REVIEW: Massey Ferguson 7624 tractor

By: Matt Wood, Photography by: Guy Allen

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What is the legacy of the ‘little grey Fergie’ once a symbol of Aussie pride? Matt Wood takes a look the latest Massey Ferguson mid-range offering, the 220hp 7624 from the 7600 series.

The Massey Ferguson brand has a long and illustrious history in Australia, especially when you include the McKay-Sunshine brand purchased by Massey Harris during Australia’s post-World War II agricultural golden age.

The name is embedded in the collective memory of farmers across the country and is often seen as a brand that once reflected Australian national pride.

While some may reflect fondly on the "little grey Fergie" someone in their family used to own (and given the prices some examples have been commanding lately probably wish they still did), the Massey Ferguson brand is now a part of the global Agco Group.

The Canadian Massey brand was once the largest manufacturer in the British Empire, these days Massey Ferguson is part of the American-headquartered Agco empire and it shares a stable with brands such as Fendt, Challenger, Valtra and GSI.

 

CONTENTS

Engine and Transmission

Exterior

Cab

Comfort and Controls

Performance

Verdict

Specifications

 

MASSEY FERGUSON 7624 ENGINE AND TRANSMISSION

6358 Massey Ferguson 7624 Engine

This brings me to the relatively recent arrival of the Massey Ferguson 7624. It may be wearing a Massey badge but underneath its red nose lies a 6 cylinder 7.4-litre 220hp (162kW) Agco power engine.

The engine has its origins with Danish manufacturer Sisu (now owned by Agco) and has been designed specifically as a tractor engine. Behind the engine is a Dyna VT stepless transmission. This transmission is the very same as the one you’ll find in an equivalent Fendt with a Vario gearbox, oh and the diffs as well.

There is also the option to use a more traditional Powershift style transmission. In the case of the 7600 series you have a choice of either the Dyna 4 or Dyna 6 powershift ‘boxes, though in this case my money’s on the Dyna VT for performance and economy.

The Euro drivetrain meets Tier 3b emissions by using selective catalytic reduction (SCR), which means it does need to use diesel exhaust fluid (DEF) otherwise known as AdBlue. By using this combination of drivetrain components Massey reckons this is a very economical, selectable four-wheel drive tractor to run.

As far as the gearbox goes however, for those who aren’t up to speed on the Dyna VT, it is both a mechanical and hydrostatic gearbox using moving hydraulic pumps and motors to create an almost infinitely variable amount of gear ratios to choose from.

The swivelling hydraulic units move simultaneously to create varying hydraulic pressure on the mechanical gear train and this is effectively what makes the transmission ‘change gear’.

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MASSEY FERGUSON 7624 EXTERIOR

I never thought I’d hear myself say this, but it’s actually quite an attractive unit with a strong, purposeful look. Maybe it’s just an extension of the whole red sports car thing, or may I need to get out a bit more.

The first thing to catch my eye is the impressive lighting package, there are eight lights on the front, six on the rear, four cab-mounted and another two side-mounted; more than enough to hypnotise a foraging bunny.

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MASSEY FERGUSON 7624 CAB

Getting into the cab isn’t as ergonomic as I’d like, it’s a high reach to grab the door handles and to be honest the doors feel a bit flimsy. The inside door latches are not a great set-up and the unwary stand a chance of being bitten by the release latch when opening the door from the inside.

The steps into the cab are still in their transport position but look very low to the ground even when turned around. The uprights of the lower step are made of flexible material so there’s plenty of give in them should they strike an obstacle.

Behind the wheel of the 7600 you can’t help feel as though you’re sitting a long way back both inside the cab and on the machine itself. The actual cab structure seems a little dated with the roof feeling low inside, overhead visibility for a role like loader work is limited.

In this cab you would be forever leaning forward and up though the windscreen to keep track of the bucket. The upside of the cab layout however, is the view over the linkage and the rear of the tractor is exceptional; almost panoramic.

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MASSEY FERGUSON 7624 COMFORT AND CONTROLS

6350 Massey Ferguson 7624 Controls

Inside the cab is the Command Control Armrest to increase comfort. There’s a choice of a multifunction joystick control of spool valve controls and the cab gets some suspension to iron out the bumps.

 The ‘hamburger with the lot’ Exclusive spec doesn’t come with red carpet, but it does have the Dyna VT as standard and like the Efficient is auto steer ready. The controls inside the cab become, dare I say it, a little more Fendt-like with the addition of a multi-pad joy stick.

In the Efficient cab there are no fangdangle touchscreens, and there’s only a fairly basic looking digital menu on the steering column mounted instrument panel.

Though if you wish to go digging into that digital menu there are still a lot of functions you can unearth and parameters you can change if required.

There are three ways to make this tractor move: a foot pedal, a transmission control T-bar or the multi-function joystick. I wasn’t so enamoured with the foot pedal myself, while it’s a better option for loader work and road travel, the throttle take up of the Sisu engine’s fuel system can be savage.

