Hearing there's a rustler around is not always good news. There are family trees that contain their fair share of rustlers - yes those horse thieves no one talks about. But a rustler is more than someone who purloins cattle or horses without compensation, a rustler is also an energetic, driving person. And that's a definition the folks at New Holland can get behind with their new Rustler 850 utility vehicle.
No, the name is not new to the brand, but the vehicle that carries that badge is. New Holland turned to Textron Specialized Vehicles to partner and develop a new utility vehicle for customers. The machine debuted during the National Farm Machinery Show and Farm Industry News took some time to learn more.
While the Rustler 850 - the only model in the line for now - is based on the proven Textron chassis (the company makes the Bad Boy line of utility vehicles) there's plenty of New Holland DNA in the final product, according to Todd Debock, with New Holland. "We went with a full size bed that can carry a full pallet," DeBock said. "That's a 1000-pound capacity bed with 1,500-pounds of carrying capacity. And it can tow 2,000 pounds."
The nose of the new Rustler 850 went through some changes with dealer input to achieve the right look for the New Holland line.
Power comes from a 62 hp electronic fuel-injected engine capable of hauling passengers at 45 mph. "Our prior machine was capable of 25 mph," DeBock said. "We've made a quicker machine because that's what customers told us."
There are utility vehicles that have higher top speeds, but DeBock explained that New Holland sought a middle ground, providing ag customers more speed for transport while not reaching up to the "sport" level machines. This is a machine that started down the development track 18 months ago and last fall dealers were shown the rig at a training event.
Listening to dealers
"We had key dealers evaluate the machine," DeBock said. "We want this machine to be from all angles a New Holland machine."
In fact, the first front end on the vehicle ended up requiring work - call it a machine nose job - to get the final look you see here. "We looked for something that better matched our T6/T7 look," DeBock said. That doesn't mean cat eyes for lights, but rather a black hood inset and a more aggressive headlight pattern.
And the Rustler 850 comes with electronic power steering as well as a much upgraded suspension system both front and rear. This appears to be a much smoother riding machine (FIN only got a static view). "This machine has twin arm four-wheel independent suspension," DeBock said. Safety features include a rollover protective structure, a three-point seatbelt system, front-mounted steel brush guard, headlights and brake lights.
Raven Honsaker, director of product strategy for commercial business, Textron Specialized Vehicles, was on hand for the NFMS launch. She noted that there are more models in the future - including a four-seater. And there are more attachments on the way.
For an ag crowd your machine needs extra hauling room, that's why New Holland designers went for the pallet-sized bed on the new Rustler 850.
"We have the LED light package on this machine," she said, pointing to the Rustler on display. "And it has a winch too." Buyers can expect more to come on the attachments score given that many of this rigs get tricked out with add-ons for users. A cab with heater is under development and there's an electric bed dump under development.
And dealers are asking for more, like on-road kits with special lighting too. This first model Rustler 850 will eventually have a range of add-ons available. And while the first model is blue, you can count on the fact that a camo package is on the way.
Honsaker explained that the machine features on-demand four-wheel drive with a progressive spring rate so the ride doesn't get worse when it's not carrying a load.
During the training event where dealers had time with early build machines, DeBock said they liked what they saw. "This machine has a lot of torque and it really moves down the road," he said.
And that's what you'd expect from a Rustler.
The machine will be available this spring, learn more at newholland.com.