Kioti Tractors clocks up thousands of worry-free hours for vineyard

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Fleurieu Vintners Kioti fleet Fleurieu Vintners Kioti fleet Fleurieu Vintners Kioti fleet
Fleurieu Vintners Kioti fleet Fleurieu Vintners Kioti fleet Fleurieu Vintners Kioti fleet
Fleurieu Vintners Kioti fleet Fleurieu Vintners Kioti fleet Fleurieu Vintners Kioti fleet

Wine producer Fleurieu Vintners now has a fleet of five Kioti tractors and manager Mick McDade says they’re “bullet proof”

Kioti Tractors clocks up thousands of worry-free hours for vineyard
Fleurieu Vintners Kioti tractor fleet

Five Kioti tractors have added up to more than 45,000 trouble-free hours of hard work for Fleurieu Vintners in South Australia.

Based in Clarendon, with 420ha of vineyards in and around the Fleurieu Peninsula, Fleurieu Vintners crushes 5,000 tonnes of grapes each year and has its own winery producing high-grade wines including the popular Blackbilly and Clarence Hill labels.

Vineyard Manager Mick McDade has worked for the company for 10 years, looking after the Currency Rise and California Rise vineyards.

"When I first arrived, there were some pretty unreliable tractors here," he recalls. "A neighbouring vineyard had two of the South Korean Kioti Daedong tractors and they recommended them as good machines."

McDade says the reputation of Perkins engines for reliability was another strong factor in their favour.

"We bought our first Kioti Daedong, a DK90 model, from Tony Cross at Central Hills Machinery in 2002. You do your research but there's always an element of risk when you buy a new machine. You can't know exactly how it will go. Well, that DK90 has done 18,000 hours for us over ten years and given us no trouble at all," he says.

A few months after buying the DK90, Fleurieu Vintners bought a DK80, which has since clocked up 14,000 hours.

These two early tractors played a big role in establishing vineyard beds, trellises and tracks as the property grew from 52ha to 180ha.

As vineyard operations continued to expand, Fleurieu Vintners added another DK90 to the fleet and to date it has given them 11,000 worry-free hours of hard work.

In 2010, the purchase of two Kioti DX9010 machines brought the fleet up to five cabin tractors.

McDade says they are averaging 1,500-1,800 hours a year on all the tractors.

"These are the kind of hours a contractor would do, yet the only problem we've ever had is when a seal went on a pump and Centrals Hills Machinery had it fixed in two hours, even though they are 60km away from the vineyard," he says.

"I can't understand why anyone wouldn't go straight for a Kioti, save themselves a lot of trouble and save a lot of money too."

Fleurieu Vintners has a self-propelled Grégoire G120 grape harvester and also a Grégoire G65 trailed harvester which is pulled by one of its Kioti DX9010 tractors.

"We use all the tractors with three-tonne spreaders, turbo sprayers, slashers, chaser bins, three-tonne tipping gondolas and for front-end loader work," McDade says.

"We work them hard, service them regularly and we only buy genuine Kioti parts.

"The earlier tractors were simple and tough and very reliable. We have many different operators at harvest time and we didn't want to buy anything over-complicated.

"The newer DX9010 models are more refined when it comes to comfort and technology but still very easy to use. And they're bulletproof, even if the operator isn't as experienced.

"I think Kioti tractors are very economical compared to other brands. People can pay a lot more money to get anywhere near this kind of quality and reliability. When you get long-standing great performance like this from Kioti, day in and day out, why would you look at another brand?"

A leader in mechanised farming equipment for almost 70 years, Daedong Industrial Co, South Korea, has built its success on unswerving attention to the needs of the farmer.

The company's responsiveness to complex market challenges and commitment to R&D investment and manufacturing excellence has led to steadily increasing demand for Kioti tractors across the world.

To find out more visit www.kiotitractors.com.au.

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