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Hustler vs. Exmark

Discussion in 'Homeowner Assistance Forum' started by bderks, Oct 28, 2004.

  1. bderks

    bderks LawnSite Member
    Posts: 48

    Well, I was pretty much all set on purchasing an Exmark CT with a 52" deck and 19hp Kawasaki for $5600.

    But today I stopped in at a Hustler dealership just for the heck of it, and the salesman offered me a great deal on a FastTrak 52" deck and 20hp Honda, for $4800. Now I have a tough choice on my hands.

    The differences I have noted is the Hustler comes with a 12 gallon fuel tank (vs. 6 gallon on the Exmark), a foot lever to raise the deck, arm rests, and a mulching kit thrown in. But from what I've read on this forum, the Kawasaki engine seems to get better reviews than the Honda.

    How would you guys compare the FastTrak against the CT? What does everyone think about the Honda engines? I know, the $800 difference in price is a lot, but I want to make sure I'm getting a machine that will give me years of trouble-free use.

    For the record, this will be used on a 1.2 acre residential property, very little slope. Any opinions you guys have would be very helpful. Thanks!

  2. Travis Followell

    Travis Followell LawnSite Silver Member
    from KY
    Posts: 2,207

    The reason the Hustler is $800 cheaper and is bigger than the exmark is because the Fastrac is not a commercial machine like the exmark. The Hustler fastrac is designed to do just what you want to do without costing you more. It will work for you just fine as will the exmark will also. You may also want to check out the Hustler mini z also. It is a commercial mower like the Exmark and the price will probibly be pretty close. Like i said earlier the fastrac is designed to do just what you are planning on mowing and it will work just fine for you.
  3. davislawncare

    davislawncare LawnSite Member
    Posts: 11

    Exmark, Exmark, Exmark. I came upon the same situation when purchasing my equipment, granted mine was for commercial, but I looked at all the other brands(toro, scag, gravely)and I was offered a better price. Although, you will NEVER go wrong in buying an Exmark. The quality of these machines is unbelievable. Trust me, I have 2.
  4. dvmcmrhp52

    dvmcmrhp52 LawnSite Platinum Member
    from Pa.
    Posts: 4,205

    The Exmark CT is not really a commercial mower either..........
    The wheel motors and pumps are smaller than a lazer hp or full size lazer, smaller tires etc.
    The CT is sold as a top of the line homeowner mower.

    I would not buy a fastrac but that's just me.................

    My honest recomendation would be for you to save a few more pennies and buy a lazer Z HP..........More horsepower, better Hydraulics, more comforts, larger tires,foot lift assist for deck, etc.

    Fastrac versus Lazer CT?
    Lazer CT.

    I'm an exmark guy................. :)
  5. rewill

    rewill LawnSite Member
    from SE PA
    Posts: 6

    I'm a new member here and have found the information invaluable. I was leaning towards an Exmark CT, as my next door neighbor has a Lazer HP and has cut his cutting time in half, but was steered towards the Toro Z400 Estate by a friend who owns a lawn supply store. Essentially, these machines are fairly identical, since Toro owns Exmark, and can be had for about $500 cheaper.

    Does anyone have any experience with the Toro, and is there something I am overlooking for someone with 2 acres to mow. I realize the difference in the decks, but as a homeowner and not a commercial user, I don't feel this is a huge drawback.

    Any input would be appreciated.


  6. mowhigh

    mowhigh LawnSite Member
    from Dallas
    Posts: 198

    The 3 models that you and bderks are considering would properly fall in the 'estate' category and all would easily meet your needs. Your best bet is to demo on your own property. As long as you don't need a true commercial mower, you might also check www.countryclipper.com to see if there's a nearby dealer. Their JAZee series is as rugged as the Exmark CT (the most durable of the 3 mentioned) and the flip-up deck (easy clean-up), choice of Kohler or Kawasaki engine and single joystick control are great. But don't buy anything without trying it first! Good luck...
  7. PaulJ

    PaulJ LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,776

    Iv'e ben running a 52" 20hp fasttrak "Loaner" for about a week as my 48"swb is at the dealer with a running problem (kaw engin)

    The fasttrak is a nice little machine. I have been able to use it in most of the plaes i took the walkbehind. other that deck width the walkbehind is actually a bigger machine. I ran a friends exmark lazerhp the other day and I felt like I was sitting way up in the air compared to the fasttrak. you sit low on the hustler. the honda engine seems to do fine. the controls are smooth and responsive. the foot lever deck lift is very easy to use.

    the best way for you to decide is to demo each machine and see which one feels right for you.
  8. dvmcmrhp52

    dvmcmrhp52 LawnSite Platinum Member
    from Pa.
    Posts: 4,205

    One question.........
    Is the $500 going to make a difference in the long run?
    For $500's difference I would buy the Exmark.
    Exmark may be owned by Toro but they are totally different machines.

  9. RichmondR

    RichmondR LawnSite Member
    Posts: 106

    I agree there are substantial differences between the Fastrack and the Exmark, but there are a lot of similarities between the CT and the Toro Z-400 Estate. I own a Toro Z-453 (23hp Kaw, 52" turboforce deck), and I looked at models from both Exmark, Toro and Hustler. Portions of the frame are, I believe, identical (per a posting on the Exmark message board), and the specs are very similar between the Toro Z-400 series and the Exmark HP series (including CT). One significant difference is obviously the decks, and both models have their supporters. The deck on the Toro CT is apparently a Turboforce deck without the adjustable baffle or bull-nose bumper. The deck on the Fastrack isn't quite as deep nor do I think the blades spin quite as fast. One reason I went with the Z-453 is the larger tire size and HP, on the theory that I am already spending a lot of money, and the mosve up wasn't that much more.
  10. dvmcmrhp52

    dvmcmrhp52 LawnSite Platinum Member
    from Pa.
    Posts: 4,205


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