Swedish boat-trim specialist Zipwake has underscored its growing international popularity with a stellar 2023 performance – its best year ever.

The results, says Linda Ahl, Zipwake’s Senior Vice-President, International Sales, Marketing & Communication, “exceeded our expectations – and were very pleasing given the challenging global economic conditions during 2023.

“Growth in the US – our biggest market – was particularly robust. Up 60% in the aftermarket (retrofit) sector, and 30% among OEMs. This is significant because the US boating sector has always leaned towards traditional trim tabs and change has been slow. It now seems many more DIYers – and an increasing number of OEMS – are embracing Zipwake technology.”

Though not quite as spectacular, the European market has also performed well (up 30%). The Interceptor blade technology is now distributed in 34 countries and extends to 24 different products divided across two market sectors – the E-Series for larger vessels (up to 30m) and the S-Series (vessels between 5 and 10m).

While the recreational market accounts for the major share of sales, the products are also used for vessels in the military/ navy, search and rescue, coastguard, police and pilot services.

Blair Geldard is general manager of Zipwake’s New Zealand agent, Advance Trident Ltd. Linda Ahl visited recently to meet with customers and boat manufacturers.

New Zealand is the company’s third biggest market (after the US and Australia). “The country has so many boats,” says Ahl, “and of course the environment is so boating-friendly. Zipwake’s management team loves New Zealand – in fact many people at the company often refer to it as New Zipland!” Auckland’s Advance Trident Ltd (ATL) is Zipwake’s local agent, and general manager Blair Geldard says the growth here is mainly in the smaller S-Series product range – and it’s been consistent with both DIYers and boat manufacturers.


“As with any new product, the market response when we first introduced Zipwake about 11 years ago was luke-warm. It was completely unknown, with no track record. But the Interceptor blade’s performance speaks for itself and has obviously resonated with boaties.”

Market research, he says, points to hands-free, automatic operation as the #1 ‘appeal factor’ for Zipwake enthusiasts. “Start your engine, point your boat in the right direction, open the throttle and relax – from then on the Integrator Module manages boat trim for the entire voyage.”

With built-in electronic features such as accelerometers and 3D gyros, the system adjusts the transom-mounted blades and reacts to changing sea conditions instantly, minimising pitch and roll and helping to keep any sea-sickness at bay. All resulting in a smoother, more pleasant ride – without the hassle of continuous trim tweaks from the skipper.

The boisterous growth in the S-Series sector, he adds, has been boosted by the ease of retrofitting the technology.

Instant trim control available at your fingertips


“DIYers make up a large component of our buyer profile and, because the technology is designed as a plug-and-play kit, it’s easy to connect and configure. The systems are designed for self-install and come in a box with colour-coded compartments containing the different parts.

“It’s intuitive, really easy to follow and assemble. All cables and wires are pre-terminated with NMEA 2000 fittings, so you don’t need an electrician. It’s widely described as ‘automation-in-a-box’.”


Easy configuration, he points out, is another appeal of the system. “Once it’s installed, the user keys in the vessel’s vital statistics – length, beam and weight – and the system automatically calculates the vessel’s pitch curve. Software upgrades are also simple – and typically carried out via the vessel’s MFD or a smart phone.”

The key factor to consider when selecting a Zipwake kit for a vessel, says Geldard, is the real estate on the transom’s trailing edge.

“Typically, the available space dictates the size, width and number of the Interceptor blades. But the decision may also be affected by other features on or near a transom – exhausts and transducers, for example – or even hull features such as prop tunnels.”

Hulls with tunnels are easily catered for with Zipwake’s range of semi-circular blades – a product that’s become particularly popular with owners of Riviera 47s.

The number and size of the blades depends on the available space on the vessel’s transom.


Ahl was in New Zealand recently – meeting with customers and boat manufacturers – and providing product training. Zipwake technology – she says – is all about improving a boat’s ‘ride’ and making the technology as user-friendly as possible.

“I often say to my colleagues: ‘we aren’t selling Interceptors – we are selling great boat rides that offer better safety and efficiency’. I think Zipwake’s auto-performance is one of its most important features because it’s exceptionally easy to use. The trimming decisions are made for you. And you don’t need to reconfigure the system every time you start the engine.


“It all ties into the philosophy of making the boating lifestyle easier and more accessible to people who previously might have found the idea of getting into a boat a little daunting. We have seen the introduction of gyro stabilisers, bow thrusters, autopilots – even auto docking.

“Zipwake’s automatic Interceptor technology is another manifestation of the same, overall concept.”

The new Mini Controller interfaces seamlessly with the Zipwake’s Integrator Module and uses the familiar scroll wheel feature.


Ahl also used her New Zealand visit to introduce the company’s new Mini Controller – an add-on, dashboard-mounted accessory that integrates seamlessly with Zipwake’s Integrator Module (the system’s electronic ‘brain’). Aimed at the more seasoned and professional skipper, the Controller offers more freedom for finetuning a vessel’s trim.

“It’s essentially a fine-tuning feature designed for skippers who – shall we say – know their vessels intimately,” says Ahl.

“Our research indicates that while the Integrator’s automatic control is ideal for the vast majority of users, some skippers want the ability to tweak their vessel’s ‘attitude’ for optimum performance. The Mini Controller provides that enhanced control.

“We believe it will be particularly appealing to professional boat skippers, sports fishermen and owners of commercial vessels. Skippers who know intuitively – from years of experience – the ideal operating set-up for their vessels.”

The Mini Controller – she stresses – is not exclusive to new installations. It’s also an easy upgrade because it interfaces seamlessly with existing Integrator Modules. “It has the same ‘navigation’ or operating system and functionality as the Integrator Module – including the scroll wheel – so it’s instantly familiar.”

The Mini Controller is now available in New Zealand. BNZ