A New Tractor … And a Trip To France
Buying a new AGCO DT275B got Malmkar a trip to France.
By Tharran E. Gaines
When Shannon Malmkar agreed to purchase a new tractor this past fall, he thought he knew what he was getting. The tractor in question was an AGCO DT275B, the same model owned by his brother, Jarret, and one that shared a number of features with Malmkar’s Massey Ferguson® Model 7490.
“I had also driven an AGCO DT205A that Jarret rented last summer to use on the sprayer,” Malmkar explains. “So I was familiar with all the features on the tractor, including the transmission and suspended cab and front axle.”
What Malmkar didn’t know was his purchase included a little something extra. He recalls that Ron Regier, owner of Regier Equipment Co. Inc in Madrid, Neb., had been after him and his brother for several years to buy one of the new AGCO tractors. “Even though we’ve always bought White Planter® products from him, he claimed he couldn’t stand to come out here and look at “red” tractors that didn’t say Massey Ferguson on the side.
“So, like Jarret,” Malmkar adds, “I finally agreed to buy a DT275B, especially after Ron offered me a deal I didn’t think I could turn down. Then, he said, ‘Oh, and by the way, you get to go with me to France to pick it up.”
As part of a contest to honor the last AGCO brand tractor made, Regier and a guest, along with Malmkar and a guest, received an all-expenses-paid trip to Paris, which included a visit to the manufacturing facility in nearby Beauvais, France, to see the tractor come off the line. Making the party all the more festive—and his children all the happier—Malmkar opted to pay the extra expense and take his entire family.
“The whole trip was simply incredible,” he relates. “I can’t say enough about how well AGCO treated us.”
Malmkar says he was particularly overwhelmed with AGCO Corporation’s tractor manufacturing facility in Beauvais. “The factory was absolutely amazing,” he insists. “AGCO has literally revolutionized the assembly line. I was equally impressed with the quality control and the number of tests the employees run while the tractor is being assembled. They test each different assembly, such as the cab and transmission, before it’s ever installed on the tractor. Then they test the whole tractor as a unit before finishing with a rain test of the cab and a tire-driven dynamometer to check the entire drive system again.”
It wasn’t just the AGCO factory that impressed Malmkar, though. He says he was equally impressed with the history of France.
“We saw buildings that were constructed as early as the 14th century,” he muses. “To look at castles that were built before the Mayflower ever sailed to America was astounding. It was an experience we’ll all remember for the rest of our lives.”