Reporoa based Murdoch Agricultural Contracting, owned and operated by couple Harry Murdoch and Samantha Parker, started by targeting a niche.
At the heart of the Pioneer 1000 and 1000-5 is a purpose-built, 999cc parallel-twin engine that is mounted longitudinally. This is a feature unique to Honda, removing right-angles in the driveline and delivering more power to the ground.
The engine delivers its power to the industry’s first fully-automated dual clutch transmission (DCT), which also incorporates a Sport Mode switch and manual paddle-type shifters for ultimate control.
Complementing the main transmission is a low-range sub-trans that doubles the number of gears from six to twelve. Meanwhile, the diff lock and turf mode functions help to increase climbing ability and reduce terrain damage.
Underpinning the unique design and helping to improve durability, the all-gear design – with no belts – provides a direct, connected feel between the accelerator and the wheels. It also reduces maintenance and transfers power efficiently.
On the five-person models, an automatic self-levelling rear suspension system maintains the appropriate ride height when fully loaded. This is done by using a series of hydraulic chambers to maximise ride comfort and maintain consistent vehicle handling.
The Honda has a large tilting cargo bed for loads, plus a massive one tonne towing capacity.
As a bonus, the 5P model features the QuickFlip function, allowing users to quickly configure the machine for personnel or cargo.
In the Pioneer 1000 cabin, a wide, comfortable bench seat offers room for up to three passengers, with hand-hold straps and a shoulder belt for the centre occupant. The hard doors, with nets on all models, protect occupants.
Ahead of the driver, large, easy-to-reach transmission and drive levers with positive detents make it easy to choose the selected gear and drive mode by sight or feel.
The Pioneer 1000 joins the well-established 500 and 700 series.