2022 Equipment Trends

Stihl Equipment Trends

Landscape Business recently asked representatives from equipment manufacturers throughout the industry to share their insights into market trends and what industry professionals need to know. Responses to our Equipment Trends questions are presented here in the order in which they were received.

Landscape Business (LB): What trends are you seeing with regard to outdoor power equipment for professional lawn and landscape applications (design, manufacturing, supply, sales trends, etc.)?

We’re seeing the trend toward liquid applications to save money and avoid the hassle of cleaning up after granular applications. As a result, equipment is adapting to meet the needs of lawn care operators. At Steel Green, we’ve increased the liquid capacity of the SG46, added an all-liquid machine option, and designed the new SGXL with a 120-gallon liquid capacity.

– Matt Smith, sales manager, Steel Green

Steiner Equipment Trends
Photo provided by Steiner

Latest designs have been revolving around efficiency and helping operators work under the duress of a labor shortage. Equipment that can be used for more than one season of the year is growing in demand, and Steiner can provide that with 24/7, 365, 4-season attitude and capability. Another big trend is how homeowners continue to improve their lawns over the last couple of years due to staying at home. A lot of them will rely on landscapers with the appropriate turf renovation equipment to make their outdoor living areas more enjoyable.

We are also seeing strong interest in electric equipment technology for mowers and turf renovation in certain applications, such as hospitals, schools, etc., where noise or emissions can be a factor. As many businesses consider more sustainable solutions, products that are more environmentally friendly and offer reduced or zero emissions are becoming more desirable. Also, under the current economic conditions with higher fuel prices, electric fuel injected mowers are in higher demand than in previous years.

– Ron Scheffler, senior product manager Doosan Bobcat, Ryan and Steiner

Customers deciding between buying premium professional products built to last versus less costly consumer products, and – as a result – may last just a season.

Higher horsepower on wheeled products to increase productivity. There has also been a shift in interest toward professional robotic mowers as labor has been hard to find, margins are thin, and manufacturers are innovating more in this space.

The trend towards battery products – manufacturers of professional-grade equipment are looking to find ways to make these products more powerful – particularly blowers. Landscapers are starting to look into these products as regulations and local ordinances are put into effect in their area/region.

– Courtney Beall, senior brand manager for Husqvarna Professional

Despite the business challenges of recent years, outdoor power equipment manufacturers still operate around several constants — chiefly, knowing and understanding that the industry is a very seasonal one, and sales are driven largely by weather patterns and weather events. During the past few years, Honda has adopted the operating mantra “expect the unexpected.” Honda has a positive outlook on the commercial outdoor power equipment market and remains focused on providing customers ease of use, efficiency and improved product performance across its entire product line.


– David Bush, senior marketing strategist, general purpose engines and industrial products, Honda Powersports and Products Group

The largest trend we’re seeing and hearing among our dealer partners and customers is an increased emphasis on asset utilization. Driven in part by the lack of carriers on the market, professionals are needing to make their equipment last longer and handle more jobs than usual. Versatility has become an increasing priority, and is something our engineering team is factoring into every new Diamond innovation.

– Matt Nelson, director of development, Diamond Mowers

Across the board we are seeing a trifecta of more power, more technology and higher prices. As we, as an industry, are adding more power into our units and introducing groundbreaking new technology every year, the result is increased productivity for commercial cutters, but that comes with bigger investments per machine.

Ferris Equipment Trends
Photo provided by Briggs & Stratton (Ferris)

For instance, technology like Electronic Fuel Injection and Electronic Throttle Control, which are available on our ISX 3300 and ISX 800 zero-turns, offer better performance, more productivity and an overall better operating experience across a wide variety of grasses and conditions. It’s a bigger investment but has a payoff in productivity.

Suspension is another example. Anecdotally, we’ve heard that contractors who use our equipment with full suspension typically retain their employees longer. They’re more comfortable on the mower, they aren’t in pain at the end of a long day, and they are generally happier with their jobs as a result. In this market, retaining staff is critical.

We’re also seeing more contractors diversifying their equipment portfolios to expand their offerings and extend their seasons. This could include stand-on blowers and debris loaders to branch into fall and spring clean-up jobs, as well as aerators and sprayer/spreaders to get into lawn restoration and reconditioning. Our Ferris and Billy Goat brands are both seeing increased demand for blowers and sprayer/spreaders.

– David Dwight, director, product management, Briggs & Stratton

The biggest industry trend is still the growing demand for battery-powered products among both the professional and consumer markets. Many municipalities and residential areas are starting to require low- to no-exhaust emissions and lower noise levels, so the market is adapting to meet those needs.

Stihl is already supporting landscapers with this transition with a wide range of powerful professional battery-powered equipment. In addition, a number of Stihl professional battery products are already California Zero Emissions Equipment (ZEE) certified, as well as the American Green Zone Alliance Field Test Certified (AFTC), allowing them to operate even under the most stringent emissions and durability guidelines.

As battery products grow in popularity, we continue to enhance our professional gas product range by improving power while lowering weight, reducing exhaust emissions and improving serviceability.

