No introduction is really needed for Ferris mowers. They are renowned for introducing suspension to the zero-turn world and at the time of writing, this machine was the only of its kind in the country, the ISX3300 with the new “Forefront” suspension and the optional 40HP Vanguard EFI-ETC engine.
Firstly, the new “Forefront” suspension sees four rather than two solid control arms, an upper and lower giving greater control and more travel. This enables the castor wheels to stay in contact with the ground and in the correct direction on rough and irregular terrain resulting in an even smother ride and neat cut at speed. Simply put, it is more comfortable and more productive.
A massive 40HP fuel injected Vanguard with “Oil Guard” technology and an electronic throttle control (ETC) provide the power to the ISX3300’s Hydro-gear ZT5400 transmissions and 61 inch cutting deck. The Oil Guard system is similar to a dry sump setup on a race engine. It is an external oil reservoir and filter with a huge 4.7 litre capacity. This keeps the oil cooler and in better condition for longer resulting in engine longevity and reduced maintenance.
Oil changes are at 500-hour intervals. You can service more frequently if you are using in extreme conditions and filter changes are mess free. The filter is simply turned to release and lifted out of the top of the tank ready to be replaced – no unscrewing externally or dripping oil everywhere.
The electronic throttle control is a rocker switch push button so no lever or cable to break. It adjusts the throttle to suit varying loads through a speed sensor on the flywheel so if you hit some longer grass or greater incline the engine responds instantaneously for more efficient mowing.
The performance advantage of the 40HP engine is worthy of discussion. The ETC system responds a lot faster to changing loads than the 37HP version, so while the power rating is 3HP different, the performance difference is really significant. While the standard 37HP engine is not wanting for power, the 40HP EFI ETC engine is a whole different level.
The 61-inch fabricated deck is Ferris’s iCD model which has been well proven for both cutting quality and robustness and has a dual belt setup. This prolongs belt life and is backed by an impressive commercial warranty on the cutting belts of three years or 400 hours, first year being parts and labour and then parts only for the second and third years.
|Vanguard EFI with “Oil Guard” and ETC
|20km/h FWD, 8km/h REV
An updated rear cowl design protects the engine and air filter assembly more so than on previous models. It also sees an angled base of the bumper giving greater ground clearance for loading and for use on uneven ground such as at the base of incline. Along with this is the handy tie down points for transportation.
Flat free front castor wheels are fitted to eliminate unnecessary downtime. The smooth ride and comfort of this mower is a standout. Combined with the mower suspension the operator also has a fully adjustable suspension seat with armrests and even a head rest. Whilst moving at speed from one area of mowing to another over uneven footpaths, driveways, and pathways the mower suspension and suspension seat effortlessly worked together to enable me to ride in comfort across terrain I would have had to crawl across in some other zero turns.
The Ferris ISX3300 performed exceptionally and with the 40HP EFI-ETC Oil Guard engine, it could be in a comparable space to operators looking into the diesel market with its longer service intervals, engine longevity and warranty features. Ferris back the ISX3300 offering very impressive commercial warranties on this machine with a 3-year unlimited hour engine warranty and a 5-year unlimited hour suspension warranty, along with the previously mentioned belt warranty, makes this an attractive package giving any purchaser piece of mind.