At GIE+EXPO 2017, Hydro-Gear unveiled a new drive technology designed to improve the operator experience and maximize performance. Known as the SMARTEC ZT DRIVE system, this first-ever production mower drive system incorporates individualized and intelligent vehicle performance while maximizing the operator’s comfort, efficiency and capability.
“For years, we’ve heard complaints of the same problems in turf care,” said Ray Hauser, president of Hydro-Gear. “With the new SMARTEC ZT DRIVE, we’re attempting to solve all those problems with the introduction of electronic controls. Introducing SMARTEC ZT DRIVE unlocks a door for users to experience drives that think fast, respond early, and are hard-wired for customization.”
Using a machine equipped with the SMARTEC ZT DRIVE system gives operators the ability to individualize performance settings to the way they like to mow. Customization is easy through MYMOW, a personalized performance interface that stores an unlimited number of settings for the same mower such as forward and reverse speed, acceleration and overall control. It is the first time this level of detailed and precise tuning has ever been possible for a mower.
SMARTEC has developed the MowNet system software, a new innovation where all components are integrated with easy plug-and-play connectivity, simplified wiring, and on-demand upgradability.
The SMARTEC MowNet App is being developed and includes the MYMOW Personalize Performance Interface. “The MowNet App allows for troubleshooting and performance management to be within the fingertips of the user,” said Alyn Brown, SMARTEC market segment manager. “With the simple use of a tablet or smartphone, customization and adjustment is possible.”
As another industry first, this system includes an optional Dynamic Stability Assist module that automatically monitors and adjusts the mower’s performance across 9 axes of motion. This pioneering innovation eliminates the need to periodically adjust the zero-turn mower’s tracking control linkages. Even more importantly, the mower will intelligently self correct its heading for straighter mowing and improve controllability on gentle slopes. Dynamic Stability Assist reduces operator fatigue while continuing to make mowing fun.
Machines may also have the capability to be produced with different operator control systems such as lap bar, steering wheel, or joysticks on the same vehicle, appealing to the preferences of the owner.
SMARTEC is currently working with turf manufacturers to refine and incorporate this drive system into future models. This SMARTEC system will be produced at Hydro-Gear’s new Indianapolis Innovation Center.