– Murray Bishop, director of sales, Stihl

Yanmar Equipment Trends
Photo provided by Yanmar Compact Equipment North America

Operator experience is a growing focus when it comes to outdoor power equipment for professional lawn and landscape applications. Especially when it comes to owner-operators, more people are prioritizing comfortable, easy-to-use equipment. Features such as premium 360-degree visibility available on the ASV MAX-Series line allow operators easy navigation in tight areas. Plus, the enhanced visibility allows them to see track edges, bucket edges and corners and more. Versatility is another priority. Attachment offerings are expanding so contractors can do more with their existing equipment.

Performance and functionality when it comes to equipment size has not been forgotten. Contractors are focusing more on finding equipment that can go where others can’t. From compact excavators with zero tail-swing or ultra-tight tail swing, like many Yanmar Compact Equipment models, to the smallest ASV Posi-Track loaders, manufacturers are answering this call. For example, zero tail-swing and ultra-tight tail swing allows operators to work closer to buildings with less risk of damaging the structure or the machine. Similarly, small compact track loaders can fit through areas like backyard fences that may otherwise have to be modified to allow equipment. These small loaders also often feature ground pressures as low as 3.1 psi and, as a result, minimize turf damage.

– Buck Storlie, product manager, Yanmar Compact Equipment North America

Progress in the commercial lawn mower space has typically been defined by incremental changes and improvements. However, lawn mower design and manufacturing are quickly being disrupted by two emerging trends — electric and autonomous technologies. While gas-powered mowers continue to dominate the commercial space, market and regulatory forces — notably California’s recent AB 1346 law regulating gas-powered tools — are driving manufacturers to concept and develop electric-powered machines to respond to growing landscaper demand. The requirements for commercial electric mowers are rigorous compared to consumer residential mowers, pushing the current electric technology to its limits. They must be designed to stand up to the rigors of commercial use and ultimately provide a net positive ROI to the landscaper’s business. Autonomous technologies are also shaping the future of mower design. With landscapers grappling with widespread labor shortages and increased overhead, the business case for autonomous mowers continues to look more and more appealing. And with the launch of the PRO Z SurePath mowers, the Cub Cadet PRO Series has taken its first step major step in the autonomous space. Using GPS-assisted driving to minimize overlap, SurePath technology delivers the efficiency and performance landscapers crave.

– Aaron Griffith, national sales manager of professional products at Cub Cadet

With the supply chain challenges we’ve had over the past three years, one of the coolest trends I’ve seen has been the diversity and flexibility our Exmark operations team has shown. To not give them credit for their amazing work getting products into customers’ hands would be a disservice. Their flexibility and willingness to adapt has definitely helped us turn the tide on the supply chain issues everyone’s been having.

While we know that we’re moving toward electric power for a lot of commercial landscape equipment, we’re hearing growing contractor feedback pondering what the infrastructure to support electric equipment will look like. What’s the investment going to be? For contractors who don’t own their buildings, it might be too much of an investment to have infrastructure installed, so we’ll need to come up with new solutions to meet their needs.

Within Exmark, just as within the industry, there is a huge push to drive sustainability, and we’re investing a huge amount of resources and capital into those projects. Our battery-powered Commercial 21 electric mower is just the start. By the end of 2023, we plan to have three more product categories in which Exmark will offer battery-powered options.

As labor continues to be such a struggle across the industry, productivity is paramount. A few years ago, we introduced our 96-inch Lazer Z models, and in 2022 it was the 144-inch Lazer Z Diesel. And while those mowers are raising the productivity bar at the top, we’re also focused on increasing productivity with the more ‘standard’ products for contractors. Our Commercial 30 walk-behind is a good example of this. And our effort to minimize or eliminate necessary in-season maintenance on our machines is another way we ensure our machines are ready to work when our customers need them.

– Lenny Mangnall, product manager, Exmark

Toro Equipment Trends
Photo provided by Toro

When it comes to trends in the professional space, it is all about looking for ways to increase efficiency and productivity, while navigating the ongoing labor challenges. To that end, battery-power continues to make waves in the industry as its applied in new and interesting ways, and software tools, such as Horizon360, are helping take the stress out of many elements of business operation for landscape contractors.

Of course, we’re continuing to notice an increase in adoption of battery-powered products, especially with emissions regulations getting stricter and gas prices just coming off a record high. To match the increase in demand, battery-powered professional lawn maintenance equipment options are increasing as infrastructure and equipment improves. In the past, electric equipment had challenges matching up to the performance and runtime of gas-powered machines. That’s no longer the case, and manufacturers, such as Toro, are applying battery power in exciting new ways.

Finally, we’ve seen a continued interest in stand-on mowers. Many contractors enjoy the increased visibility, ability to get on and off the machine easily, increased traction and improved stability on slopes that a stand-on mower can provide. Furthermore, contractors can potentially fit more equipment on their trailers by leveraging the smaller overall footprint of a stand-on machine.

– Jared Nuessen, marketing manager, Toro

As demand for lawn and landscape services remains high, we’re seeing professionals seek out mowers and other equipment that are reliable, serviceable and easy to use. Professionals want a mower that will withstand long days on the job, allowing them to work efficiently and effectively, while quickly moving from one lawncare job to the next. Serviceability is a key factor in the purchase decision. As professionals look to expand or replace their inventory, they’re going to prioritize mowers that maximize uptime and are highly serviceable. An easy-to-use mower helps professionals spend more time getting work done and having a mower that won’t slow them down on the jobsite will be crucial. In turn, manufacturers like Kioti are focused on developing products that are as reliable, intuitive and comfortable as possible.

