Larger, more powerful equipment was a hallmark of this years’ show, as manufacturers showed off their biggest, mightiest and fastest in response to contractors’ need for greater productivity.
Exmark, Beatrice, Nebraska, unveiled its newest Lazer Z X-Series zero-turn mower that sports a 96-inch deck. That makes it the company’s largest, most powerful gasoline-powered commercial rider so far, one that’s capable of cutting up to nine acres per hour.
Hustler Turf, Hesston, Kansas, debuted its Super 88 zero-turn stand-on mower, featuring the cut quality of a 54-inch deck and the productivity of an 88-inch cut, allowing operators to mow faster and with a smaller crew. It features two engine options: a Vanguard 36-horsepower carbureted gas engine or a Vanguard 37-horsepower EFI engine with an oil guard system.
Also on display at the show was the newly refreshed Hustler Turf Super 104, a wide-area zero-turn rider that offers a 104-inch width of cut; it now has a new Vanguard EFI engine with oil guard.
Bobcat Company, West Fargo, North Dakota, debuted the newest member of its R-Series excavator lineup, the new E26 compact excavator. This unit features a 19% increase in glass surface area, providing operators a panoramic view of the jobsite and a larger front panel for an enhanced view of the attachment. Bobcat also redesigned the cab to be more spacious and provide extra comfort for operators of all sizes. “We listened to contractors, and they said they wanted more room for their feet and legs,” said President and CEO Scott Park.
In the outdoor display area, Caterpillar, Deerfield, Illinois, demonstrated its new Cat 306 CR Mini Hydraulic Excavator. This unit marks Caterpillar’s first-ever entry into the 6-ton class. “Contractors told us they wanted something larger than a 5-ton, but smaller than an 8-ton,” a Caterpillar spokesman said during the demo. A long stick option gives the 306 CR a maximum dig depth of 162 inches and the ability to lift up to 7,839 pounds at a 9.8-foot radius.