Looking around Europe, certain manufacturers sell strongly in small pockets without ever achieving blanket coverage. Sprayer maker Berthoud falls into this particular distribution camp, but through no fault of its product line – as we find out while testing the French firm’s 3,200-litre Major 32 trailed model

In the UK the Berthoud trailed sprayer has the reputation of being a value-formoney sprayer product, equipment with high output potential but unlikely to bust the farm’s capital budget when it comes to machine replacement time. As with so many other sectors, the brand’s success tends to mirror that of its representation in the region. Wherever there is a strong Berthoud dealer, the marque tends to do well, too.

Nothing new there.

It was with this in mind that we set out on our extended practical test last year of the maker’s Major 32 trailed machine, complete with 3,200-litre capacity tank and 24m wide boom. In short, are build quality and the overall performance of the sprayer compromised in a quest to attain ultra price competitiveness? Working from the front, our Major came with Berthoud’s conventional pin-hitch long drawbar rather than our preferred choice of semi-mounting on the tractor’s lower links. Semi-mounting may be a bit more of a fiddle when it comes to the job of coupling up, but it then counters with greater steering/tracking capability and being more compact. Of course, it also removes any concerns of the sprayer’s drawbar fouling on tractor lower links, which either tend to be positioned low, high or removed altogether when using the pin hitch.

We opted to run the link arms down near the ground. On ‘hitch’ procedure, Berthoud attention to detail and convenient user touches, which run throughout the machine, start to surface. A minor point, perhaps, but we like the neat hose routing design from sprayer to tractor, as well as the storage for electric cables and easy-fold park leg. Word of warning here, though: Don’t be tempted to drop a full sprayer down on to the park leg; it’s simply not up to the job and may react accordingly.

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