– Steven Benedict, turf care product line manager, Kioti Tractor

We are seeing an increase in the number of landscape maintenance companies investing in battery-powered equipment. Not only does battery-powered equipment allow businesses to stay compliant with emerging emissions and noise regulations, but also offer benefits such as ease of use and no routine maintenance. By purchasing tools from a single brand with an interchangeable battery system, businesses can maximize their investment while driving long-term savings on gas and tool maintenance.

– Tony Buxton, group product manager, Milwaukee Tool

PLCs are always looking for quality equipment that can last all day long and continue to run for several years with very little downtime. They are also looking for higher-horsepower machines in order to get their jobs done quicker and more efficiently. Lastly, PLCs want a strong relationship with their dealer so they know whenever something does go wrong with a piece of equipment that they can count on the dealer to have their back. At John Deere, we count on the best dealer network in the business utilizing our Neverstop program that ensures the customers (through loaner equipment, next day parts guarantee, special financing) that we will always have their back.

– Chad Carney, go to market manager, B2B PLC segment, John Deere

LB: What advice do you have for landscape industry professionals regarding their equipment decisions during the next 12 to 18 months?

Steel Green Equipment Trends
Photo provided by Steel Green

Our advice is to order equipment now. With availability problems, you don’t want to wait to make a purchase decision only to find out that equipment is unavailable when you go to order. Increasing prices are another reason not to wait to make equipment decisions. Now’s the time to plan ahead for your equipment needs.

– Matt Smith, sales manager, Steel Green

Look for equipment that can give you an improved ROI for your business year. If you are not in the aeration business, this is a great area in turf renovation to begin, where you can turn a good profit and be efficient by using a stand-on aerator, such as the Ryan Lawnaire ZTS. Homeowners will be looking for your help in making their outdoor living space lush, including their lawns. Another great business investment is the Steiner 450 tractor with its quick-change attachments to keep you hustling all year long whether you are cutting grass, pushing snow, moving dirt or blowing leaves.

Landscapers should also review products personally to ensure that the equipment will be able to work as hard as they do. With labor shortages affecting business, saved minutes really add up to dollars in the pocket, and a mower that is quick to clean and maintain, as well as to be ready for the next working day is important. Bobcat’s AirFX deck helps landscaping businesses – not just with a great quality of cut, but also in having a cleaner deck at the end of the day, which means more time cutting and less time cleaning. Also, with limited work hours, landscapers can look at adding accessories like lights or other features to help them stretch the workday a bit more and be as efficient as possible.

– Ron Scheffler, senior product manager, Doosan Bobcat, Ryan and Steiner

Our advice to landscape industry professionals, when deciding on the right equipment, is to properly review and understand the battery product differences in units built for professionals versus residential units, which are geared toward homeowner use. While there may be a shift in price points, leaning toward the less expensive model does not guarantee proper performance as you would achieve with a professional-grade product with a premium price tag. These higher-end models are sturdier and built to last job after job. The same goes for understanding the difference between battery products versus gas. While they both serve a different function, investing in a less costly battery ecosystem versus a top-performing one will ultimately impact landscaping results when working from one job site to the next.

– Courtney Beall, senior brand manager for Husqvarna Professional

There are a number of factors surrounding equipment performance that landscape industry professionals should pay attention to — now and during the next year to year and a half. As in past years, reliability, efficiency of use, and being easy and inexpensive to maintain continue to be extremely important issues surrounding outdoor power equipment for landscape professionals. The commercial landscape market also benefits from increased innovation and development of equipment and tools. It therefore comes as no surprise that outdoor power product owners, especially those who operate commercial mower models, should remain focused both on how to get the most value from their equipment and how to most effectively complete outdoor landscaping maintenance and projects. For example, knowing that these factors drive buying habits, Honda produces the HRC Series lineup of commercial lawn mowers, durable models offering a superior cut and engineered for heavy use.

In addition, customers remain on the lookout for ways to make their businesses and operations more environmentally friendly. This means that fuel-efficient and lower-emissions products are proving to be attractive, along with battery-powered products. For example, all of Honda’s gasoline-powered mowers incorporate Honda four-stroke general purpose engines that feature high performance, easy starting and low fuel consumption.

Noise abatement, both for operators and consumers, is an increasingly important aspect of environmental sustainability. Quieter operation of power equipment, like commercial lawn mowers, helps reduce operator fatigue and increase productivity of crews. And as people in the community are asking for less noise from landscaping activities, quiet operation reduces sound pollution. Quiet operation is a standard for all Honda outdoor power equipment models.

– David Bush, senior marketing strategist, general purpose engines and industrial products, Honda Powersports and Products Group

Diamond Mowers Equipment Trends
Photo provided by Diamond Mowers

Diversify and give yourself the ability to do more with less. For example, someone who has strictly worked in the hardscape business may now be looking to add an Excavator Drum Mulcher to their fleet in order to “have another tool in the toolbox” that would allow them to expand their offerings, work with new customers and grow their business.

