Equipment supplier Maubra – which supplies equipment manufacturer Kubota products to South Africa – has increased marketing efforts regarding the RTV-X900 utility vehicle (UTV) by placing more advertisements with printed media, increasing social media awareness of the UTV and approaching clients directly.
Maubra director Kevin Clarke points out that, while the RTV-X900 is not new to the South African and wider African markets, the company decided to increase marketing because of the UTV’s versatility in the mining, farming, security, game farm and airport industries.
The UTV can be equipped with several features that help it to adapt to its environment such as an additional windshield or seat in the middle.
Clarke explains that, without the extra seat, the RTV-X900 has a 0.46 m3 cargo bed and can carry between 730 kg and 740 kg using its 488.62 Nm of power.
The UTV is available in 898 cc and 1 123 cc overhead valve (OHV) engines. Clarke points out that OHV engines are being used because they are “more compact than an overhead cam engine of comparable displacement . . . and . . . have a less complex drive system for the camshaft, compared with overhead camshaft engines”. The camshaft is located inside the engine block, which reduces the overall size of the engine.
To help transfer power from the engine to the wheels, Kubota has installed a variable hydraulic transmission (HST) that offers several advantages. In this configuration, the HST transmits power in a compact size, exhibits low inertia and operates efficiently, as well as maintains controlled and preset speeds while driving with loads or braking, Clarke explains.
The HST can also transmit power from one prime mover, such as the engine, to multiple locations, such as each of the four wheels which can provide a faster response to acceleration changes, as well as provide dynamic braking when needed.
The HST also maintains controlled speed when reversing, regardless of whether there is a load, within the 755 kg design limits, says Clarke.
He points out that the braking system is designed to ensure that the vehicle does not creep, only moving when the transmission is engaged and the throttle is pressed. When the engine has been shut down, the vehicle cannot be moved, eliminating the possibility of a runaway vehicle.
Among the modifications and upgrades of the UTV in South Africa is the addition of a limiter that limits the maximum speed to 15 km/h for vehicles used at openpit and underground mines.
It is also equipped with a constant velocity joint, which allows power to be transmitted at an angle, and protection and skid plates that prevent irreparable damage caused by large rocks. Depending on maintenance, the skid plate and protection need to be replaced every 500 hours, concludes Clarke.