Trends in Tractors

By: Roger Stirnimann

Presented by

Roger Stirnimann, lecturer in agricultural engineering at the Bern University of Applied Sciences, looks at the trends in store for Europe at this year’s Agritechnica

Plenty of innovations are in store for Agritechnica 2019. Image courtesy DLG, S. Pförtner
Plenty of innovations are in store for Agritechnica 2019. Image courtesy DLG, S. Pförtner.

With tighter emissions limits being introduced to European tractors over 56kW (75 horsepower) from January 2020, companies are finding new ways to meet the guidelines. 

A trend towards reduced gas recirculation rates, or even their complete omission, is emerging – with Fendt now doing away with exhaust gas recirculation in its new Vario 900 large tractor model series.

The diesel oxidation catalytic converter (DOC), diesel particulate filter (DPF) and selective catalytic reduction (SCR) exhaust gas aftertreatment systems are increasingly being contained in compact single modules and positioned outside of the engine area.

*Improvements are being offered to powershift gearboxes, with Case IH to now offer a 21/5 full powershift gearbox on its Magnum 400 tractor with which the vehicle can be driven at both 40 and 50 km/hr at a reduced engine speed.

With the "Valtra Powershift Revolution", meanwhile, the Agco Group company is now offering the joystick operating logic familiar from the stepless Direct gearbox for the Versu partial powershift gearbox.

*Both New Holland and John Deere are presenting systems designed to reduce the shocks caused by large balers in tractor cabs.

Deere is offering intelligent vibration damping in which piston shocks are compensated by briefly changing the speed in the stepless gearbox.

New Holland is equipping its T7 tractor model series with a baling mode that also functions with large baling machines from other manufacturers, with the piston shocks intercepted thanks through a modified front axle suspension set-up and a steeper engine cut-off curve setting.

*Digitisation has definitively arrived in tractors, with several manufacturers presenting telemetry systems, albeit with different focuses.

With Valtra Connect, this involves efficient fleet management, TIM remote diagnosis from Kubota is focused on the simplified, brand-independent fault analysis of tractor/implement combinations and TracLink Smart from Lindner is concerned with automatic implement recognition using SmartTags and web-based setting recommendations.

With FendtONE, Fendt is trying to eliminate boundaries between the tractor and the office – with four monitors showing display areas to be installed in a redesigned cab on the 700 series and the top 300 series model, the 314.

*Case IH will offer a new steering assistance system through automatic brake pulses at the rear wheels for both the semi-caterpillar and the wheeled models on its Magnum model series as semi-track drives become increasingly popular for large tractors.

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