With every industry facing budget cuts, visitors to Saltex 2011 know that any new equipment they specify will have to work harder than ever.
With this in mind, Kubota Tractor and Groundcare is offering a range of solutions from affordable, versatile equipment to competitive finance to ensure specifiers can make savings while getting to grips with their groundcare requirements.
Local authority cuts are particularly well documented with many looking to reduce the frequency of their mowing cycles, but this means that their traditional fleet, typically cylinder mowers, are now inadequate for the task in hand.
As a result, Kubota is exhibiting a range of professional ride-on mowers that can cope as easily with the rough as they can with sports surfaces. Among these are the popular G Series professional ride-on mowers, which are available with 23 and 26hp engines and 48" and 54" cutting decks respectively. They feature hydrostatic power steering and low vibration levels for maximum comfort. Other ride-on mowers on display will include the diesel F3680, ZD326 and GR1600 models, as well as the newly launched GR2120 and the T1880 petrol garden mowers.
These will be complemented by a variety of tractors which are perfect for use by professional groundsmen and greenkeepers at golf courses, local authorities and contractors. These will include the M40 Series agricultural tractors; mid-range models including the GL40 Series, L4100 and L3200; compact tractors, including the STV Series, B30 and B20 Series; and the BX2350 sub-compact tractor.
Of course, no Kubota stand would be complete without the popular RTV900 all-terrain utility vehicle – a machine that’s regarded by many as the linchpin of their entire fleet. Equally suited to traversing off road as it is to running on tarmac, the 21 hp four-wheel drive RTV900 features a steel hydraulically-tipped rear cargo box, which thanks to a 500kg load capacity (1,100lbs) can cater for a euro-pallet, allowing users to transport fertilizer and other materials without first needing to unload the pallet.
While Kubota’s equipment is affordably priced for the features on offer, any specifier knows that life-time cost is an important consideration – and, with oil prices spiralling upwards, fuel economy is a major factor in calculations. Kubota machines have been designed to offer optimum power to weight ratios, ensuring maximum fuel efficiency. Precision engineering allows the company to extract high horsepower from a relatively small engine displacement and because designers work hard to keep weight low, fuel efficiency isn’t such a problem for Kubota customers as it might be for those who’ve purchased a heavier machine.
"After all," said David Blackwood, sales and marketing manager of Kubota Tractor and Groundcare, "you can always add weight for a specific job if you need more traction, but you can’t reduce it if the machine is heavy in the first place, so you’ll be stuck with high fuel consumption."
Another key benefit that Kubota will be promoting throughout the show is that their equipment range offers a machine for all seasons – for instance, its tractors can be fitted with a range of implements such as loaders and mowers, whilst the B Series compact tractors, F3680 ride-on mower and the RTV900 can all be fitted with snow blades.
Many contractors and local authority users have also reported that cut and collect mowers such as the G Series are not only effective at picking up grass clippings, but clear leaves too, effectively eliminating the need for separate machines for each job.
"Our machines are not only affordable for their specification, but they’re economical to run and extremely versatile, making them a useful addition to any groundcare fleet," said David. "This together with the fact that they command excellent residual value ensures Kubota equipment offers some of the lowest life time costs on the market."
To further help its business customers, Kubota has recently brokered a deal with SG Equipment finance to offer a range of subsidised low interest finance package on a number of its most popular machines.
"We’ve worked hard to source a finance partner that will give our business customers access the latest equipment without committing a large capital outlay. In fact, repayments on some of our most popular professional ride-on mowers start from as little as £60 a month – equivalent to less than four sets of green fees."