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Taranaki contractor Mike Silson has owned a huge number of New Holland machines in the past 20-odd years. He loves the brand and the service he gets from his local Norwood Farm Machinery Centre branch.

Mike and his wife Claire operate Riverlea Contractors from their home in Hawera, south of Mount Taranaki. They offer a full range of agricultural services including cultivation, harvesting and baling.

They currently own 16 New Holland tractors in a wide range of models, as well as round and square balers. The tractor models include T6040, T7060, T7.210, T6080, T7.200, T6030, TVT190, T7030, TS115, T7.270 and T6070.

He has looked at other tractor brands many times over the years, but has continually chosen New Holland tractors because of the features they bring to his operation. “We have been running New Holland since they bought out Fiat and Ford 20-odd years ago,” he says. “It’s a good brand. They are comfortable tractors to work with, and the service that Norwood Farm Machinery provides us is excellent.”

Mike has selected his tractors with specific jobs in mind. For example, he bought the T7270s with Auto Command transmission for doing silage stacks. “I believe the Auto Command transmission is the strongest transmission out there, which is why we chose them to do the hard work,” he says.

Riverlea Contractors also has three New Holland BR750A round balers, a BR760 round baler, two BB940 large square balers, and a BB1270 large-square baler. Mike says both the round and square balers make a dense bale and are great machines to run. “The square balers in particular are high-density machines,” he says. “The BB1270 is very high-capacity and the productivity through it is excellent. New Holland just builds a really good baler.”

One of the key reasons Mike and Claire have been loyal to New Holland is the customer support he receives from Norwood Farm Machinery in Hawera. “The support you get makes a difference in the brand you own. We get great backup from our dealer,” he says. Mike sees his dealer has often as once a week during the season.

“If I’m looking for a replacement tractor, the salesman comes in and we do a tractor build. We sit down and custom design a machine to what we want for our requirements, then we indent our tractors from New Holland. There are always a few teething issues but they’ve met our expectations.”

Mike says Norwood Farm Machinery responds quickly if there is ever a breakdown or emergency, and he finds staff to be caring to their customers. “They understand the pressures that contractors are under and the urgency of getting machinery up and running again.”

Mike uses genuine New Holland parts and high-grade New Holland lubricants in his tractor fleet because it reduces his servicing requirements from 300-hour intervals down to 600 hour-intervals, which saves him money.

“We have had various demos of different tractors coming through from other machinery companies, but we’ve always chosen New Holland for the backup support that Norwood Farm Machinery gives us, and I feel that New Holland are a good solid tractor.”

New Holland is imported in New Zealand by C B Norwood Distributors Ltd.

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