my gravely, for example, cost me $5k in 2011. gravely zt hd 52". Its a commercial machine, at a homeowner unit price.
Ive put around 500 hrs on it so far, havent even had to use the choke yet, not once. NO JOKE. Doesnt even smoke when you start it up. Not even in 20 degree weather, which is the coldest its gotten here.
My set up:
-2007 Chevy 2500hd 8.1l 4x4
-7x18 enclosed trailer
-Grasshopper front mount 61", gravely 52"
-36" Gravely Walkbehind, 21" exmark push mower