Claas UK has opened its own Customer Experience Centre at its Saxham headquarters, part of a £25m investment in the site.

In a prominent location near Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk, Saxham Business Park has been the UK subsidiary’s base since original importer Manns purchased three acres of land in 1949.

Saxham now houses the Claas UK business, Claas Finance (operated by BNP Paribas), the company’s parts warehouse, a 10-bay workshop for Manns’ dealership business and the Claas Academy, which provides land-based service engineer apprenticeship training.

The 33,000sqm headquarters building completed in 2020 also incorporates what Claas has dubbed the Tecnoparc, a full height, glass fronted machinery showroom used for customer visits and promotions.

Latest addition is a field training area to the rear of the buildings, spanning 2.8ha and designed as an all-weather test centre for use 365 days of the year. An oval surfaced track with banked section offers a general driving opportunity, while a sand ‘arena’ at its centre is designed for demonstrating and test-driving GPS capability such as autosteer.

At the other side of a central walkway, a clamp offers sections for testing tractor loaders, telehandlers and wheeled loaders; rubber crumb is used to represent maize and can safely be loaded, pushed up or driven on in any weather conditions. Completing the facility is a new building for training and hospitality. Additional land alongside is available for cultivation demonstrations while a further field can have a grass crop established.

Claas UK CEO Trevor Tyrell commented: “We took the decision to withdraw from UK shows and invest instead in our own Customer Experience Centre at Saxham. In 20 weeks of operation it has already hosted 15-20 customers a day, four days a week.”

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