Thursday, October 28, 2010

A surprise ending...

After all my sniveling about our machinery troubles, it is only fair to report a remarkable effort by our (new) JD dealer to resolve our problems.  While the turbo problem may actually be a combination problem with a fuels system valve (don't ask - I just pretended to understand), my uncertainty about the future of that machine coupled with a need for more capacity had us looking to trade.

The dealer responded with a reasonable offer to trade our current heads for a new, larger cornhead and platform, and then trade our 800-hr. 9570 for a 600-hr. 9670 straight up.  As in no boot.  As in an even swap.

We were floored and deeply grateful. And since we will be adding a new truck (or two) the budget was much happier too.

(I have to admit, though, that after driving a 7120 the cab on the 9670 seems claustrophobic, but maybe next time.)

I hate to think I have become so skeptical and/or pessimistic that I routinely expect the worst, but when vendors make these kinds of efforts, it is certainly trust-building.  I suspect as dealer ranks thin out, both sales and service will be taking an incremental step forward for all of us.  Only the really good survive now.

This is just my impression, but I suspect we are not alone in shuffling equipment. I could see a repeat of the 2008 combine shortage issue again.  Although come to think of it we're not shipping nearly as many overseas as we were then.  Still, $6 corn and $12 beans are doubtless energizing machinery sales right now.

The depreciation giveaway isn't hurting either.


Anonymous said...

John I now expect a lot of this dealers other customers will be making a visit there too trade with deals like that-regards-kevin

Chuck said...

"I suspect as dealer ranks thin out, both sales and service will be taking an incremental step forward for all of us. "

My experience has been as the dealer ranks continue to thin out sales and service take an incremental step backwards.

There's essentially no competition. I have one green dealer, one red dealer, one yellow dealer, etc within a reasonable distance for service.

What incentive does a dealer have to provide me exemplary service? Only the distant possibility that when I trade combines (or whatever) 10 years down the road, I'll switch colors.

And as the dealerships get more consolidated and larger I notice an increasing distance between sales, parts, and service within a dealership. I'll rant to the sales guy about problems with the service department, and he'll rant to the dealership management, but nothing happens. In a big dealership covering half a state, one customer's complaints aren't significant.

I think the consolidation of dealerships is inevitable, but not good.

John Phipps said...


What I am seeing is brand competition vs. dealer competition. As long as you are willing to switch, I think we will have at least some leverage.