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Reel Review

Not just for Saltwater, the Daiwa Zillion Coastal (continued)


Durability cont'd: We did not find any rust at all on any of the anodized components of the reel and we were surprised how well the components held up even after deliberate neglect. Like most of the other Daiwa reels at this level the Zillion proves to be both refined and long lasting, we didn’t experience any failures and the master gearing continues to line up and provide a smooth retrieve even after a full season of use. 


A Lake Falcon Bass takes the bait...


Price & Applications: Even though the Zillion Coastal is designed as an inshore reel there is absolutely nothing stopping this reel from being a great freshwater reel. It does everything the standard Zillion can do, only it is designed to better handle the elements. This proved to be an excellent crossover reel and anglers that enjoy fishing both fresh and saltwater will find that the Zillion Coastal has the flexibility to do both well. So well in fact that I wish I had an extra spool so I could have one with straight mono for freshwater and another pre-spooled with straight braid or a fluorocarbon topshot.


...and the Zillion Coastal is fast enough to take up slack line quickly in the event fish turn and head right to the boat


At a MSRP of 299.95 the Zillion Coastal is 30 dollars more than both the standard Zillion and Crazy Cranker reels. We think this is a reasonable price to pay for the extra corrosion resistance put into the frame and anodized components. There is however a lot of competition at this price point and anglers can also choose the Shimano Chronarch for the same price or the aggressively priced Revo Inshore which is 70 dollars less and comes with an extra power handle.


The Zillion Coastal features a swept handle that Daiwa states exhibits "less wobble and better winding leverage," we think it just looks cool


At the end of the day it will probably come down to which camp you come from, are you a Shimano, Daiwa or Abu fan? The Zillion Coastal is a good reel but it sports the same basic features and ergonomics of Daiwa’s other reels, nothing is added that is so radical that it will get anglers to switch sides just yet.


Anodized aluminum guard fins protect the top of the reel


Daiwa did showcase a new black colored Zillion reel at the Classic, albeit behind glass this sneak peek caused quite a stir among anglers that attended the event. Likely a supertuned composite based reel this new Zillion will most likely break the 300 dollar mark and fill the gap in between the Zillion and ultra premium Steez series. So it looks like there will be at least one more addition to the Zillion series on top of the Coastal in the very near future.


Ratings: (We've re-calibrated our ratings standard for 2008 and have included a key at the bottom of the following matrix as a guide):

Daiwa Zillion Coastal Ratings (?/10)

Construction/Quality The Zillion family of reels make use of quality materials and the Coastal model is no different. Excellent quality throughout 9
Performance The Zillion Coastal performed well in most categories. We wish that it had a beefed up drag to handle bigger inshore species. The ultra fast gear ratio is better for shallow water fishing than cranking up fish from vertical fishing applications 8
Price The Zillion Coastal costs more than the competition and the Abu Garcia Revo Inshore is 70 dollars less and even comes with an extra power handle. 6
Features The Zillion Coastal is full of features including a ultra high speed gear ratio, the Magforce-Z cast control system, anodized aluminum guard rails and CRBB corrosion resistant ball bearings 9
Design (Ergonomics) Good ergonomics and an extra bonus point here because this particular reel doesn't just compete with other baitcasters but larger saltwater reels that anglers normally use for inshore applications 8
Application The Zillion Coastal is not just for saltwater, it does everything the standard Zillion can do, only it is designed to better handle the elements. This proved to be an excellent crossover reel and anglers that enjoy fishing both fresh and saltwater will find that the Zillion Coastal has the flexibility to do both equally well 9.5

Total Score

Ratings Key: 1 = terrible : 2 = poor : 3 = lacking : 4 = sub par : 5 = mediocre : 6 = fair : 7 = good : 8 = great : 9 = excellent : 10 = unbelievable!
For More Details of the updated rating system visit our explanation here


Pluses and Minuses:

                 Plus                                    Minus

J Top notch construction and refinement L Wish it had a souped up drag for inshore applications
J Ultra fast speed 7.3:1 gear ratio L More expensive than competing inshore reels
J Externally adjustable cast control system  
J Extremely refined for inshore fishing  
J Not just for saltwater, great crossover reel  


The Zillion Coastal may be designed for saltwater environments but is equally as good for freshwater applications, this is a great double duty reel that showcases plenty of refinement


Conclusion: So there are a lot of Zillions, but there are a lot of Zillion fans too. The new Coastal is basically a high speed Zillion with corrosion resistant provisions and a slick new color scheme. Though designed for anglers that fish inshore this reel has “BASS” written all over it and is a great reel for freshwater anglers looking for a high speed Zillion now that the Limited Edition is gone. This is a great choice for anglers that enjoy fishing in brackish water or those that are looking for a reel that can pull double duty in both fresh and saltwater applications. The Zillion Coastal may be a little more expensive than standard Zillions but it just might be the most refined inshore baitcaster on the market, now only if Daiwa could beef up that drag a bit. If you’re a Daiwa fan then the Coastal is yet another Zillion that you might want to add to your collection, and if you picked up one of these capable reels just to get the cool new color scheme, well I wouldn’t blame you. This is yet another quality reel from the ever growing Zillion series and it looks like we will have another one to survey come ICAST.


Looking for the Daiwa Zillion Coastal?
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