Fendt recently introduced its X Concept tractor at its headquarters in Marktoberdorf, Germany. The company has been working on the project in collaboration with various universities and implement manufacturers since 2001 to develop electrically powered implements for agricultural operations. Built on a Fendt 722 Vario platform, the tractor (pictured above) includes a high-voltage interface in addition to the usual hydraulic connections and PTO.
The tractor and implement are connected via the tried-and-tested ISOBUS system. Up to 130kW is transmitted to the implement by a 700V DC power supply. At the same time, electrical power is provided for the tractor’s fan drive and cooling pumps. The Fendt 722 Vario has an AGCO Power four-cylinder engine rated at 147kW, with an integrated high-performance alternator.
The engine is compact, so there is plenty of space available for electrical components such as the alternator, wiring and heat exchanger. The alternator is placed between the engine and transmission. The X Concept tractor is still only a prototype, but Fendt is actively working with various implement manufacturers, including Amazone, Fella, Fliegl, Grimme, Krone, Lemken and STW, to explore how the power required by various implements can be transmitted more efficiently by electrical connections.
It is estimated that it could take another six or seven years before Fendt has a production model capable of supplying electric power to drive implements, but the company’s engineers are optimistic about the real benefits for farmers.