Maintain your fleet. New equipment will continue to be in short supply this year. Do everything you can to keep your current equipment in top form, and be sure your service professional knows and follows the recommended maintenance routine.

– Matt Nelson, director of development, Diamond Mowers

The majority of our customers are small-business owners, and they feel a lot of pressure from the economy, gas prices and inflation in general. We want to help make them successful in this environment, and the best way we can do that is to keep them productive.

That means working with our dealer partners to help educate contractors on how to view equipment as an investment, not an expense. And yes, that applies when purchasing new equipment. A contractor should look at the ROI: Can I cut faster and longer? Am I buying from a reputable dealer and brand?

But beyond the purchase of new equipment, keeping up with maintenance and repairs has never been more critical. There is still uncertainty in the supply chain, so contractors need to make sure they’re doing all they can to keep their existing units operating and producing revenue.

I tell people that maintenance and repairs of existing machines is a great insurance policy. It enables you to buy a piece of equipment when you want to or plan to, not when you have to.

– David Dwight, director, product management, Briggs & Stratton

Stihl prides itself on the quality, durability, serviceability and performance of all our tools. And with over 10,000 local authorized Stihl dealers nationwide, landscapers can find someone with the knowledge and experience to provide them the right tool for the job and support them when they need their equipment serviced or repaired. The importance of having a good relationship with a local Stihl dealer cannot be overstated.

For those who are actively making the transition to battery, it’s important to find a modular battery platform that drives several professional tools. Look for a broad assortment that extends from trimmers and blowers to multi-attachment tools, and ensure you’re getting a professional-grade tool.

– Murray Bishop, director of sales, Stihl

Versatility remains a key benefit when it comes to investing in landscape equipment, especially with companies facing workforce shortages. Machines with strong speed and the ability to work in all seasons allow contractors to maximize performance for more of the year.

Operator experience should also be top of mind for industry professionals, meaning they should pay attention to comfort and ease-of-use features. These can include fully adjustable seats, Bluetooth speakers, or near-360-degree visibility. Industry professionals should also look at indicators of reliability, such as leading warranties, anti-derailment guarantees and cooling capacity.

It’s important to look toward the future as well. For example, if your expansion plans mostly involve a 5.5-ton machine, don’t invest in a 3.5-ton compact excavator.

– Buck Storlie, product manager, Yanmar Compact Equipment North America

Partner with your local dealer that you have built a relationship with. Discuss with them your issues, concerns and pain points of your business. There are always new products coming out that could and should make your job easier. If you are considering switching brands or dealer partners, visit all the dealers in your area within reasonable driving distances for your operation and see which dealership fits you best. Talk about the support after the sale for parts and repairs. Any time you can save on your downtime you will be ahead.

– Aaron Griffith, national sales manager of professional products at Cub Cadet

I think one of the most important things contractors can do is to plan their purchases. We’re not in an environment where you can run your mower until it dies on Wednesday and expect to have a new replacement mower from their dealer on Thursday. That’s why using the right tools for the job, and planning to purchase the right equipment for your needs, is important.

Look for equipment that meets your needs for productivity, but is also reliable, durable, and is backed by a quality dealer that you have a good relationship with. And, finally, make sure you’re doing the preventative maintenance –– the oil and filter changes, blade sharpening, etc. –– that will help you get the most from your machines. If you neglect service and maintenance, you greatly increase the odds of a failure occurring in the field.

– Lenny Mangnall, product manager, Exmark

When it comes to purchasing equipment, look for products that check all the boxes: it handles the job quickly, stands up to challenging conditions, keeps your crew comfortable and therefore productive, and is easy and safe to operate. Shop for the long term, not the short term. That means investing in products that will stand up to the test of time, and deliver quality performance again and again. That also means investing in equipment that has a lower total cost of ownership in the long run but may have a higher investment cost upfront. For example, battery-powered machines will have significantly reduced maintenance costs over the life of the equipment — and 100-percent fuel savings. Over time, that represents a huge return on your investment.

Another aspect of the efficiency play is investing in more versatile, all-season equipment like the Toro GrandStand Multi Force. Using this platform, business owners can simply purchase new attachments rather than entirely new machines – up-front costs are lower, storage space required is smaller, and overall maintenance is easier because you have fewer machines.

– Jared Nuessen, marketing manager, Toro

Kioti Equipment Trends
Photo provided by Kioti Tractor

Landscaping professionals should look for mowers that allow them to be efficient and effective on the jobsite. To ensure quality results, they should consider a variety of factors in their mowers, including user comfort, ease of use and high machine uptime. With a comfortable mower that won’t require frequent repairs, and one that seasoned professionals as well as first-time users can operate with ease, landscaping professionals can focus on completing the task at hand.

– Steven Benedict, turf care product line manager, Kioti Tractor

Major advancements in battery, motor and electronics technology will allow battery-powered equipment to outperform gas while over-delivering on the needs of the professional. In the U.S., we are seeing a large focus on reducing noise and emissions. By investing in battery-powered equipment now, landscape maintenance companies are able to stay ahead of these trends. As businesses look to make equipment purchasing decisions, they should consider adopting battery-powered equipment in order to be prepared for the potential of further regulations.

