Deere’s new two-speed skid steers

Agriculture.com Staff 11/04/2010 @ 9:44am

In response to customers’ needs for faster travel speed across jobsites, John Deere is introducing a two-speed option to its mid-frame 318D and 320D skid steer loader models.

The new option, which will be available by year’s end, increases ground speed by as much as 62 percent on both manual and E/H controls machines, from 6.8 mph to 11 mph. It’s engineered to provide a second gear for a variety of work, including landscaping, highway and bridge, and municipal.

“Faster travel means more productivity,” said Gregg Zupancic, product marketing manager, skid steers and compact track loaders for John Deere Construction & Forestry. “With more speed, customers will see faster cycle times working with trucks on the jobsite or carrying materials. They’ll also spend less time traveling between jobs and find it easier to roll snow off the blade while plowing.”

Shift on-the-go capability allows operators to kick into higher travel speeds with a simple flip of a toggle switch on the left-hand joystick. Electronically controlled shifting allows for seamless transition during upshifts and downshifts. “Smooth shifting helps eliminate bucket spillage, and ensures that more loads are spread or dumped when and where you want them,” Zupancic said.

The 318D and 320D are part of Deere’s customer-inspired D-Series skid steer line, featuring 24-percent larger cabs and six more inches of headroom than their predecessors. They are also quieter because of a hydraulic fan drive and engine auto-idle, and positively pressurized for better air temperature control. A larger door opening makes them easier to get in and out of.

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