Tractor Wars 4. Branson vs. Mahindra

branson-3725-hstmahindra-2538-hst

Hello. Thanks for stopping by. This will be our final round in this series, so if you are new to the site take a look thru our archives. You won’t be disappointed. In the mean time, come on and ride along with us on our final Tractor Wars* Test Drive.

Recently while traveling out of town, I took a little time out to visit a large Mahindra dealer and take a closer look at a 2538 HST. On paper it appeared to be a good competitive match up with the Branson 3725 HST.

As with our other competitions, we will be judging on Specification, Build, Ability & Pricing. I will then give you my personal assessment of the tractors. It will be up to you to decide though, which tractor is right for you. So lets get started.

TRACTORS                 Branson 3725 HST                           Mahindra 2538 HST

SPECIFICATIONS:

Engine                         37 HP 4 cylinder                               37.4 HP 4 cylinder

PTO H.P.                      32 HP                                                   31 HP

Weight w/ Loader     5,314 lbs.                                             4,115 lbs.

Transmission            3 Range HST                                       3 Range HST

PTO Speed                  540/540e                                              540

Hydraulics                 15.4 GPM                                             11.7 GPM

Seat                             Suspension/reclining                    pan/spring suspension

Steering                    power/tilt                                           power/tilt

Front axle                 4 wd/no drag link                            4 wd/drag link type

3 pt. hitch                3,306 lbs. @ ball                              2,646 lbs. @ ball

Loader                       Q.A. with subframe                      Q.A. with subframe

Loader capacity      2,100 lbs. @ 8.7 feet                    1,634 lbs. @ 8.5 feet

Q.A. Bucket             Yes                                                     Yes

Warranty                 4 yr.std. 7 yr. optional                 7 yr. std. powertrain

BUILD:

This was my first look at both of these tractors, so I took my time getting familiar with each one. The Mahindra that I tested was outfitted with both an optional right hand step and cruise control (both of these were standard items on the Branson).  My first observation on the 2538H, was that, like the Branson, has steel body panels that I really like to see on tractors. I found the 2538 seat hard and the loader mounted joystick uncomfortable. The tilt steering is a nice standard feature. I did find the throttle lever somewhat awkwardly hidden behind the steering wheel. The standard solid mudguards made it a bit hard to see the front tire area, but are better than nothing. I was disappointed to see an old fashioned non-telescoping 3 point hitch.    On the Branson, I felt that climbing onto the 3725 was tight, but once I was in the seat, it felt comfortable and the seat was incredible. There are some standard items on the Branson I love. cruise control, rear work light, see-through mud guards, 2 speed PTO,  fender mounted controls and a telescoping 3 point hitch.

ABILITY:

Both Tractors started easily every time. The steering on the Branson felt a little stronger under load. I assume this is because the Mahindra has 1 GPM less hydraulic on the steering pump. I can’t say that I even noticed the 1 H.P. difference between the 2 PTO systems. I’m no fan of the outdated Drag link style steering that the 2538H has. The 3725H has better steering than any tractor we tested. It was easy to feel the 1,000 pound weight advantage of the Branson. Both tractors have plenty of lifting capability on the rear though.

PRICING:

I received a quote from the Mahindra Dealer of $27,573 for the 2538 HST with 0% APR for 72 mos. with approved credit. This was the only dealer during our challenges that listed separate charges for freight, prep, doc fees etc. I was offered a $1,000 discount.

The Branson 3725H as equipped is available for $22,669 with standard 5.99% APR financing for 84 months. Or $27,979 at 0% APR for 72 mos. with approved credit.

 TRACTOR WARS* CONCLUSION:

This was indeed the closest match up of the series. But, in every category the Branson 3725H had just a little bit more than the Mahindra 2538HST.

The Branson Tractors we tested won every challenge from every competitor except 1.. Standard warranty length. Every other tractor had the same bumper-bumper warranty, but a longer duration powertrain warranty. As a mechanic with 3 decades of experience, I know that 90% of all warranty issues happen with in the first 16 months of ownership. Even so, A long warranty just feels good. So, for $600 you can lock into Branson’s  84 month extended power train warranty.

 Thank You to everyone who followed us in this series. For me, this was not only fun, It was a real eye opener. I had no idea that so many tractor companies are buying tractors from other makers and just re-marketing them.    

We have received so much feedback on this series, that we will be bringing future articles concentrating on tractor features, Such as..

  • what good is a 2 speed PTO?
  • Why is drag-link type steering inferior?
  • Why is weight so important?
  • What are Tier 4 emissions & what is “Re-Gen”?

See you next time!

 

 

 

 

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