HUSQVARNA R 322T AWD
Don't even think about a different riding mower
I spent so much time researching (a good half a year)... I was looking for a machine to handle about an acre of lawn but would give me the flexibility to run other equipment like a snowblower, and some pull equipment like a tine harrow (for a gravel driveway). I have some trees and a few smaller hills.
I have owned the machine since June of this year and really had no intention of writing a review. However, every once in awhile you run into product where it becomes clear the designers had a magical moment and actually built a better mouse trap, so to say. Here are a few things that this mower does better than anything I have ever used (and I have been a professional landscaper and designer in the past and used nearly everything out there):
- Handles hills wonderfully. I took it over a buddy's house to help him install his lawn by using my harrow to grade and rake the soil. He has enormous hills and the tractor handled them very well even pulling the heavy time harrow. This mower handles hills like a mountain goat. I found it very challenging to keep a zero turn going straight when crossing a hill. The front end wants to drop requiring constant correction. The same thing happens with traditional riders only worse as correction is often not possible. With its AWD, this rider just mows across hills effortlessly. The AWD makes up and down hills actually enjoyable with little or no risk of slip and seemingly unlimited power.
- No trimming (zero). I use a Roundup type vegetation killer around my trees a couple times a year (careful not to spray the leaves on the smaller plants) and with the 11" turning radius trimming is a thing of the past. In fact, I use the vegetation killer to create about a 5" strip (barrier) around any stationary object in the yard and get a beautiful professional edge whether needing straight or natural lines along beds and structures. The front mounted deck is the final piece to having a zero trim lawn. I can scoot directly up to objects that can't be reached from the side. A zero turn or tradional rider just can't because the mid-mounted deck.
Great handling:. I know zero turns usually have great transition between forward and reverse but this articulating mover is just as smooth with its foot peddles. The auto breaking feature makes for a nice slow down if used gently and the transition into reverse is smooth as silk. Using reverse is so fast and efficient, I find myself sometimes backing up even when I could do a 365 degree turn. This flexibility has allowed me to mow using diagonals and other directions to keep cutting angles variable from week to week.
In the end, Huskvarna didn't invent anything new with this mower. Front mounted, rear engine, rear turn mowers have been around for decades. What Huskvarna did accomplish was to put a mower with these qualities within reach of any homeowner that was willing to purchase a rider in the first place.
October 28, 2012
My New 322
Fist I will say that I bought my 322AWD without being able to drive, sit on, or touch a unit.
The main reason I bought the unit and even gave it a thought was the AWD feature. It works great! I have a 12 acre rolling hill with a steep dam on one side of a 1 acre pond. I also have rough terrain with many growing obsticles, therefore the articulation has made easy work of ALL obsticles.
If the above two features would not have caught my eye then the very first reason I looked at the 322 was the fold up front deck mower unit. There are three deck choices as of this review, and I chose the 48" (widest cut). I did order a mulch kit for use from time to time.
So, all said, my experiance is the mower cuts better,tracks better, better traction, and blade acess than I had expected. The powder coated frame etc. is what should be done to all mowers and tractors IMHO.
The front deck mower does allow one to move the front of the mower very close to what neeeds to be cut as long as there is room for the front deck wheels. I can cut past steep edges on my pond due to the cutting deck being in front of the front tires. This limits my need to weedeat around the pond as much.
I had some reservation of a mower deck and supporting brackets holding up to the rigors of rual mowing, but having now, after several mowing sessions, seen the unit in action, know the unit is built to last.
After just one review of the steps (three or four) to prepare the deck for lifting it is not an issue any more to tilt the deck up for blade service. In Short, a great design.
I have a need for easy deck and blade acess and this unit fits the bill at thousands less than the few competitiors who offer a simular setup.
In the end, this unit fills a nich, cost wise, between a lawn tractor and a more comercial unit that are more expensive to have the same features. It is a bit more than most lawn trctors, but most are not AWD and that in and of itself splits the work between two drive units instead of one. I think as well that will add to the life of the units as well as make it safer to traverse steeper grades than most lawn tractors.
All above said, if you can get past the price difference, and need or want the feaures of this unit, buy it, you will not be dissapointed. If you are still not sure,try to find one and look at it before you decide otherwise because the units' quality will sell itself.
I do want to say as well, that I am just a average guy, looking for a mower to do what I needed. For sure Husquvarna was not my first choice as I started looking, but with review of many units and unit features, I wanted the R 322t AWD. The 322 could not be touched at it's price point. With extra attacments it could be even more versatile.
I have a tractor,so my need was pretty specific and my yard looks better for it.
May 10, 2013
This mower is the best lawnmower, snow clearer, street sweeper... I've ever owned. I use this machine for almost everything, and it does the job way beyond expectations. I mid this mower about mid 2011 and there have been no problems. It is a little expensive, but it is worth it.
January 9, 2013
Easy to use
I upgraded from a ride on lawnmower to cut our 1.5 acres and what a difference the Rider has made, we have small hills and a lot of trees and probably cut the yard work by half! The rider will cut the hilly areas where the ride on couldn't . I have purchased the snow blade and will send up date after the snow starts. If you get to try one, you will probably buy one!
October 30, 2012
I have had this mower for around a month and it has far exceeded my expectations. I mow around 2 acres of a hilly,uneven yard. This machine never wants to slip, slide, or spin. At times I wish it had a 54" deck instead of a 48", but the 48" works just fine. I have used several diferent zero turn mowers in purstuit of the mower I wanted to buy, including Husqvarna's, and even though this machine is slower than almost all zero turns I think it mows much better than a zero-turn. The only down-side I have found is that since the steering is a direct linkage cable driven you can feel every little bump in the yard. Power steering would have been a nice feature to eliminate that issue. However, I would still recommend this machine over a zero-turn any day for residential uses especialy if your yard isn't flat.
May 18, 2012
I have had this machine for 2 years and if you have a lawn with hills and slopes...this is the machine for you!!! I have 2 acres of very hilly lawn. I have had several regular riding mowers and the front ends just don't hold up due to the stress in doing the side hills. I can mow places and on slopes where no regular riding mower would dare to go!! No slips, slides(particularly going down hill) or losing traction. This thing is literally a "Mountain Goat" and it
does a great cutting job to boot!!
Handles very nicely and maintenance and repairs have been minimum.
May 4, 2012