I purchased one of these machines last year - new old stock. Its a 2005 model, but like I said, otherwise new and unused. I did buy it based on reading reviews on the internet - were it not for those reviews I wouldn't have known that a 2-stroke 2-stage machine was even made. Once I found out it existed, I made it my mission to find one.
Had a chance to run it yesterday for the first time and I've got to say its a fantastically powerful machine. I used a Craftsman Professional 11/32 back-to-back with this unit on the same snow, and the Toro was definitely the more powerful unit. Perhaps the powermax system does more with less, but I know for a fact the R*Tek is a very powerful motor.
I'm super impressed with the unit - about the only quibble I have with it is the drive/auger levers. I'd rather they were reversed, or the quick stick was moved to the right side of the console. Its almost like it was designed for lefties :)
Date Purchased: March 2009 Price Paid: $600 Recommend: Yes
Abundant Power from the 2 stroke engine Little to no maintenance as a result of the 2 stroke Efficient Powermax design Long throwing distance Doesn't bog in very deep, very heavy snow (3 feet or more) Unit is very well balanced Its a 2 stroke!
Control for the chute feels like it is on the wrong side