Toro Grandstand 36 vs Exmark Vantage 36

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by PremierT&L, Mar 5, 2012.

  1. PremierT&L

    PremierT&L LawnSite Member
    Messages: 224

    I'm getting ready to buy 2 36 standers. I know these mowers are very similar, however what are the differences. Price and dealer support are going to be about the same. I have heard the exmark mulches better and the deck has a little more float than that of the toro, but I haven't used either yet. I have a demo of the exmark set up for this week, but probably won't get a chance to demo the grandstand. Thanks for any input!
  2. f50lvr2

    f50lvr2 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 277

    If they are the same as the larger versions I much preferred the control feel of the exmark. Not sure why it felt different but it seemed much smoother. Also the speed control on the exmark works simply limits the movement of the levers and I believe the Toro regulates the flow through the hydro motors.

    They're so similar I'd get whichever was cheaper or from whatever dealer you prefer.
  3. yardguy28

    yardguy28 LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,463

    I own an 09 52" grandstand. when it was in the shop for a week I had a 52" vantage as a loaner.

    the exmark did seem to drive smoother.

    what I noticed being different besides the deck was the adjustable front bar and the controls were a bit larger.

    that's about it.

    you can't go wrong with one though. they are both great pieces of equipment.
  4. Cadger

    Cadger LawnSite Member
    from Florida
    Messages: 13

    I'm going to start up soon (newbie here) and I plan to buy the Exmark...most seem to agree that it has a better deck. The other day I stopped and talked to a crew in a Sam's Club parking lot, they had a Toro on their trailer. To my surprise, they said that they had run both brands and all four of them insisted that the Toro holds better on a hill. I had thought the only difference was the deck.

    I did not think to ask them if both machines had similar tires, but I don't see much variety of tires in any machine I've looked at. I also didn't ask if both machines had the same deck width...that might make a difference because I believe the machines are designed so that the wheels are moved outboard to accommodate wider decks. Wider track with about the same weight could substantially improve hill performance.

    Anyway, in asking everyone I run into for advice, I find I get LOTS of conflicting advice and I have to discount much of it and go with my gut. In my case, I want the "better" deck and the Exmark dealer seems easier to work with and has a better reputation.
  5. yardguy28

    yardguy28 LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,463

    my 52" grandstand handles hill exactly like the 52" vantage I had as a loaner for awhile.

    as for better deck. I think exmark and toro put out an equally quality cut.
  6. PremierT&L

    PremierT&L LawnSite Member
    Messages: 224

    Are the 2 machines equal. If you could buy either 1 which 1 would you buy? Thanks.
  7. jbell36

    jbell36 LawnSite Bronze Member
    from KANSAS
    Messages: 1,417

    the major difference i can see between the two, only for the 36" inchers though, is the height adjustment lever...the toro's is much smoother and it locks into place...for some reason they don't do this on the bigger's an awesome setup, i've actually used one...the exmark doesn't do it though, kinda weird...if that was the deciding factor i would go with toro all the way...but here the best dealer offers exmark only so we would probably go exmark...oh, the toro's also look better imo, haha, kind of stupid i know but when you are spending that much money on a mower you might think about it...

    in about a year i believe we are going to trade our grandstands in and get 4 exmarks, mainly because of dealer support...(they dropped their toro line a year after i bought mine, of course...)

    oh also, the decks on the toro (48" +) have a point to them on the left (non discharge side) that will catch obstacles much easier and harder, the exmarks are more or less curved and would slide past easier...just some things i've noticed between the two since we are in the market also...
  8. yardguy28

    yardguy28 LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,463

    next time around i'll be getting the vantage.

    one big reason is because my dealer was forced to choose between toro or exmark from toro buying exmark. they chose exmark.

    also exmarks controls are larger and the fron bar is adjustable.
  9. BestImpressions99

    BestImpressions99 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 491

    Funny I have a thread on here "dealer steering us away from stander" or something similar to that. Our exmark dealer told us to steer clear of standers. They Vantage was a dangerous machine to them. Funny thing is the Grandstand is Awesome.
  10. Green Skapes

    Green Skapes LawnSite Member
    Messages: 20

    When it comes to stand-on mowers, I would ONLY buy a Wright Stander. We use Wright and Ferris mowers. My mowers will cut better than any out there any day of the week! :usflag:

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