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Great anniversary

30 January 2019

The PistenBully adventure began a good 50 years ago on the Seiser Alm in South Tyrol. A one-of-a-kind success story that is far from over...

Just for the fun of it
In 1967, nature lover Karl Kässbohrer spent his annual ski vacation at the Seiser Alm in Italy's South Tyrol. He ran the company, then known as Kässbohrer Fahrzeugwerke, together with his brother Otto. At that time, it was one of the most successful manufacturers of buses (the "SETRA") and utility vehicles.
But what was it that inspired this Swabian tinkerer to develop a snow groomer? While up on the Seiser Alm, Karl Kässbohrer had noticed the kind of slope equipment that was in deployment. He knew his company back home in Ulm could do it better. Ambition was roused-and apart from that, for once he wanted "to develop a vehicle meant only for enjoyment and pleasure". Said-and done.

There was no holding back
Just two years later in 1969, the first PistenBully was delivered. Its critical innovations were its diesel engine and hydrostatic drive. The success story took its course. To date, over 22,000 PistenBullys have been delivered worldwide. The name PistenBully has become a proprietary eponym and stands representatively for a snow groomer.

Always in the service of the customer
Out of "just developing a vehicle for enjoyment and pleasure," a globally active but still close-knit family-run company of over 600 employees has grown. PistenBully has refined the slope vehicle like no other-always in close coordination with the customer.

Not only in winter, when snow is falling.
For 28 years, Kässbohrer Geländefahrzeug AG has also been active in the summer months with its BeachTech beach cleaners. In the early 1990s, experienced and inventive engineers developed a beach cleaner with an innovative cleaning concept: the patented system composed of the rake/screen and mixed technique. This is an outstanding means of individualized adaptation to the prevailing beach and contamination situations. After intensive tests and modifications, the first commercial success came as early as 1991. The innovative cleaning process defined new standards in a market that to date had been shaped by regional companies and more agricultural machinery.

Always one step ahead
In subsequent years, BeachTech evolved into the standard for the entire industry thanks to technological innovation and new models. As early as 1999, BeachTech beach cleaners helped ensure carefree vacationing in 35 countries around the world. And they are the number one in mechanical beach cleaning with a global market share of over 50%.

Exotic deployments
Nowadays, BeachTech beach cleaners are in use in over 70 countries around the globe. From Ireland to India, from South Korea to South Africa, from Norway to New Zealand, from the United Arab Emirates to the United States-everywhere, BeachTech equipment creates groomed beaches overnight as if by magic. But even outside beach applications, BeachTech machinery is being used ever more frequently. For example, some BeachTech vehicles have begun cleaning water filtration installations, while others restore fields after harvest.

Successful in the battle against mineral oil 
Over the past few years, catastrophic oil spills have involuntarily turned BeachTech into an expert in this field. The first-aid use in four large oil spills has provided important knowledge. With a few technical modifications, BeachTech offers the best process for separating both soft oil spills and hard tarballs from the sand almost completely-without the necessity of removing half the beach as it was necessary before.

Well prepared
From the first test runs in Italy, BeachTech has advanced to become the world market leader and innovation leader. Thanks to its comprehensive product range and a global sales and service system that is unique within the industry, the beach cleaning sector of Kässbohrer Geländefahrzeug AG enjoys an excellent standing. With the acquisition of Cherrington Inc., an American company, Kässbohrer Geländefahrzeug AG expanded its BeachTech product range in 2017. Presently, 9 different vehicle types are available, which meet all demands regarding the conditions and sizes of beaches as well as the financial and technological capabilities of the customers.

Emblem for the 50-year anniversary:
At PistenBully, "Freundschaft" ("friendship") has been front and center all along
Kässbohrer snowmobile – KSM 001:
Sparking idea: With its hydrostatic drive system, at the end of 1968, the first prototype lined up for a test run.
The new BeachTech 2500 with numerous innovations