Etesia Pro 53

Intended as the replacement for the original Etesia 56 — now some 15 years old — we are testing the prototype of what will be designated the Pro 53. At 3cm smaller than its commercial 56cm forerunner, it has a lot going for it.
For starters, it has a more sleek, stylish design. It’s powered by a 6hp Kawasaki FC180 OHV engine — a trusty power unit with plenty of oomph. And in Etesia tradition, the deck is tough. This is 12mm steel. It makes an incredibly strong unit, but it is heavy. The Pro 53 weighs over 100kg, so you are going to need to ramp it into the van.
The deck is still under development. The final version will be more domed than the prototype. This machine will be a three-in-one unit with mulching, cut-and-drop or cut-and-collect capabilities.
But the radical change on the new model is the drive. The Pro 53 is fast.
Inspecting the back of the mower, we find it has no rear axle. This means the ejection throat is open at the bottom and is huge, making it a serious contender in long, wet grass. Instead of a chain drive to the rear wheels, the new model has a hydraulic pump and two wheel motors. In effect, it’s like a two-wheel tractor. You might reckon that is going to put the price up, but the Pro 53 is expected to be cheaper than the RKEB model it replaces. The advantage in terms of speed is remarkable and the operator can govern the speed with no danger of the mower running away.
The Pro 53 has three speed ranges in forward with variable speed in each range: 0km/h to about 2km/h; 2km/h to around 4km/h; and 4km/h to 5.5km/h. There is also a reverse gear.
You could do a lot of mowing with this machine. The vibration levels have been reduced to 3.5m/s2, which is not bad for a commercial rotary of this size. It is also unbelievably quiet.
Safety features include an EC-compliant blade brake-clutch to stop the blade rotary in less than three seconds when the OPC is released. This feature should be of interest to anyone who is repeatedly emptying the grass box or driving the mower to different sites.
The large wheels are intended to grip in difficult conditions and there is a removable front bumper for mowing up to posts. Height adjustment is from 25mm to 85mm.

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