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World's First Used Combine Sales Center
"We think used combines make more sense than trying to sell new machines to financially-strapped farmers," says C.W. Harlan, manager of the world's first "Used-Combine Center" at Wichita, Kan.
Reacting to sluggish combine sales, Massey-Ferguson selected its company store in Wichita to test the new program which Harlan helped design. "Our goal is to sell at least 100 used combines by the end of July," he told FARM SHOW two weeks ago. "Used combine prices have dropped significantly, compared to the factory cost of new combines which has remained steady. Consequently, we believe that reconditioning used combines and guaranteeing their performance makes more sense than selling new. For example, a reconditioned two-year old combine on our lot, backed by our full 12 month warranty on parts and labor, costs right at $47,000. That same machine purchased new carries a $90,000 price tag."
The Used-Combine Center has right at 50 used machines on the lot, most of which have been painted, reconditioned, appraised and carry a warranty. Three warranty levels are offered:
1. AAA The best available, it's comparable to warranty coverage on a new machine. Covers 100% parts and labor on the entire combine for 12 months.
2. AA Covers 50% parts and labor on the engine, drive train and threshing mechanism for 12 months.
3. A Covers 50% parts and labor on the engine and drive train for 12 months or 300 hours.
Suppose a customer's considering a used MF410 (1972 model) equipped with a 16-ft. floating cutterbar. It's been painted and put into "field ready" condition, carries an "A" level warranty and is priced at $7,250. If the buyer desires, he can pay another $500 to upgrade coverage to the "AA" level warranty. On newer used machines a "AA" warranty can be upgraded to "AAA" for $2,000.
In addition to guaranteed performance, the Used-Combine Center issues a Parts Certificate worth 2 to 4%, of the purchase price, depending on the machine's age, condition and other factors.
"This credit slip applies not only to parts for the combine but can also be applied as credit on parts for his Massey-Ferguson tractor, if he owns one," explains Harlan.
Lower interest is another "bonus" built into the new program for selling used combines. "Our going interest rate for financing new combines is currently right at 6.9%. Pre-owned combines, on the other hand, can be financed through Massey for only 4.9% interest," notes Harlan.
Farmers from a dozen or more states have shopped for combines by phone or in person since the Used-Combine Center program was launched April 4. "We've tried to make shopping for a used combine easy and even fun," says David Walker, territory manager. "Interested buyers can walk around the lot to view the 50 or so pre-owned machines offered for sale. ID cards on each machine are color coded to show price range. A fact sheet for each combine gives the hours of use, the previous owner's name and address, a rundown of what was done to fully recondition or "field ready" the machine, and dozens of other facts and figures, including price, the type of warranty it includes, and value of the free Parts Certificate credit slip.
"Although most of the machines we offer are Massey makes and models, we do have other brands. And we take all makes and models in trade," notes Walker. "If a customer doesn't find exactly what he wants on our lot, we'll attempt to locate the combine and bring it up to the buyer's standard."
For more details, contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Massey-Ferguson Used-Combine Center, 1300 South West St., Wichita, Kan. 67213 (ph 316 942-2269).

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1986 - Volume #10, Issue #3