It all started with a simple phone call from a customer to their Cat® dealer at 6 a.m. during harvest time. What happened there turned out to be one of the most spectacular “outside-the-box” examples of our commitment to service.
Here’s what happened in a California farm field in August of 1928.
The customer owned both a Caterpillar Sixty track-type tractor and a Holt combine harvester. The Cat machine had broken down in the field, and the customer lived 40 miles from the dealership. To complicate things further, a service truck would have to conquer many miles of soft roads, which was going to cause serious delay.
Knowing how important it was to keep the customer on track and on time, former Cat dealer Cousins Tractor Co. found a unique way to help. Those soft roads would have delayed a service truck...but not an airplane!
In 1928, “Fewer stops, shorter stops” was the slogan used by Caterpillar and its dealers, and Cousins took it to heart when they arranged for airplane service and delivered the parts the customer needed only one hour after the call came in. Cousins’ approach to service was so revolutionary that the story even made newspapers across California.
There is an old saying at Caterpillar, “Buy the iron, get the company.” Caterpillar has a long history of working with its dealers to create a superior support organization and provide the highest-quality aftermarket services, and from our earliest days we have placed special emphasis on the ability to provide parts and service support for machines in the field.
Just think about how far we have come! Today, Caterpillar uses “other” air services, such as drones, to collect data that will help customers better understand jobsite production and the efficiency of their machines. The common thread is the dedication to progressive, forward-thinking ways to meet our customers’ needs.
Who wouldn’t be proud of that legacy?
Cat® dealer Cousins delivering parts by plane in 1928.
Cousins parts delivery made the news across the state of California.
Cousins was originally a C.L. Best dealer, one of our two predecessor companies.