Kawi FT 730 EFI vs Vanguard 810 carb

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing Equipment' started by FLStateOX, Aug 10, 2019.

  1. FLStateOX

    FLStateOX LawnSite Member
    Messages: 5

    I've done a billion searches, and I haven't found anything that pits these two head to head. There's a ton of information regarding the FX730 vs the Vanguard 810, but this is specifically regarding the EFI 730 and the carbed 810. Application is a 60" deck, if that affects anyone's opinion of which would be preferred.

    Most of what I'm reading seems to indicate a strong preference for EFI these days, but I'm curious if that holds true despite an 84cc displacement difference. Fuel economy is obviously a no brainer win for the Kawi, but can the 730 EFI perform as well as an 810? Is it susceptible to the same failures many complain about in the rest of the 730 series? Which of the two is likely to be cheaper and easier to maintain over time?

    This is primarily a head to head engine question, so hopefully it's appropriate here even though I'm not a pro.
     
  2. BiggenF15

    BiggenF15 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 3

    I had this exact discussion with my local Ferris dealer when I was looking at an ISX-800. The dealership sells Ferris, Snapper Pro, and Bobcat. He's an older guy who has been in the business quite a while so I have some faith in what he says.

    I have no experience with either engine but he told me he would buy the carb engine. He didn't feel there would be a noticeable power difference one way or the other but the EFI engine may be a bit more efficient. The reason he said to go with the carb is reliability. Although the Kawasaki is very reliable, they do occasionally have them come in for work on the EFI, which is expensive. While the carb engine may require some work it is typically simpler (often can be done by the owner) and cheaper. Also, oftentimes if there's trouble brewing in the fuel system, the carb engine will give you some warning (rough running) while the EFI usually just dies or won't start to begin with.

    On a related note, I've had three different dealers tell me the Kawasaki engines are more reliable than Kohler or B&S. However, Kawasaki is very reluctant to cover anything under warranty whereas the other two will.
     
  3. OP
    OP
    FLStateOX

    FLStateOX LawnSite Member
    Messages: 5

    Thanks for the info. I went to a couple of dealers. One of them quoted the Kawi EFI without mentioning any other options until I called back. The other, who was very transparent about brands he sold as well as others, agreed that the Vanguard was the better option. He knew I was looking at it from a long term homeowner perspective, though, which may have influenced his recommendation.

    Horsepower rating is identical, but from what I've found the Kawi EFI has 40 lb ft of torque, while the Vanguard has 44.
     
  4. ed2hess

    ed2hess LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 15,918

    I would not get the efi engine......definitely going to be harder to figure out problems. I read about a lot of intermittent problem on lawnsite....and ask yourself "is dealer repair guy capable of repairing". Some of the parts will be costly to shotgun. I may be wrong but nobody talks about any advantage except gas reduction.
     
    K c m likes this.
  5. Hawkshot99

    Hawkshot99 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,006

    Would you buy a carborated car or truck?
    A EFI engine is going to run smoother, start faster, get better fuel mileage, and respond to conditions quicker than a carb will.
     
  6. ed2hess

    ed2hess LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 15,918

    Just my opinion ....we got our first Kohler efi so we will see. We had a failure on new machine...blown fuse. Discovered that it has a lot of fuses. When I looked at reason for starting failure the list of causes is long.
     
  7. Hawkshot99

    Hawkshot99 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,006

    I agree, it's different. But in not to much time you will be very happy, just like you are that cars are all efi.
     
    ed2hess likes this.
  8. Hawkshot99

    Hawkshot99 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,006

    *I will admit I have never owned or operated a efi mower. I'm not aware of anybody making a 48" wb with efi. But when I bought my most recent motorcycle it was efi and I could not believe how much better it was then the old carbed bikes, or my dad's bike I ride every once in a while. I've never driven a carb car as even the p.o.s. clunkers I got in high school(a 95 car) was efi and they have all worked great.
     
  9. OP
    OP
    FLStateOX

    FLStateOX LawnSite Member
    Messages: 5

    I get the emerging preference for EFI, but does it still apply when the choice is between these two specific engines? From what I can find the Vanguard has 10% more torque than the Kawasaki.
     
  10. puppypaws

    puppypaws LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 9,288

    EFI if far advanced in every way to a carburetor type engine, if this were not the case your vehicles would still utilize a carburetor.
     

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