If you’re not careful on rough ground it’s easy to find yourself looking like a goose as you bunny hop across the paddock, and most likely spill your thermos and scatter your sangers across the cab at the same time.

My pick was the basic T-bar which includes a PTO engagement button for intuitive use in the paddock, as it best highlights the smooth take up of the engine tranny combination. There are also two ways to change direction either the steering column mounted shuttle lever or the T-bar control.

Just behind the T-bar are buttons for cruise control, engine speed memory and headland management, which all seem well-placed while lounging in the chair with the command control armrest. The hand throttle is just a flick of the finger away from all of these controls as well.

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MASSEY FERGUSON 7624 PERFORMANCE

5953 Massey Ferguson 7624 2

There are no noticeable gear changes on this ‘Fergie’. Essentially the Massey can go from walking pace to a 50km/h road speed without noticeably changing gear. Like its green sibling from Germany the benefits of this set-up is based around ease of use and efficiency.

The engine power management system (thank God there isn’t another acronym) senses load on the engine when the power take-off (PTO) is engaged and can pull more horsepower out of its hat when duty calls.

Like the Dyna-TM system it’s all about keeping the tractor moving at a consistent speed while maintaining optimum performance and rpm without the need for the driver to be juggling sticks and dials.

I like the speed steer function for quick headland turns: a push of the button effectively changes the steering ratio of the tractor meaning fewer turns of the wheel at working speed.

For safety’s sake the function automatically disengages at transport speeds. While I’m not able to get the PTO cranked with something behind the tractor I still find the whole drivetrain exceptionally quiet even at higher rpm. Just to add to the 7624’s trailer credentials hydraulic trailer brakes are standard while air brakes are also optional.

On the move the MF handles very well and thanks to a scalloped chassis sub-frame and the lack of a full chassis, has an excellent turning circle for a machine of this size.

Another bonus gained by the extra scalloped room around the front axle and diff is the easy access to daily checks like oil levels, and easy filter access, all of which is on one side of the engine.

Another plus is the layout of the cooling system which is easy to get at and very well-spaced out for cooling efficiency. The radiator and trans cooler can be easily accessed and easy to blow dust out of, ditto for the air cleaner element.

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THE VERDICT

I find myself a little torn when it comes to the Massey. On one hand it promises to be a tough versatile tractor with a low total cost of ownership. But on the other hand, the execution seems a little clumsy. It seems like the Massey is trying too hard to differentiate itself from its stablemates.

The cab superstructure design really doesn’t match with the comfortable control layout and seat, and the doors are just plain nasty. The interface between the driver and the Sisu-Fendt drivetrain could be smoother and easier to understand.

In fact while the Fendt product has a reputation for being technologically advanced and intimidating it’s actually easier to jump in and operate cold than the Massey. And the two products share a transmission and diffs. The exception in this case would be of course the basic layout Essential spec machine.

The drivetrain is a nice set up and on the whole the 7624 appears to be a good mid-range package with real running cost and ergonomic benefits.

The MF just needs to become a little more comfortable in its skin and find a fit and finish that befits the rest of the machine.

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MASSEY FERGUSON 7624 SPECIFICATIONS

Make/model: Massey Ferguson 7624

Engine: Agco Power-Sisu 6 cylinder 7.4 litre turbo diesel with SCR

Power/Torque: 220hp (162kW) (235 (173kW) peak at 1,950rpm) / 1,030Nm @1,500rpm

Transmission: Dyna-VT stepless CVT

Max PTO power: 205hp (151kW)

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Look for the full test report in NewFarmMachinery’s May issue, on-sale May 19. Subscribe to the magazine to receive the issues at your doorstep. 

Click here to find Massey Ferguson tractors for sale.

Click here to look up Massey Ferguson tractor specifications.

5834 Massey Ferguson 7624 1 The 7624 pops out of the box with a very good lighting package. There are also 2.5m and 3m wheel track options available. 5834 Massey Ferguson 7624 1
5837 Massey Ferguson 7624 linkage The business end is accessible and free of clutter. 5837 Massey Ferguson 7624 linkage
5953 Massey Ferguson 7624 2 I may need to get out more but I reckon the 7624 is a nice looking machine; it almost looks a bit sporty. 5953 Massey Ferguson 7624 2
6350 Massey Ferguson 7624 controls A simple no digital control layout. 6350 Massey Ferguson 7624 controls
6351 Massey Ferguson 7624 dashboard This is about as high tech and digital as the Massey gets on the outside. 6351 Massey Ferguson 7624 dashboard
6358 Massey Ferguson 7624 engine The Agco Power-Sisu engine is a quiet performer and works well with the CVT. 6358 Massey Ferguson 7624 engine
6387 Massey Ferguson 7624 access Cab access is okay but the door latches aren’t great. 6387 Massey Ferguson 7624 access
6388 Massey Ferguson 7624 cooling system Air cleaner and cooling systems are easy to access and clean. 6388 Massey Ferguson 7624 cooling system

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