– Tony Buxton, group product manager, Milwaukee Tool

Each customer needs to make the decision that is best for their fleet, employees, and upcoming jobs. With the supply chain having several constraints over the last couple of years, it’s not been an easy decision for PLCs on when to trade in equipment and when they can get new machines. It’s important to work with their local dealer to understand those supply concerns and create a plan together on when/how to make those equipment decisions.

– Chad Carney, go to market manager, B2B PLC segment, John Deere

LB: What is your outlook for the commercial outdoor power equipment market for the remainder of 2022 and beyond?

As always, we’re excited for the future. The outdoor power equipment industry has demonstrated resilience through turmoil over the past 20-plus years, and we are confident it will continue to stand strong regardless of economic uncertainty.

– Matt Smith, sales manager, Steel Green

Ryan Equipment Trends
Photo provided by Ryan

Our outlook for the remainder of this year and into the near future remains strong, as we continue to monitor the flexible and ever-changing workforce. We will continue to help our customers navigate these challenging years ahead by providing products our customers have expected from us.

Some of the biggest challenges professional landscapers may face this year will be the continuing labor shortage and lingering supply chain issues. To help combat the labor shortage, landscapers should understand what products will best support their needs. One way to evaluate your needs is to consider: which commercial mower will allow me to clean my equipment quickly, make standard maintenance updates as fast as I can, and overall, be the most efficient product for my business?

– Ron Scheffler, senior product manager, Ryan and Steiner

As regulations continue to shift toward reducing noise pollution and emissions, we’ll see growing interest in eco-friendly solutions such as battery-powered products (depending on the region or customer’s requirement).

– Courtney Beall, senior brand manager for Husqvarna Professional

Between softening consumer demand and a continued lack of new equipment due to supply chain issues, we predict that the remainder of 2022 will bring some challenges to the industry. However, we are confident in our ability to work together with our dealer partners and their customers to effectively navigate those challenges with game-changing products – made here in the U.S. – that promise to optimize productivity, diversify work opportunities and create new revenue streams.

– Matt Nelson, director of development, Diamond Mowers

Even though inflation and the threat of a potential recession hover out there, demand remains high for contractors. Throughout the pandemic, homeowners have realized the value of investing in their homes – both from a property value standpoint and from an enjoyment standpoint. So, I am positive about the outlook for landscape company owners and operators.

From a manufacturer’s perspective, we’re going to sell everything we can make in the near-term. Showrooms will remain sparse as we continue to navigate supply chain fluctuations.

– David Dwight, director, product management, Briggs & Stratton

As evidenced again this year, I think we can all agree the landscaping industry is resilient and will continue to flourish as an essential business despite challenges caused by inflation and higher gas prices, unpredictable weather and the lingering COVID pandemic.

Due to supply chain constraints and rising costs across the board, we encourage landscapers to remain innovative in their service offerings, stay connected with their network of suppliers, and continue to manage their business in a way that allows them to ride out any storm.

While the application of robotic and connected products is still developing in the industry, and the adoption of battery-powered tools in the professional arena gradually picks up, it’s important to recognize these innovations will be significant to landscapers over the next five years.

– Murray Bishop, director of sales, Stihl

Interest in small compact track loaders and mini excavators will continue to rise as operators look for ways to maximize efficiency and performance on the jobsite. With their ability to work in tighter areas and boost productivity in what otherwise might require more manpower, the smaller class of equipment is perfect for small contractors, rental centers, weekend warriors and more.

Forestry applications are also quickly expanding, with a lot of landscape contractors veering into the growing mulching segment, driven by factors like housing growth, fire prevention and right-of-way clearing.

– Buck Storlie, product manager, Yanmar Compact Equipment North America

Labor, as well as availability, will continue to be a concern. It is as important as ever to build that relationship with the dealer to understand what new products are coming out that could improve labor issues and to understand what products are going to be available and when. I do expect availability to start to improve, but it’s always a good idea to plan in the offseason, discuss that strategy with your dealer, and make sure everyone can follow through on the plan for success.

– Aaron Griffith, national sales manager of professional products at Cub Cadet

Exmark Equipment Trends
Photo provided by Exmark

At Exmark, our outlook is extremely positive looking forward, and we expect sales to continue to be robust, especially when you consider the shortages we’ve experienced over the past couple years. Plus, all the updates people did to their yards and outdoor living spaces during COVID will need to be maintained and kept up, so we know the demand for landscape maintenance services will remain high as well. So, we’re very excited, not just for the rest of 2022, but for 2023 and beyond.

– Lenny Mangnall, product manager, Exmark

Our overall outlook for the industry continues to be positive, and, frankly, we’re excited about what’s to come. As equipment continues to evolve, landscape contractors are open to new possibilities and ways of doing things. Autonomous technology, such as Toro’s new robotic mower, will help alleviate the challenges associated with labor shortages by complementing the productivity of landscape crews. Battery power is being applied in new ways, mitigating gas costs and reducing maintenance needs. This is a very exciting time to be in the landscape industry, and we’re looking forward to leading the way with the next evolution of landscape equipment.

– Jared Nuessen, marketing manager, Toro

With many homeowners and businesses across the country fully returned to their pre-pandemic lifestyles, the demand for professional landscaping and lawn care services is high. At the same time, labor shortages are also persisting. As a result, demand for high-efficiency mowers and other pieces of outdoor power equipment is likely to continue growing throughout the remainder of this year and into 2023, with landscaping professionals continuing to seek out high-quality and versatile equipment for their fleet.

