Ko­matsu For­est dom­i­nates the Aus­tralian For­warder mar­ket for over 20 years

Australian Forests and Timber - - FORESTRY MACHINES -

KO­MATSU, FOR­MERLY Val­met, was late to en­ter the Aus­tralian For­warder mar­ket but was quick to be­come the mar­ket leader since the early 90s. This was first achieved with the 892 fol­lowed by the in­tro­duc­tion of the black 890 in the 90’s and 890.1 in early 2000. This was quickly fol­lowed by the 890.2 and the 890.3. The 890.1 was the first Nordic For­warder tri­alled and tested in Aus­tralia be­fore its global re­lease.

New Ko­matsu 895 much larger than pre­vi­ous model Ko­matsu 890.3

There have been well over 500 Val­met / Ko­matsu For­warders de­liv­ered into the Aus­tralian mar­ket with more than 220 of the 890 Dot Series since its re­lease in 2000. This in­cluded the 890.1, 890.2, and the 890.3 which gained a rep­u­ta­tion as one of the best ever 18 tonne For­warders to be re­leased.

The ben­e­fits of a high pop­u­la­tion are in­creased parts avail­abil­ity and a strong de­mand in the used mar­ket es­pe­cially low hour 890.3’s which com­mand a high re­sale value com­pared to low pop­u­la­tion For­warders. Un­for­tu­nately, Aus­tralian forestry ma­chine sales slowed dur­ing the GFC pe­riod which co­in­cided with the de­vel­op­ment of the Ko­matsu 895 in Swe­den which was re­lease in late 2012.

The on­go­ing mar­ket de­mand for a larger For­warder saw the Ko­matsu 895 grow to 20 tonne ca­pac­ity and it wasn’t achieved by just ex­pend­ing the log bunks and in­creas­ing horse­power. This ca­pac­ity increase re­quired a to­tal re­think on the pow­er­train es­pe­cially the diffs, bo­gies and wheel size to han­dle the increase in power and weight trans­fer to the ground. In fact, Ko­matsu For­est work­ing with Nokia Tyres had to de­velop a to­tal new tyre size 780/50 x 28.5 to meet th­ese de­mands as the 750/50 x 25.5 cre­ated ex­ces­sive tyre/rim slip­page and wear the in­creased ca­pac­ity. This new larger tyre size is avail­able in both “TRS” and “F” style tread pat­terns with the lat­ter suit­able for tracks

■ The 895 has also proven to be very ver­sa­tile han­dling any thin­nings job

■ New Ko­matsu 895 much larger than pre­vi­ous model Ko­matsu 890.3

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