COMING SOON: Versatile 620hp 4WD tractor review

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The Versatile 620 is the most powerful four wheel drive articulated tractor in the new series currently being launched in Australia, Tom Dickson was there.

COMING SOON: Versatile 620hp 4WD tractor review
The full review on the 620hp Versatile tractor will appear in NFM magazine issue 6, on-sale February 24.

A newly formed alliance between Canadian-based tractor manufacturer Versatile and Australian machinery importer and distributor Power Farming Group (PFG) Australia heralds the introduction of thirteen new Versatile tractor models back into the Australian market.

Held at PFG Australia’s Derrimut, Melbourne head office, the launch concentrated mainly on providing information to Australian dealers on the 270hp, 300hp and 320hp MFWD Row Crop Tractors.

The 395hp, 425hp, 460hp, 520hp, 570hp and 620hp models make up the Articulated Four Wheel Drive range. The series is completed by the DeltaTrack 460hp, 520hp, 570hp and 620hp Track range.

Versatile Manufacturing Ltd of Canada was officially incorporated in 1963 but its name first appeared on grain augers and sprayers sold by Peter Pakosh and Ray Robinson in 1947.

After a series of incarnations through a range of brands, the latest being New Holland, Versatile has returned to the name synonymous with the world’s first mass produced four wheel drive tractors.

In 2007, Buhler Industries President Dmitry Lyubimov, whose Russian combine manufacturer Rostelmash Inc had just bought 80 per cent of Versatile’s common shares, vowed the brand name and associated reputation would again be honoured.

 "We recognise the history that is tied to the Versatile name," Lyubimov said.

"There are still many older Versatile tractors working on farms around the world. The name stands for well-built tractors that are powerful, simple and easy to maintain.

"It is the same philosophy we use today and we are proud of that heritage. It is with great pride we announce that the Versatile name is back."

Tuesday 17th December 2013. I feel like I am back at school again.

I sit with about fifty dealers from across Australia in a darkened room all quietly watching a Versatile presentation and listening to Product Manager-Tractors Ryan Shust talk about the new Versatile 620 four wheel drive articulated tractor.

Shust’s explanation of Versatile’s current philosophy is virtually exactly the same as its original one nearly fifty years ago.

He says the Versatile 620 is SIMPLE to operate, easy to MAINTAIN, provides terrific all-round VISION and is a very COMFORTABLE environment in which to work.

"These are the key factors that give Versatile such a good name and we will not deviate away from this direction."

We can all see the 620 parked out in the yard and quite frankly just want to get out there and have a look at it, and hopefully a drive.

It must have some sort of optical illusion technology built into the design, because even though I know that it’s a fair size, it initially doesn’t seem that big.

But as I walk closer the 620 begins to grow and grow and GROW. It’s huge, but it looks fantastic.

The 620 is a bit like Ayres rock, we’ve all seen it in pictures but until it is seen in real life it cannot be fully appreciated.

By the time I get alongside I am dwarfed by the magnitude of its stature. If I reach I can just touch the top of the tyres. 

The colour scheme gives the 620 a much more powerful and imposing look. Not that anything this size needs a lot of help in this regard. And who’s going to argue.

This awesome machine is powered by a 620hp Cummins QSX 15 litre six cylinder turbo charged diesel engine coupled with a Caterpillar 16-speed powershift transmission.

The deep powerful throaty exhaust noise screams out that the 620 just wants to be hitched up to something and start pulling.

In an era when everyone is so conscious of every sort of pollution including noise pollution I still love it when I can hear the powerful sounds of a well-tuned motor.

Shust says Versatile selected the Cummins QSX 15 during the development of the HHT series to optimise the performance of the tractor.

The result is an efficient and reliable high horsepower tractor that will work hard for years to come.

The Versatile 620 has been designed to be tier 4 compatible to meet market demand so the 620 has additional ventilation at the rear of the engine to aid the system to maintain safe working temperatures.

An ingenious addition to the 620’s cooling system is a fan that has adjustable fins.  When the engine is cold the fins run virtually flat therefore creating no resistance and minimising hp loss.

As the engine warms the fins automatically move to create more angle drawing more air through the radiator. 

Additionally the tractor computer can be set to routinely reverse the fan to blow dust back out the cooling system. 

Apart from checking the air cleaner the only time I have to get off the ground for service is filling the mid mount 1514 litre fuel tank. 

Shust explains the benefits of a centre mounted fuel tank very simply, "The 620 has been designed to have exactly 55 per cent of total weight distributed over the front wheels and 45 per cent over rear wheels."

This means when the tractor begins to pull, more weight is transferred to the rear resulting in 50/50 weight distribution.

The centre mount tank can be anywhere between full and empty without changing this ratio meaning maximum traction all day.

Read Tom Dickson’s full review in the February 2014 issue of NewFarmMachinery Magazine on sale February 24. Subscribe to the magazine to have it delivered to you.

Click here to find Versatile tractors for sale.

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