August '17

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AUGUST 2017 THE SHOP 39 ride since it was a typical broken corn field with stalk stubs, but I could barely feel the difference between the gravel road and the field. PASSING THE TEST The Diesel Mule we tested was a little over 11-feet long and 5-feet wide, weighing about 1,900 pounds with a single seat and a dumping cargo bed. The thing even had seatbelts and doors, making you feel safe at all times. These little Diesel Mules are tough, and they ride smoothly with their independent suspensions. At events we have thrown 500- pound weights in the bed and the Mule still took off with no issues. Plus, they are nice enough that I have taken many sponsors on tours of the events in the Mule, making for a nice ride that beats walking. The Kawasaki plant knocks out close to 300 units a day most of the time, so everyone keeps busy pretty much year- round. I also had a chance to visit the product museum room at the plant and see the different versions of the units made over the last 20 years. It was very interesting to see how the recreational vehicle industry has progressed. I had our Diesel Mule in storage for longer than seven months during the winter. When I rolled it out, I was afraid I was going to have to jump-start it or charge the battery, but it started right up. I added a little fuel treatment and pro- ceeded to use it all week at the event in Kearney, Nebraska with no prob- lems. Building 300 of these a day shows they must be doing something right. Kawasaki Diesel Mules are built in Lincoln by tough Americans who make a tough product. RON KNOCH is president of DIESEL Motorsports (National Association of Diesel Motors- por ts), a sanctioning body formed in 2007 for diesels that promotes all diesel motorsports associations, clubs and events, and hosts diesel drag racing, sled pulling and dyno competitions. Learn more at The Kawasaki manufacturing plant near the Lincoln airport is so large that we took a four- hour tour and walked 5.8 miles and didn't see everything!

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