves, the ones pictured above are different


We were able to hunt down an aftermarket package of the same snaps featured on our EsDrive bait pictured above


Application: I had best success with the EsDrive fishing it like a jerkbait with short to medium pauses between successive jerks and also with a slow, steady cadence of jerks similar to fishing a cigar-shaped topwater. Fished in this manner in and around docks or and the edges of weedbeds, I caught maybe a handful of fish, but enough to know this is an effective bait.


Another look at the thick, but replaceable tail section of the EsDrive

Though the joint at the center of the EsDrive is only semi-concealed, Evergreen extends the baits finish all the way into the joint to ensure a consistent profile


Durability: To be honest, I did not fish the EsDrive long enough to give a fair assessment on the bait's durability. What I can say is the plastic tail is pretty thick and seems to stand up well to normal fishing abuse. The snaps that come with this bait are first rate as is the rest of the lure. It is really put together well and the finishes have endured several trips on the water. If you ever do run into the need for them, tail sections are sold separately though they may be difficult to source since the baits, let alone spare parts, are not readily available in the United States.


This particular bait actually came with the Evergreen snap

The EsDrive is available in a variety of interesting colors

Though some of the JDM finishes may not apply to your specific fishing waters, the quality of finish on the EsDrive is undeniable

Availability: Speaking of availability, the EsDrive is not a new bait by any means, but in order to find one, you need to reference stores in Japan that sell and ship products worldwide. This, of course, makes it difficult to find just the right color you may want to buy, but such frustration goes part and parcel with collecting exotic baits. Evergreen International has shown little to no interest in distributing their rods in the United States, but perhaps things will change with their baits should the demand present itself.



Evergreen EsDrive Ratings (?/10)

Construction/Quality Quality build and components 9.5
Performance Bring it back on a lazy, steady retrieve, or twitch it for a bit more erratic action 8
Price As with most JDM products, a bit pricey to bring to US shores 7
Features Sharp, stout hooks, replaceable tail, semi-concealed hinges 8.5
Design (Ergonomics) The inverted bill is intriguing 8.5
Application Very good in and around docks and submerged weedbeds 9

Total Score


Pluses and Minuses:

                 Plus                                    Minus

J Great side to side action L A little hard to get
J Solid Hardware L Doesn't suspend but sinks on pause
J Quality finish  
J Dedicated swimbait gear not necessary  


If you're in search of a quality stringer, the EsDrive can deliver!


Conclusion: The Evergreen EsDrive is a fun bait to toss. It's not the size of some of the big time California swimbaits, so it is easier to get your head around fishing it, yet, it's big enough to help automatically cull some of those peskier, smaller fish if you're in pursuit of a quality stringer. The downside is, given this lure is primarily intended for the Japanese Domestic Market (JDM), it's a bit harder to source especially if you're in search of a specific color. But of course, given the difficulty to source this lure, the likelihood of your partner or rival having the same bait might be minimized. That is, until they read this review.












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