Claas unveils Axion 900 tractor series

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Claas has launched what it describes as “the world’s first fully suspended half-track tractor” to the Australian market.

The Axion 900 series has two models with Claas’ Terra Trac concept – the 930 and 960 – which combines the benefits of wheeled and track tractors by offering front wheels and rear tracks.

Comfort, efficiency and fuel economy were the main aims with the new models, Claas’ product specialist James Harrison says.

"There’s nothing like this on the market and we believe it’s going to be a big game changer for Australian farmers from an efficiency and comfort point of view," he says.

The 960 Terra Trac is the star attraction in Claas’ new range, boasting a 445 horsepower (327kW) engine, 1860Nm of torque at only 1400rpm and an 860L fuel tank to ensure it can comfortably run for a 12 hour shift in the paddock.

Claas has unveiled the Axion 960 Terra Trac tractor

Claas’ 930 Terra Trac also offers the 860L fuel tank – and both have the same overall size of 6.25m in length, 2.23m in height and a 2.95m wheelbase – however the 930 is a 350hp (237kW) model with 1695Nm of torque at 1400rpm.

Both are fitted with Stage 5, 8.7L FPT engines, have ZF continuously variable transmission, speed ranges of between 0.05km/h and 45km/h and are available with belt widths of 635mm and 735mm, with a 457mm option planned for next year.

Other features include an 11 tonne rear linkage lift capacity, hydraulic trailer brakes and optional pnemuatic air brakes plus a 30cm terminal in the cabin with ISOBUS compatibility.

Two evaluation units have already completed more than 500 hours of testing across Australia in a variety of settings and these will now become demonstration units travelling along the country’s east and west.

Claas says customers commented on the size and variety of implements which could be used with the tractors, plus the lack of heat which the track picked up, even when travelling between farms on hot days.

The Axion 960's cabin features a 30cm screen and has been designed for operator comfort

Claas’ country sales manager Julian Kollmeyer said at the launch the Terra Trac system aimed to minimise soil compaction and said it had been a complex design process for the company.

"Having a tractor and having a Terra Trac system that was initially designed for a combine - it’s not just plug and play," he said.

"We had to make dedicated engineering on the track itself to transfer the power, to transfer the torque and also to cope with the different load spectrums that are certainly different from a combine.

"We had to change the rear axle on the tractor to make it suitable for the track unit and also by having the big tyres removed from the tractor we were able to fit a bigger fuel tank.

"With the track unit that we have on the tractor today, we actually have a bigger footprint of around 35 per cent than what you know from a usual tyre.

"Also what makes a difference for a half-track in comparison to a full-track tractor is that we have a pivoting point of the track unit and we have a very even load distribution across the whole track, even in hilly conditions."

The first Axion 900 tractors available for customer purchase in Australia are currently in transit and will be available through Claas dealers.

An 11 tonne lift capacity is one feature of the Axion 960's rear linkage

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