Last fall, Claas introduced a full suite of telematics tools on 600 and 700 Series Lexion combines. Now it has added its Jaguar 900 Series self-propelled forage harvesters to its telemetry offerings. All 900 Series forage harvesters come from the factory with a modem and integrated GPS receiver necessary to use the company’s optional remote diagnostics and telematics packages. For Lexion combines, the hardware is optional.

The Claas telematics system monitors 35 combine measurements, as well as on-board computer messages, alarm and maintenance codes. The system collects critical data, including yields, grain losses, fuel efficiency, unloading waiting times and other efficiency factors, several of which can be displayed graphically as an overlay on Google Earth. A Google Earth interface is also used to monitor machines in real time.

Although Claas’s telematics package is relatively new in the U.S., more than 2,500 customers worldwide have used it since it was first offered to customers in 2005, says Reinhold Maehler, a Claas product specialist.

“The system also provides instant access to yield data,” Maehler says. As each field is harvested, yield data can be uploaded to the Claas Web server, then downloaded to an office PC for use in Ag Leader SMS and Claas software. Trimble Farm Works software is currently being adapted and will soon be capable of using the file format.

The remote diagnostics tool enables a dealer or other service provider to have remote live access to a machine’s CANbus to diagnose problems or errors. The dealer also has limited access to machine data, such as engine/working hours, alarm and maintenance messages, and component speed and status, to enable dealers to provide immediate service maintenance recommendations, he says.

First-year suggested retail price for combine telematics packages is $3,380, and $2,830 for forage harvesters. Second-year license fees are lower. A remote diagnostics-only subscription is $1,200/year for combines and $999/year for forage harvesters. More information is available from Claas dealers, or by visiting www.claasofamerica.com.