Czech tractor manufacturer, Zetor has announced completion of what it terms a ‘comprehensive market assessment and reorganisation’ and is poised to set the brand on what Nigel Wilson, their Sales Director for UK and Ireland, says will be ‘a new and more progressive path’.
Foreseeing what they believe will be a ‘high opportunity’ for Zetor in Ireland, the company is underpinning its plans on a realigned and reinvigorated 10-strong dealer network, with more appointments to come, and a vastly-expanded model range that includes units not previously part of Zetor’s offering here.
To the fore representing Zetor on-the-ground in Ireland will be their sales manager Gerry Rabbitte, supported on the after-sales side by their technical support specialist, Eamon Cleary.
Responding to some recent online media reports that Rabbitte says were ‘somewhat wide of the mark in matters of opinion and detail’, the plan being pursued by Zetor will be to ‘revive and build upon the tremendous position that Zetor holds in the minds of Irish farmers since the brand was first introduced in Ireland in the 1940s’.
Spearheaded by a dealer network that includes some new to the brand and others loyal to it over decades, the intention over time will be to increase the existing complement up to 20 in number with vacancies remaining to be filled Dublin, Meath, Cavan and Monaghan and in Northern Ireland.
Those currently appointed to represent the brand are: Donegal Farm Machinery (Letterkenny), Jacob Farm Services (Enniscrone), Kevin Brogan Tractors (Roscommon), Brogan Tractor Sales (Tuam), Western Tractors Ltd. (Ballinasloe), Alan King Agri Sales Ltd. (Tipperary), O’Flynn’s Garage (Ballyporeen), Eardly Agri Services Ltd (Kilkenny), West Waterford Agri Sales (Tallow) and Goff Agri & Plant Sales (Wexford).
On the model front – spanning the 40hp to 170hp power band – main focus will fall on their popular 80hp MAJOR series, now being manufactured in an attractive and trendy bodywork which follows the new ZETOR design language prepared by legendary Italian design studio, Pininfarina. High on the list also will be the latest generation 76hp to 117hp PROXIMA, the 96hp to 147hp FORTERRA and the most powerful six-cylinder, 150hp or 171hp, top-of-the-range CRYSTAL.
Completing the line-up are two models less well-known here – the compact and manoeuvrable 43hp to 50hp UTILIX, a model designed for work on small farms, parks, gardens and sports facilities, and a 67hp HORTUS, a model equipped for front loader work and fitted with 24/24 transmission in mechanical or PowerShuttle format.
With more than 50,000 units sold since first introduced here over 50 years ago, Zetor has always been viewed as a long-life, reliable and easy-on-the-pocket workhorse with many models introduced in earlier years still in regular use on farms around the country – spare parts for which are available through the Zetor dealer network.
Now configured to be more competitive than before, and offering what Zetor claims will be ‘greater value to customers’, dealers will have the additional support of a new finance partnership between Zetor and Finance Ireland through which customer purchases and dealer stocking arrangements can be funded.
With distribution now under the direct control of Zetor HQ in Brno, Czech Republic, future logistical arrangements regarding model supply, parts distribution and administration will be managed through the company’s UK base in Coventry.