After eight years of wear and tear, Lakeview’s golf carts have reached their path.
Following the Mitchell City Council’s recent approval to open the bidding process, Lakeview Golf Course officials will begin their search for a new fleet of 48 carts. With the condition of the existing golf carts, Lakeview Golf Superintendent Jason Gunnare said the time is right for an update.
“We were hoping to push them another year, but with what we’re seeing for value-wise, it makes more sense to move forward now with buying new ones,” Gunnare said. “They are aesthetically starting to decline, and mechanically they are just taking more and more work on a yearly basis.”
He said it's typical for Lakeview to update the cart fleet after seven to eight years. Gunnare anticipated the costs of repairing the golf carts to remain fully functionable for another summer season would hover around $5,000.
While the city-owned course tries to limit new equipment purchase, Gunnare said golf carts are a big part of the course’s overall image. That’s why buying new carts is a vital component when the time comes to update the fleet of rental golf carts.
“The golf carts are really a big part of the course’s image because that’s what most people are driving and see while playing on the course,” Gunnare said.
According to Nathan Powell, interim golf and cemetery director, the current golf carts will be traded in to help offset the costs of purchasing a set of new carts from the bids received, which he estimates will cost roughly $100,000. Powell noted there’s currently a strong demand for used golf carts.
“We looked at what we might get next year if we traded them, and we would lose $15,000 if we did wait another year with the $5,000 maintenance costs included,” Powell said.
Among the criteria that Gunnare said the course looks for in golf carts includes a gas-powered fleet.
“Fuel injected, gas powered and suspension are the features we look for when we’re buying new carts,” Gunnare said.
With the high volume of golfers that rent carts while playing Lakeview’s course, Gunnare said they are big revenue drivers. Aside from memberships and greens fees for playing rounds of golf in the summer season, Gunnare said cart rentals are next in line for top revenue generators at the course.
“You want your high-end money makers in their best condition,” Gunnare said.
To bring in a new fleet of carts in time for the upcoming golf season, Powell said bidding will open up in February.