– Steven Benedict, turf care product line manager, Kioti Tractor

There are many advantages for landscape maintenance companies that start investing in battery-powered equipment, but not all manufacturers can give professionals the performance and capability they need. As a world leader in battery-powered solutions, Milwaukee is committed to developing high-performance, sustainable solutions for landscape maintenance and forestry professionals. We will continue to leverage our extensive background in battery-powered technology to provide game-changing solutions that increase safety and productivity.

– Tony Buxton, group product manager, Milwaukee Tool

Even with some supply chain struggles in 2022, the commercial mowing equipment demand remains fairly strong through this year. Certainly, just like everyone, we are watching the economy closely over the next six to 12 months, but no matter what happens, there will always be a need to cut grass. We are very hopeful our PLC customers’ businesses will remain strong, and through our dealer network John Deere will be there for all our PLC customer needs for 2022 and beyond.

– Chad Carney, go to market manager, B2B PLC segment, John Deere

LB: What new or different commercial outdoor power equipment offerings do you have for 2022, or what new products and/or upgrades do you have coming soon that you can discuss?

We recently released our largest machine yet, the SGXL. The SGXL is a multifunction applicator with industry-leading capacity and versatility, and it has already received a fantastic response from customers. We’re also excited about our new Hillside Stability System, which allows operators to lock and unlock the front caster wheels on the machine for increased stability on uneven terrain. To keep up with growth, we recently broke ground on a new facility and plan to grow our team over the next year.

– Matt Smith, sales manager, Steel Green

Steiner has a few new attachments launching soon with one being a flail mower with a 72-inch cutting width that offers two different kinds of cutting knives and a rear roller for striping and stability. The other attachments are new finish mower decks that were designed from the Bobcat mower AirFX cutting system and will be available in either a 61-inch or 72-inch cutting width. All of these new attachments will fit appropriately with the Steiner QuickHitch attachment system. Ryan Turf has a new sod cutter with a hydraulic transmission. The new Jr. Sod Cutter – Hydro comes in either an 18- or 24-inch cutting width, and has intuitive controls for easy operation and can travel up to 4 mph for efficiency.

– Ron Scheffler, senior product manager, Ryan and Steiner

Recently, we launched an upgrade to our ZT7000 commercial mower, which now offers a Kawasaki FX1000 EFI engine option that highlights a 25% fuel savings over its standard engine, and has 38.5 horsepower. The ZT7000 also has a 15-gallon fuel capacity, hitch receiver, rotating bumper for quick cleaning and service, and boasts a 19-mph transport speed.

In April of this year, we also launched our first commercial walk-behind mowers, expanding our grounds maintenance lineup. The WB700 is available with a 36-inch, 48-inch or 52-inch floating deck to give contractors the versatility they need to match the mower to the job. The WB700 comes equipped with Hydro-Gear ZT-2800 hydrostatic transaxles, which deliver smoother, simpler operation with heavy-duty torque output and comfortable ground speeds up to 6.5 mph. The large drive wheels aid with curb clearance, and the front casters are standard semi-pneumatic for your commercial applications. All of our new commercial mowers come with a 3-year or 2,000-hour limited commercial warranty.

– Dan Riddle, marketing manager, Doosan Bobcat

New for 2022, Husqvarna will debut a rail charger this fall season to streamline the process of charging multiple batteries at a given time, and allow landscapers to have continuous workflow without interruption.

– Courtney Beall, senior brand manager for Husqvarna Professional

Honda Equipment Trends
Photo provided by Honda

Honda Power Sports and Products launched the all-new Honda EU3200i, the newest generator in the Honda Super Quiet EU Series lineup. The Honda EU3200i delivers more power and more convenience than the Honda EU3000i Handi generator and in a compact, portable package. High power and convenience are the two key factors that set the Honda EU3200i apart. Honda has packed 3,200 watts of power into the all-new generator. In addition, the EU3200i offers a range of conveniences such as quick and easy two-step starting, remote smartphone control, exceptional fuel efficiency, long runtimes and a compact portable design.

– Honda Power Sports and Products

We have launched four new products thus far in 2022 – the Brush Cutter Pro, SK Drum Mulcher OD Pro X, Excavator Drum Mulcher DC Pro X and Boom Drum Mulcher.

Inspired by and modeled after Diamond Mowers’ industry-leading Brush Cutter Pro X, the new Pro model delivers versatility and durability with specific tailoring for a broader range of skid-steers and less rigorous applications. It features four hydraulic motor options along with an exclusive oval blade carrier boasting two hardened steel blades that maintain a 72-inch cutting width and effectively slice through grass, brush, branches and small trees up to 5 inches in diameter.

Combining the best performance features of depth control and open drum designs into one powerful and versatile attachment, Diamond Mowers’ SK Drum Mulcher OD Pro X is engineered for users requiring optimal power and flexibility for harsh mulching needs. Designed to process material up to 9 inches in diameter, this drum is differentiated by its optimized infeed system. Maximum shredding performed in the drum chamber reduces the need for back-dragging and produces a uniform mulch with a smaller particle size than typical open drum options. Available in 60- and 72-inch cutting widths, the OD Pro X accommodates three tooth options and is equipped with a variable displacement piston motor; severe-duty bearings rated to 77,000+ lbs.

