Tested to the limit

Tom Rhodesin Machinery & Mechanics

Groundcare and utility vehicle specialist, Euromec Contracts Limited, invited over 70 customers for a day of off-road fun at Rockingham Castle, where Kubota's market-leading range of utility vehicles were put through their paces at the historic Leicestershire destination.

Located a few miles north of the former steel town of Corby, the 11th Century castle grounds were the scene of Euromec's annual ride and drive day - an event which offers the dealer a chance to say thank you to its loyal client base and give its customers the opportunity to try before they buy.

A key Kubota dealer for over eight years, Euromec has enjoyed a long and fruitful relationship with the Thame-based manufacturer, who supplied its full range of utility vehicles for the day, including its popular RTV900, the 4-seater RTV1140 and its two newest models - the petrol-fuelled RTV400 and RTV500.

"There's been a massive boom in the utility vehicle market in the last few years, with Euromec recording a 40% increase in sales of our RTVs," explains Tim Yates, Kubota Dealer Manager. "We know we've got one of the best products on the market, with standard fittings like Hydrostatic transmission being just one of the many stand-out features across the range."

Rockingham Castle is home to Land Rover's punishing The Land Rover Experience course, a hair-raising circuit designed to push its 4x4 vehicles to the limit. The diminutive RTVs more than held their own, though, with many of the guests amazed with the handling and robustness of the range; with the braking capabilities and Kubota's unique Hydrostatic transmission singled out as firm favourite among testers.

Euromec Managing Director, Peter Crewe, who established the Market Harborough-based groundcare, maintenance and utility vehicle dealership in 1986, was keen to stress the importance of utility vehicles to his business:"Utility vehicles have transformed the market in many ways, taking over where the quad bike started.

They are incredibly popular in the estates and equestrian market, with end users demanding a machine that has an excellent load capacity, is safe and can get them across sites quickly and efficiently - Kubota's range does this.

"The demand for Kubota's RTV range has rocketed in the last 12 months and the launch last year (2013) of its new petrol-fuelled vehicle has boosted this further as the RTV400 and RTV500 have a greater upper speed limit, which appeals to the younger operator. The rugged qualities that are synonymous with the Kubota brand are very popular with our customers and the feedback we've had since the testing day has reinforced this."

Euromec secured 10 sales as a direct result of the ride and drive day, and enquires have been flowing ever since, with some excellent feedback being reported from some key customers.

Andrew Harding from Qube Property Management commented: "We've enjoyed a great relationship with Euromec for several years and have purchased a number of the Kubota RTV vehicles from them for use across our client portfolio, namely to tow refuse bins from below ground storage areas.

"We were delighted to be invited to test the vehicles in an off road capacity, which is something none of our client's vehicles ever do. It was an extremely valuable exercise to test the vehicles to their full capacity and ultimately it was a great day and we will be recommending further vehicle purchases throughout 2014."

The Kubota RTV range benefits from its versatility, and its popularity is growing fast in the private estates sector, as well as across the groundcare, local authority, property management and municipal arenas.

The private market is a key one for Euromec, and the reaction from clients attending the testing day indicates that this is likely to continue.

"It was enormously valuable to be given the opportunity to try the full range of these remarkable vehicles in such demanding surroundings, and to talk to other customers about their experiences," explains James Councell, who uses a range of Kubota machines for maintenance of his own private estate. "It is this investment in pre sales service that really makes Euromec stand out from the crowd and the reason why customers like me continue to place our trust in their recommendations."

Overall, Crewe is delighted with the reception: "In addition to the immediate sales, the whole event has also helped improve and strengthen our ties with local schools, colleges, universities and parks departments.

"As well as promoting the Kubota RTV range, the ride and drive day also gave us the opportunity to cross sell Kubota's other market leading solutions, including its high performance ride-on mowers, right through to its compact and higher horse power tractors.

The results of this have led to the trial of Kubota tractors at numerous prospective sites, along with potential sales leads from several attendees for other pieces of kit."


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Machinery & mechanics