At this year's Lamma Show, John Deere announced that its 2010 8R series tractors have broken fuel-efficiency records for large row-crop tractors at the Nebraska Tractor Test Lab (NTTL) in the USA.
The firm claims that it has achieved leading fuel-economy results in four out of the five tests at the Nebraska facility, which are designed to represent how these tractors are used in the field.
According to John Deere, in autumn 2009, an 8320R broke the 8430 model's record as the most fuel-efficient row-crop tractor ever tested in the rated engine speed PTO test.
The company added that the remaining 8R and 8RT models introduced for last year were recently assessed. Of these, the 8295R set a new fuel-efficiency record of 225g/kWh in the rated engine speed PTO test. This was achieved at a rated engine speed of 2,100rpm. Speed at the PTO was 1,048rpm. John Deere said this beats its 8320R's figure of 228g/kWh.
The company said that the 8295R also set NTTL records as the most fuel-efficient large row-crop tractor in the drawbar tests for maximum power, 75pc and 50pc of pull at reduced engine speed.
The company states that it also came within 5g/kWh of the leader of the test at 75pc of pull at maximum power.
To view the John Deere test report or any other reports on different manufacturers' tractors that have been tested, log onto http://tractortestlab.unl.edu/ testreports.htm.
Of the tests that were carried out at NTTL on the model, John Deere says that the test of power at the PTO at rated engine speed, maximum power at the drawbar and 75pc of pull at both reduced engine speed and at maximum power reflect most closely how their tractors are used in the field.
One of the recognised drawbacks of exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) is reduced fuel economy. This is partially because fuel is used to regenerate the diesel particulate filter by burning the soot out of it.
However, John Deere has proved through its Nebraska test results that this is not necessarily the case. The firm said that the cooled EGR approach to meeting the new Stage IIIB/interim Tier 4 emission regulations can deliver excellent fuel economy, without the hassle and additional expense of the second fluid required for Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) systems.
That said, there does not appear to be any tests available yet on tractors fitted with SCR, so that should make for some interesting reading.
John Deere has certainly set the bar. How will the others perform in comparison?