Machinery... Firing on all cylinders
We run the rule over the new models being launched by the top brands this summer
Published 22/07/2015 | 02:30
Where better to start my round up of new tractors than with the market leaders, John Deere.
It is expanding its mid-size 6R and 6M Series tractors. A total of no less than 14 new four-cylinder and large frame six-cylinder models, with Stage IV engines ranging from 110 to 195hp, will replace the current Stage IIIB compliant models from this summer.
With the 6R available from next month and the 6M from November 2015, these new full-frame tractors should sell very well in Ireland.
The new tractors feature improved manoeuvrability, enhanced operator comfort, a wide range of transmissions and up to six SCVs, as well as a premium front hitch option.
The 6R Series four-cylinder premium tractors are powered by 4.5-litre John Deere Power Tech engines rated from 110 to 135hp.
For more grunt, the six-cylinder versions feature 6.8-litre John Deere engines rated at 145 and 155hp.
All new 6R Series tractors are equipped with John Deere's intelligent power management system (IPM), which the manufacturer claims adds 15 to 31hp on the four-cylinder models, and 47hp on the six-cylinder versions.
All of these engines are designed to keep running costs at low levels and provide maximum responsiveness to load changes. To further reduce operating costs, the engines are equipped with a lifetime DPF and the 6145R and 6155R tractor models also now feature an impressive 750 hour engine oil interval.
A wide choice of transmission options will see the new Deere tractors being versatile workhorses for tillage, livestock and mixed farms as well as medium sized contracting businesses in Ireland.
Depending on the model, 6R Series tractors are available with either the power shift or continuously variable transmission.
An alternative is the advanced direct drive double-clutch transmission. Models from 110 to 155hp in the 6M Series will also be available with an optional creeper transmission to meet the needs of speciality crop producers.
The new models also feature Command Arm controls, a programmable electronic joystick as standard for hydraulic applications and the latest generation touch screen monitor, which has a swipe function display for more intuitive operation.
John Deere claims that the redesigned front axle suspension on this range now provides improved steering and driving on the road.
The 6M Series tractors are now available with a maintenance-free mechanical cab suspension which delivers smoother operation as well as reduced stress and vibration levels, and allows a 10pc higher operating speed even on rough terrain.
The 6R Series tractors offer up to six spool valves with individual pressure relief levers and a premium front hitch, while three mid-stack spools are also available to provide fast and responsive handling of implements.
The 6M Series tractors can be equipped with three rear spools and a new "power beyond" function, or, alternatively, four standard spools with three mid-stack additions.
The power beyond hydraulic system is used as a pressure/flow source for additional functions equipped with independent flow control valves.
Providing easy coupling and disengaging, John Deere has also launched new generation R Series, front loaders.
Both the 6R and 6M Series tractors are specifically designed to accommodate these versatile new loaders, but the loaders will still be compatible with older tractor ranges. Of most interest to livestock customers, these loaders will replace the current H Series models for mid-size tractors.
John Deere's loader model numbering system is also changing to align with the latest tractor model designations.
The first of three digits reflects the loader's tractor series compatibility, and is followed by two digits indicating loader size plus a letter which reflects the specification level.
This means a 623R loader is compatible with a 6M or 6R Series tractor in the mid-horsepower range, with premium specifications.
Noticeable changes on first inspection include curved booms and enhanced side and front visibility, as well as optimised positioning of the loader lights to better integrate with the tractor styling. The new loaders are also designed to cope with full front axle oscillation, maximum steering angles, fenders and large wheels.
Available from November 2015, the R Series loaders use a redesigned Z-Kinematic unit with relocated pivoting points on the boom, new bushes and an increased roll back angle to provide up to 10pc higher lift capacity.
They will be delivered as standard with new mounting frames and an automatic mast latch which allows the front loader to connect to the tractor quickly.
Buckets and tools can be just as easily attached from the tractor cab using the implement latch.