The Excavator Drum Mulcher DC Pro X increases the versatility of any midi-excavator while delivering more productivity per pass than competitive attachments. Ideal for mulching and brush clearing with power and precision, this efficient solution effectively cuts back and processes unwanted vegetation. Offered in two widths (30” and 50”) to accommodate excavator carriers from 4.5 to 10 metric tons, the attachment features a Rexroth 63cc variable displacement hydraulic motor that is larger than the industry standard and provides impressive torque to power through material up to 8 inches in diameter.

The Boom Drum Mulcher is a must-have addition for any municipal fleet faced with cutting, processing, and eliminating woody materials. This boom head offers the same industry-leading performance and benefits as the Excavator Drum Mulcher, including a larger-than-industry-standard hydraulic motor, optimized infeed system, and removeable bolt-on door for controlling and containing debris.

– Matt Nelson, director of development, Diamond Mowers

Ferris is currently focused on upgrades to our cutting deck. The new 60-inch deck we will be introducing is more premium and durable, and offers a better quality of cut. We’ll be upgrading to a 7-gauge steel on the key components that tend to get the most wear and tear to ensure durability.

Our cutting deck enhancements are part of Ferris’ ongoing efforts of continuously improving the quality of cut and the user experience. Our commercial customers spend a lot of time and resources on their equipment, and we want to do all we can to make sure that they are productive and comfortable and that we’re exceeding their performance expectations.

– David Dwight, director, product management, Briggs & Stratton

Stihl is releasing multiple professional tools that will provide landscapers the power they need to get the job done, e.g., the MSA 300, the most powerful chain saw in the Stihl lineup. In addition, Stihl has released a mobile charger, the AL 301-4, that supports professionals in charging multiple batteries while on the go.

Stihl also introduced the AP 500 S, the first ever Stihl battery with power-laminate cell technology. This battery offers maximum durability, 40% more power than the AP 300 S, the best power-to-weight ratio in the AP System and integration with the Stihl Cloud. When properly cared for, the AP 500 S can accept up to twice as many charging cycles as compared to conventional Lithium-ion batteries, providing a significant increase in service life. And with the Stihl Battery Management System (BMS), landscapers get maximum tool performance through optimized battery power management.

For context, the BMS monitors individual battery cells to ensure consistent power (wattage) and communicates with electronic modules in the tool and charger that are designed to protect against system overload, tool overheating and deep battery discharge.

Stihl also has a whole new line of products coming later this year. This fall, Stihl will introduce professional and homeowner lines of zero-turn mowers.

– Murray Bishop, director of sales, Stihl

We recently introduced the new Yanmar-powered ASV RT-50 compact track loader. The new machine boasts 53.8 horsepower, up a full 8 percent from the previous model. The repowered RT-50 also offers improved serviceability, allowing owners to have the Yanmar engine serviced at ASV dealers. In addition to these benefits, the new RT-50 features new comfort, visibility and performance features, elevating the RT-50 as one of the top compact track loaders in both performance and comfort in its class. The Yanmar-powered RT-50 provides construction-grade performance in a small package and is ideally suited for work in tight spaces.

– Buck Storlie, product manager, Yanmar Compact Equipment North America

Cub Cadet introduced a new chapter in true landscaping innovation with its first GPS-operated semi-autonomous commercial mowers. Our Cub Cadet PRO Z 960 S and 972 S SurePath units are outfitted with GPS technology and an exclusive four-wheel steering system that provide a semi-autonomous experience designed to maximize efficiency and productivity while minimizing effort and training. The operator simply needs to set the preliminary cut line and the SurePath.

Beyond efficiency, cut quality and an intuitive user experience, SurePath represents a new era in ride comfort for operators. By automating the turning and steering, the GPS technology helps reduce hand-arm vibrations, manual inputs and the need for sustained concentration. As a result, landscapers should have more time and energy to devote to other high-priority tasks and projects. Built on the trusted PRO Z 960 S and 972 S platforms, the SurePath units are outfitted with a 16cc transmission, 26-inch rear tires and a high-performance FX1000v Kawasaki engine, and are backed by a 3-year/no-hour-limit warranty or a 5-year/1,750-hour limited deck warranty.

– Aaron Griffith, national sales manager of professional products at Cub Cadet

In 2022 we launched our 144-inch Lazer Z Diesel zero-turn –– our largest mower yet –– and the excitement around it has been outstanding. To date, it’s outpaced our original projections. We’re still working to figure out how to meet the demand, in fact, but it’s been incredible to see how customers are adapting to the productivity potential of that machine.

We also launched our all-new stand-on Vertex S-Series machine in 48-, 52- and 60-inch deck widths. To say it’s been met with open arms by our customers is an understatement. The Vertex S-Series is giving them the reliability, durability, low maintenance, and the cut quality they want and need.

Very soon, Exmark will launch its first battery-powered machine – a Commercial 21-inch walk-behind. As you’d expect from Exmark, it’s designed from the ground up as a commercial mower. We’ve taken the ¼-inch thick, cast alloy deck design from our Commercial 21 gas mower and revamped it to work with the new electric power head. The machine uses high-capacity 60-volt batteries, and each mower will ship with two batteries and a charger.

