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Trimble Inc.
935 Stewart Drive
Post Office Box 3642
Sunnyvale, CA 94085
1.408.481.8000 phone
1.408.481.7781 fax

  NEWS RELEASE

 
Trimble Transforms Lightbar Guidance into Assisted or Automated Steering
for Agriculture Applications

2005 Product Line Upgradeable, Modular and Allows for Growth

 
SUNNYVALE, Calif., Dec. 1, 2004 -- Trimble (NASDAQ: TRMB) introduced today an extension to its popular AgGPS® EZ-Guide® Plus lightbar guidance system that allows EZ-Guide Plus customers the choice of upgrading to the new Trimble
AgGPS EZ-SteerTM system for assisted steering or the field proven AgGPS AutopilotTM system for automated steering.
 
"With the introduction of the EZ-Guide Plus upgrades to the EZ-Steer or Autopilot system, Trimble now offers the broadest range of GPS-based guidance and equipment automation solutions available in the agriculture market today. The 2005 product line offers a range of price points as well as features and performance to offer farmers more options to meet their specific needs," said Alan Townsend, vice president and general manager of Trimble's Field Solutions Division. "Now farmers can upgrade their EZ-Guide lightbar system to a complete range of equipment automation options to potentially empower their entire fleet with assisted or automated steering."
 
AgGPS EZ-Steer System - Assisted Steering
 
The EZ-Steer system is the most user friendly and affordable assisted steering system on the market today. For US$3,495 users can easily upgrade from the EZ-Guide Plus system to the EZ-Steer system to provide assisted steering for agricultural vehicles with 6-12 inch pass-to-pass accuracy. The system is ideal for broadacre crops and operations such as spraying, spreading, tillage, hay and silage applications.
 
The EZ-Steer assisted steering system sets a new standard by using GPS and an electric motor mounted on the steering column to keep the vehicle on line without the use of hydraulics. It uses the guidance from the EZ-Guide Plus lightbar and automatically turns the steering wheel. This allows drivers to focus on in-field tasks, such as implement or spray boom operations, to improve job quality and reduce fatigue.
 
Supported vehicles currently include 2WD tractors, 4WD articulated tractors, combines, and sprayers with power steering. Support for more vehicle models is expected to be added during 2005. For broadacre planting applications requiring higher accuracy, the EZ-Steer system with the EZ-Guide 252 receiver and OmniSTAR HP corrections may be used.
 
The EZ-Steer system is easy to install, setup, and use. Installation can typically be completed in a half-hour or less with set up taking about a minute. Once an AB or curved line is set, the engage button is pressed to begin assisted steering on the swaths. The operator can take manual control of the tractor steering by simply turning the wheel, which causes the EZ-Steer system to automatically disengage.
 
Affordability, ease of installation and portability for vehicles makes the EZ-Steer system an ideal option that allows farmers to equip much of their fleet with assisted steering. For more information, visit
www.EZ-Steer.com.
 
AgGPS Autopilot System - Automated Steering
 
For fully automated steering capabilities and higher accuracy levels, the EZ-Guide Plus system can be upgraded to the field proven Trimble AgGPS Autopilot system for operations requiring accuracy down to one inch pass-to-pass using an integrated interface to the hydraulic system of the vehicle. The system is available using DGPS, HP or RTK corrections with prices ranging from US$10,000 to $35,000. Automated steering allows vehicles to operate more hours in a day with considerably less stress on the driver. This technology translates to increased productivity for the farmer through more efficient utilization of tractors and extended working hours.
 
The AgGPS Autopilot system is ideal for all crops on any type of terrain. It can guide a tractor, combine or sprayer in straight lines, pivots, curves or headlands. It uses a 6-axis inertial measurement unit (IMU) for tilt compensation and steering angle sensors to provide very accurate vehicle control. The Trimble AgGPS Autopilot system guides the vehicle automatically in consistent rows, pass after pass. With hands-free operation, the driver can concentrate on the task at hand such as planting or material application.
 
As a display option for the AgGPS Autopilot system, the EZ-Guide Plus lightbar will also store three vehicle configurations allowing farmers to quickly swap their Autopilot system components from vehicle to vehicle. For more information on the AgGPS Autopilot visit:
www.trimble.com/AgGPS_autopilot.html.
 
EZ-Guide Plus Lightbar System - An Innovative Interface for Assisted Steering and Automation
 
The Trimble AgGPS EZ-Guide Plus is the first advanced lightbar guidance system that combines the latest in graphic LCD display and GPS technologies for only US$2,795. This system enables operators to manually steer equipment such as tractors, sprayers, fertilizer applicators, air seeders and large tillage tools with typical pass-to-pass accuracy of 12 inches or better. These advancements in lightbar technology provide vehicle operators with intuitive and accurate guidance in bright or low light, wind and dust, fog, rain or even snow.
 
Trimble's EZ-Guide Plus system can be installed in field equipment such as trucks, tractors or spray rigs in just a few minutes. Operator training takes just a few minutes more. Components include a 35-LED lightbar with integrated graphic LCD display and survey quality antenna.
 
The EZ-Guide Plus system provides the flexibility needed to be efficient in any terrain. It can be programmed for straight, curve, headland or center pivot guidance patterns. The graphic LCD screen displays intuitive turn and curve guidance, and it automatically advances to the next swath during turns for all patterns.
 
The system is fully upgradeable to grow with the user's precision farming needs, including as-applied mapping, soil sampling, flow control, variable-rate management and other functions. The system can also be upgraded to the Trimble EZ-Steer system for assisted steering and the AgGPS Autopilot for automated steering on a wide variety of vehicles. For more information visit:
www.EZ-Guide.com.
 
Availability
 
The Trimble AgGPS EZ-Guide Plus lightbar guidance system and AgGPS Autopilot automated steering systems are available now. The new AgGPS EZ-Steer assisted steering system can be ordered today from a Trimble reseller and is expected to begin shipping in February of 2005. Contact a Trimble reseller for details or call 1-800-865-7438.
 
About Trimble
 
Trimble is a leading innovator of Global Positioning System (GPS) technology. In addition to providing advanced GPS components, Trimble augments GPS with other positioning technologies as well as wireless communications and software to create complete customer solutions. Trimble's worldwide presence and unique capabilities position the Company for growth in emerging applications including surveying, automobile navigation, machine guidance, asset tracking, wireless platforms, and telecommunications infrastructure. Founded in 1978 and headquartered in Sunnyvale, Calif., Trimble has more than 2,000 employees in more than 20 countries worldwide.
 
Certain statements made in this press release are forward looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, and are made pursuant to the safe harbor provisions of the Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These statements involve risks and uncertainties, and actual results may differ materially from those discussed in this news release. Factors that could cause or contribute to such differences include, but are not limited to, the performance of the AgGPS product line, degree of customer acceptance, pricing and availability. More information about potential factors which could affect Trimble's business and financial results is set forth in reports filed with the SEC, including Trimble's respective quarterly reports on Form 10-Q and its annual report on Form 10-K. All forward looking statements are based on information available to Trimble as of the date hereof, and Trimble assumes no obligation to update such statements.
 

Media Contact:   LeaAnn McNabb of Trimble: 408-481-7808



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