Michelin pressure trial shows less is more

A new trial has demonstrated that Michelin's innovative Ultraflex Technology tyres can save farmers fuel
A new trial has demonstrated that Michelin's innovative Ultraflex Technology tyres can save farmers fuel
Derek Casey

Derek Casey

Tyre specialists Michelin claim the results of a new trial shows that their Ultraflex Technology tyres can save farmers hundreds of euro in fuel every time they drill a field.

In the trial, Michelin's XeoBib tyres were fitted to a Massey Ferguson 6616 tractor operating with a Kuhn power-harrow and drill combination across a 100ha field.

With the front tyre pressures set at 20 psi and the rear pressure set to 30 psi, it cost €1,372 in fuel to drill the field, leaving an average rut depth of 133mm. These pressures, claimed Michelin, simulated the tyre pressures required for a conventional agricultural tyre and the tyre loads measured.

However, when the pressures were dropped to 7 psi for the front tyres and 13 psi for the rear - pressures the innovative Ultraflex Technology tyres can handle - the cost was just €811, resulting in a total saving of €561. The rut depth was also lower - an average of just 88mm and this left sub-soil compaction significantly reduced as well.

"The figures really speak for themselves. The benefits of Michelin's Ultraflex Technology lie in its ability to be run at incredibly low pressures.

"Not only has it paybacks for the soil by reducing compaction, but the enhanced traction also means that the wheels don't slip as much, which explains why it uses less fuel to complete the job," said Gordon Brookes, technical manager for Michelin's Agriculture division.

"It's more than a decade since we brought our first Ultraflex tyres to market, and this demonstration proves the innovation is as relevant in 2015 as it was the day it was created."

These tyres were also the first that could travel at speeds of up to 65km per hour, whilst operating with exceptionally low pressures.

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Last year the range was expanded with the CargoXBib high flotation tyre for trailers.

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