If your current row-crop tractor is holding you back from upgrading to a bigger planter or implement, new models for 2011 promise to provide the power and capacity required to make the leap. Three companies — Case IH, John Deere, and New Holland — launched new series of 150-plus-hp row-crop tractors for 2011, and Versatile and JCB each came out with new, more powerful models.

“The 240-plus-hp MFWD industry is growing rapidly,” says John Bohnker, marketing manager for Case IH Magnum tractors. “Farmers continue to seek bigger planters and tillage equipment, which require more horsepower to pull. Along with more horsepower, farmers are looking for more hydraulic and lift capacity to be more efficient.”

Here’s an overview of the new 2011 row-crop lineups equipped with features that raise the bar in power, performance and comfort.

 

Case IH Magnum Series

Case IH this year launched a new generation of Magnum tractors designed to offer more power, comfort and fuel economy. Nine models, ranging from 150 to 280 PTO hp, are powered by 6.7- or 8.7-liter Interim Tier 4 engines made in-house by Fiat Powertrain Technologies. The engines are the first to meet Interim Tier 4 standards using Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) emissions reduction technology, which the company claims cuts operating costs by 10% through increased fuel efficiency and extended service intervals, now at 600 hrs.

The new engines are designed to deliver up to 14% power growth before peaking out. An additional 35-hp “power boost” kicks in during mobile PTO, hydraulic and transport applications. A transmission feature called Diesel Saver Automatic Productivity Management, carried over from the previous line, determines the best gear ratio and engine rpm for the task to maximize fuel efficiency.

A new MultiControl Armrest gives drivers fingertip control of engine throttle, up/down shift, forward/reverse shuttle, hydraulic remote valves, and an automatic end-of-row function. Cab suspension was added for the first time. A new surround frame allows for a turning radius of just over 16 ft., the tightest in the industry. Hydraulic flow also is industry-leading at 75 gpm.

For more information, visit www.caseih.com/na.

 

 

New Holland T8 Series

The new T8 series from New Holland replaces the T8000 launched in 2007. It boasts the longest wheelbase in the industry to provide stability in the field or during high-speed transport, according to the company. A front 3-pt. hitch and PTO can now be integrated in the frame to power large hay cutters or other front-mounted tools and to hold ballast during tillage work.

All five models, ranging from 273 to 389 maximum engine hp (185 to 280 PTO hp), sport a new Interim Tier 4 Cursor 9-liter engine made by the company’s in-house engine manufacturer Fiat Powertrain Technologies. The engines use SCR technology to reduce emissions while increasing fuel economy. Engine Power Management, previously available only in the T6000 and T7000, now comes standard in the T8 to provide drivers with up to 50 hp of extra power during high-demand PTO, hydraulic or transport applications.

In the cab, the new Sidewinder II allows an operator to control up to five functions with one handle. An integrated touch-screen monitor, called the IntelliView IV, integrates tractor and implement controls as well as an autoguidance system.

For more information, visit www.newholland.com.

 

 

JCB Fastrac

Fast tractor maker JCB expanded its Fastrac 7000 series to include a 260-hp model. The Fastrac 7270 MFWD tractor, the largest of the 7000 series, is powered by a 6-cyl., 6.7-liter Cummins engine for extra power and torque, with a maximum power output of 270 hp.

All models in the 7000 series feature full all-round, self-leveling suspension that provides for a comfortable ride and good traction at road speeds up to 43 mph. Ride-height sensors trigger a response to pump up or soften the suspension whenever the load changes. An all-new chassis supports the suspension setup along with a bigger capacity rear axle and a 20,000-lb. rear and optional 7,700-lb. front implement linkage system.

The cab features a full-size seat for passengers alongside an air-suspension driver’s seat, a four-post structure, high-volume ventilation with automatic climate control, seat-mounted controls, and a touch-screen information and control monitor. Digital and analog displays provide updates of operating information.

For more information, call JCB at 912/447-2000, or visit www.jcbna.com.

 

 

John Deere 8R, 8RT Series

Deere revamped its new 8R and 8RT series, launched for the first time last year, with new, more powerful Interim Tier 4 engines and new high-tech features.

The 8R/8RT series consists of six wheel models and three track models that range from 235 engine hp to an industry-leading 360 engine hp — 10 to 15 hp more than last year’s models. All are equipped with new PowerTech PSX 9.0-liter engines with emissions-reduction technology called Exhaust Gas Recirculation (EGR) combined with a diesel particulate filter (DPF) that cleans itself during normal tractor operation without the need for additional fluid. Models equipped with an IVT come with a new feature called AutoMode that automatically selects the best transmission-operating mode to save fuel.

ActiveCommand Steering, a steer-by-wire system used in place of a conventional steering shaft, intervenes in the steering control circuit to improve driving safety and comfort. Other smart features include a new touch-screen GreenStar 3 (GS3) CommandCenter with integrated guidance and row shutoff, and JDLink and Service Advisor Remote, Deere’s telemetry products that allow vehicle tracking, remote diagnostics and wireless data transfer. The CommandCenter is ISOBUS compatible.

For more information, contact your local John Deere dealer or visit www.JohnDeere.com.

 

 

Versatile 305

Versatile extended its line of high-horsepower row-crop tractors this year to include a 305-engine-hp model. The Versatile 305 is powered by the same Cummins QSC 8.3-liter engine and 16-speed powershift transmission used in the Versatile 250 and 280 models but packs an additional 25 hp to handle bigger implements and power additional implement hydraulics.

The 305 has a new heavy-duty drawbar designed to handle the weight of large grain wagons and an optional dual-speed PTO to power a wider range of implements. The tractor can be ordered with front duals for increased traction, an optional 55-gpm HydraFlow Plus hydraulics package, and optional HID lighting for night work.

The same cab used in the Versatile 250 and 280 models has been carried over to the 305. It features an ergonomically designed console, straightforward dash, dual access doors, an air-ride seat, and tilt and telescoping steering. The V-PAS precision ag system can be ordered from the factory. The Versatile 305 comes with a 2-yr./2,000-hr. comprehensive warranty and a 3-yr./3,000-hr. powertrain warranty, which the company claims is the best in the industry.

For more information, visit www.versatile-ag.com