Intex Explorer vs Challenger: Which K2 Kayak is Better?

Being out on the water is the perfect escape from daily stresses. You can take advantage of amazing scenery, appreciate nature, and get some exercise (or just a gentle paddle is you prefer). Kayaking can be great fun for all the family, and it doesn’t have to cost a fortune. Intex is an expert in creating outdoor water sports equipment. They have a good reputation for quality and cost.

Today, we are going to look at two kayaks from Intex, Intex Explorer K2 vs Challenger K2. We will look at what features they share and how they differ. Everything will be taken into consideration, from materials to appearance, and value for money. We will add a comparison chart and some pros and cons before we offer our final verdict.

Intex Explorer vs Challenger

Despite looking quite different, there are a number of similarities between the Intex Explorer K2 and the Intex Challenger K2, so we will start here.

Intex Explorer vs Challenger – Similarities

Quick Glance

Name
Intex Explorer K2 Kayak, 2-Person Inflatable Kayak Set with Aluminum Oars and High Output Air Pump
Our Pick
Intex Challenger K2 Kayak, 2-Person Inflatable Kayak Set with Aluminum Oars and High Output Air Pump
Image
Intex Explorer K2 Kayak, 2-Person Inflatable Kayak Set with Aluminum Oars and High Output Air Pump
Intex Challenger K2 Kayak, 2-Person Inflatable Kayak Set with Aluminum Oars and High Output Air Pump
Size
10ft 3 inches x 3ft x 1ft 8 inches
11ft 6 inches x 3ft 6 inches x 1ft 3 inches
Weight
30.6lbs
35.53lbs
Color
High visibility yellow
Green with blue features and sporty graphics
Capacity
2-person, maximum 400lbs (180kg)
2-person, maximum 400lbs (180kg)
Chambers
3 inflatable chambers
3 inflatable chambers
Floor
Rigid I-Beam
Rigid I-Beam
Uses
Lakes, calm rivers
Lakes, calm rivers
Materials
Heavy-duty, puncture-resistant vinyl
Rugged, super-tough vinyl, puncture and UV resistant
Skeg
Yes- removable
Yes- removable
Grab lines
Front and rear
Front and rear
Valves
2 Boston valves for quick inflation and deflation
2 Boston valves for quick inflation and deflation
Design Features
Spacious cockpit, upturned nose to prevent splashes
Streamlined, cargo bag on the front
What’s Included
Intex high-output pump, carry bag, repair kit, 2 86-inch aluminum oars, U.S Coast Guard ID
Intex high-output pump, carry bag, repair kit, 2 86-inch aluminum oars, U.S Coast Guard ID
Compliance
ISO 6185/ NMMA/ ABYC
ISO 6185/ NMMA/ ABYC
Warranty
90-day limited warranty
90-day limited warranty
Prime status
Name
Intex Explorer K2 Kayak, 2-Person Inflatable Kayak Set with Aluminum Oars and High Output Air Pump
Image
Intex Explorer K2 Kayak, 2-Person Inflatable Kayak Set with Aluminum Oars and High Output Air Pump
Size
10ft 3 inches x 3ft x 1ft 8 inches
Weight
30.6lbs
Color
High visibility yellow
Capacity
2-person, maximum 400lbs (180kg)
Chambers
3 inflatable chambers
Floor
Rigid I-Beam
Uses
Lakes, calm rivers
Materials
Heavy-duty, puncture-resistant vinyl
Skeg
Yes- removable
Grab lines
Front and rear
Valves
2 Boston valves for quick inflation and deflation
Design Features
Spacious cockpit, upturned nose to prevent splashes
What’s Included
Intex high-output pump, carry bag, repair kit, 2 86-inch aluminum oars, U.S Coast Guard ID
Compliance
ISO 6185/ NMMA/ ABYC
Warranty
90-day limited warranty
Prime status
Our Pick
Name
Intex Challenger K2 Kayak, 2-Person Inflatable Kayak Set with Aluminum Oars and High Output Air Pump
Image
Intex Challenger K2 Kayak, 2-Person Inflatable Kayak Set with Aluminum Oars and High Output Air Pump
Size
11ft 6 inches x 3ft 6 inches x 1ft 3 inches
Weight
35.53lbs
Color
Green with blue features and sporty graphics
Capacity
2-person, maximum 400lbs (180kg)
Chambers
3 inflatable chambers
Floor
Rigid I-Beam
Uses
Lakes, calm rivers
Materials
Rugged, super-tough vinyl, puncture and UV resistant
Skeg
Yes- removable
Grab lines
Front and rear
Valves
2 Boston valves for quick inflation and deflation
Design Features
Streamlined, cargo bag on the front
What’s Included
Intex high-output pump, carry bag, repair kit, 2 86-inch aluminum oars, U.S Coast Guard ID
Compliance
ISO 6185/ NMMA/ ABYC
Warranty
90-day limited warranty
Prime status

Capacity

The Intex Explorer K2 and the Intex Challenger K2 are both 2-person kayaks, although they can also be used by just one person. They have a maximum weight capacity of 400 pounds, 180 kilos.

Ideal Uses

Remember that the Intex Explorer K2 and the Intex Challenger K2 are kayaks and aren’t designed to be used in the same way you would when rafting. These Intex kayaks are suitable for milder waters like lakes and calm rivers.