We’ve been testing this mower across the country for quite some time now, and it’s been very well accepted by our commercial customers. That’s because we did exactly what they asked us to do: give them an electric equivalent to our time-tested Commercial 21.

At Equip Exposition, Exmark will unveil additional new or redesigned products for 2023.

– Lenny Mangnall, product manager, Exmark

This past year we introduced the Toro Z Master Revolution, GrandStand Revolution, enhanced our Horizon 360 business software, and introduced Toro’s new robotic mower.

The Revolution and GrandStand Revolution series takes two of Toro’s most beloved mower platforms and revolutionizes them with lithium-ion battery technology that will keep contractors running all day long, from start to finish. We’re excited to start shipping the Revolution units this fall.

We recently enhanced Horizon360, our business software for landscape contractors that drives more profits and increases business efficiency and effectiveness. This powerful, all-in-one software suite allows landscape contractors to track the productivity of their crews and equipment more effectively, automate their billing process, and enhance the time management of their business. With the addition of a customer relationship management (CRM) tool, Horizon360 also now allows contractors to automate client communication, while a new online payment feature makes invoicing a breeze. Plus, Horizon 360 offers proof of service, job notes and office notes, real-time equipment tracking and bi-lingual phone app for managing scheduling, weather events and multiple crews.

Finally, we announced Toro’s new robotic mower, which will complement the efforts of landscape contractors. We see this new mower becoming a labor extender for landscape contractors. With autonomous technology that requires no boundary wires, landscapers can program this autonomous mower for each lawn they service, and also focus their time on more labor-intensive landscaping tasks. The new robotic mowers will be available in 2023.

As far as what’s next for 2022, we’re looking forward to introducing several exciting new products for contractors at Equip Expo. You’ll see us applying battery power in new and exciting ways that will really empower contractors to take advantage of alternative power across their operations.

– Jared Nuessen, marketing manager, Toro

Kioti entered the turf care market two and a half years ago with our first-ever zero-turn-radius mower models, and we’re excited to be greatly expanding our turf care offerings this year. In response to customer demand, we’re launching our first-ever line of stand-on zero-turn-radius mowers. The ZXS Series is debuting with two models, allowing customers to choose from 48- or 54-inch fabricated, reinforced steel decks. Both models also feature easy access to all serviceable components through a simple tool-free removal of the operator pad. Kioti is also expanding our popular ZXC Series of zero-turn-radius mowers, with three new premium seated commercial-grade models featuring a large 12.5-gallon fuel capacity. All five of the new models include 24-hp Kawasaki FT engines combined with Hydro-Gear ZT-3400 transmissions for reliable, hardworking performance.

– Steven Benedict, turf care product line manager, Kioti Tractor

Milwaukee Tool Equipment Trends
Photo provided by Milwaukee Tool

In 2022, we have been excited to introduce 10 new solutions to our outdoor power equipment lineup. This includes our M18 Fuel 14-inch top handle chainsaw, designed to meet the performance, durability, and ergonomic needs of the arborist and landscape maintenance professionals. With faster cutting than 35cc gas, the saw delivers the power to cut hardwoods, and eliminates the headaches associated with gas engines. The advanced electronics package allows the saw to reach full throttle in less than one second and maintain speed under heavy load without bogging down to provide ultimate control and increased productivity. The M18 Fuel 14-inch top handle Chainsaw brings innovation and industry-leading performance to battery-powered chainsaws, and is a true testament to our focus on investing in game-changing technology that truly delivers breakthrough solutions for landscape and forestry professionals.

– Tony Buxton, group product manager, Milwaukee Tool

Our diesel Z994R ZTrak zero-turn mower is now equipped with a 72-inch deck option, increasing operator productivity. The new deck size is ideal for managing larger terrains, while still offering premium quality, enhanced comfort, lower operating costs, and longer engine life. The Z994R features two ComfortGlide suspension seat options, the standard Comfort & Convenience package, and the Brake-N-Go machine starting system. Additionally, a large, open operator station and foot platform provide plenty of legroom, allowing for multiple foot positions for increased operator comfort.

Our commercial lawn mower attachments and accessories have also seen a boost in popularity in 2022. Our three-bag Material Collection System features an improved design for more efficient material collection and superior performance. Compatible with all gas-powered Z900 models, the redesigned system includes a smaller size and shortened travel path for clippings, and stronger suction on the blower. The heavy-duty impeller chops up materials into small pieces, creating a more efficient fill from left to right. The lighter bags on the new Material Collection System are easier to unload and empty, and tool-free clips simplify in-field removal. With many similar features such as heavy-duty blowers and strong suction to prevent plugging, we also offer our customers a dump-from-seat Material Collection System.

In addition, with our Fastback PRO rear-discharge mower deck, you can keep grass clippings behind you, not on you. That’s why we gave the Fastback PRO a unique, baffled design that allows clippings to freely exit the back of the deck. For gas models, we offer it in 60 inches for the Z930M and the Z950R, 72 inches in Z950M and Z970R, and then it’s available in both 60 inches and 72 inches in the diesel Z994R and Z997R models.

– Chad Carney, go to market manager, B2B PLC segment, John Deere

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