Inflation

There are three separate inflatable chambers with the Intex Explorer K2 and the Intex Challenger K2. The floor is an inflatable I-beam floor making it more rigid. Both kayaks have 2 inflatable seats with backrests. The seats are both adjustable and removable, so you can take one out or both out if you want to be able to lay down.

The Valves

With two Boston values, the Intex Explorer K2 and the Intex Challenger K2 are quick to inflate and deflate.

The Skeg

The skeg is the small, fin-shaped piece of durable plastic, similar to what you would find under a surfboard. The purpose of the Skeg is to provide directional stability. The Intex Explorer K2 and the Intex Challenger K2 have removable Skegs that click into place.

Intex Explorer Comparison

Grab Lines

On either end of the Intex Explorer K2 and the Intex Challenger K2, there are strong grab lines. These grabs lines will help you move the kayak in the water, but more importantly, they are there as a safety measure in case you capsize or find yourself in an emergency.

Compliance

The Intex Explorer K2 and the Intex Challenger K2 comply with ISO 6185 established by International Organization standards. In the U.S, they are also in compliance with the National Marine Manufacture’s Association (NMMA) and therefore with the U.S. Coast Guard Regulations. They also meet the standards and recommendations of the American Boat and Yacht Council (ABYC).

What’s Included

Whether you choose the Intex Explorer K2 or the Intex Challenger K2, you will get an Intex high-output pump, a carry bag, and a repair kit. They come with two 86-inch aluminum oars and U.S Coast Card Identification.

Intex Challenger Review

Value for Money

Compared with similar products from other brands, the Intex Explorer K2 and the Intex Challenger K2 are good value for money. There is a 90-day limited warranty for both, which we feel could be longer.

Let’s move on to how the two Intex kayaks are different.

Differences Between Intex Explorer and Intex Challenger

Appearance

Intex Challenger K2

There are some things that make the two kayaks look similar, for example, the inflatable seats. Other features are quite different.

Intex Explorer K2

This kayak is bright yellow, and this makes it highly visible in the water. When inflated, the kayak measures 10ft 3 inches x 3ft x 1ft 8 inches. It weighs 30.6lbs.

Intex Challenger K2

Instead of the yellow, the kayak is a green color with features and sporty graphics for maximum visibility. It is slightly longer at 11ft 6 inches x 3ft 6 inches x 1ft 3 inches. It weighs a little more at 35.53lbs.

The Winner Is- The Intex Challenger K2

Materials

They are both made of vinyl, their differences may just be in the wording of the product description, still, we felt it was worth a mention.

Intex Explorer K2

Intex used heavy vinyl and it is puncture resistant.

Intex Explorer K2

Intex Challenger K2

The kayak is made of rugged, super-tough vinyl that is both puncture and UV resistant.

The Winner Is- The Intex Challenger K2

Design Features

Intex Challenger K2 Comparison

Considering how similar they both are, the decision may come down to these differences in design.

Intex Explorer K2

The cockpit of this kayak is designed for comfort and space and certainly does feel roomier. The nose of the kayak is upturned which helps prevent water from splashing over the person sat in the front.

Intex Challenger K2

The overall design of the kayak is more streamlined and gives the impression that it will glide more easily through water. There is a cargo net on the front to keep some of your essential things safe and nearby.

The Winner Is- The Intex Challenger K2

Read next – Intex Mariner vs Excursion: Which Inflatable Boat is Better?

Pros and Cons

If you are still unsure as to whether the Intex Explorer K2 or the Intex Challenger K2 is the right kayak for you, the pros and cons below will give you some further insight.

Intex Explorer K2

Intex Explorer

Pros:

  • It’s a good option for beginners as it is steady and safe
  • It only takes between 8 and 10 minutes to inflate
  • It’s sturdy enough to easily get back in if you want to go for a swim- or you capsize

Cons:

  • The oars are perhaps too short for some adults

Intex Challenger K2

Intex Challenger

Pros:

  • There are no problems with control or skidding and it is easy to maneuver
  • There is a nice amount of legroom
  • Transporting it and setting it up is simple enough for anyone, even grandparents

Cons:

  • The back support could be better

Video Comparison

The Final Verdict

Let’s summaries our opinions. In the first place, we have the appearance and design. In terms of safety, we liked the high visibility yellow and the fact that you can stay a little drier with the Intex Explorer K2. That being said, the overall look of the Intex Challenger K2 was a little cooler, even sleeker. The longer shape also meant that it was a better option for taller people. And the net was not essential but once it was there we realized it was very practical. With these aspects, we preferred the Intex Challenger K2. The design though is very much an individual choice it doesn’t reflect on the quality of the product.

We didn’t notice any difference in the quality of materials. Both felt extremely durable and you would have to be in some pretty extreme environments to cause damage. We loved that the seats could be adjusted and removed. You could take both out and lay fully lay down to relax.

Both came with everything you need. The pump is of good quality and works well but the only thing we would say is that the oars might not be long enough. As this is the same for both kayaks, we can’t favor one over the other. The same can be said with transportation and inflation. They are lightweight and most people will be able to carry either of them in the carry bag. The Intex Explorer K” is a little lighter so it wins the point here.

Although it was a very close call, the final winner was is the Intex Challenger K2. There were three main advantages that helped us come to this decision; the design, the extra legroom, and the cargo net for storage. These things make the Intex Explorer K2 and all-round great buying choice. On the other hand, if you are a family of four, you could buy one of each and enjoy the best of both worlds.


Last update on 2020-06-03 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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