Grain SA reports that a record 75 116 visitors attended this year’s Nampo Harvest Day, while exhibitors totalled 685 – the most ever. Here are the tractors that caught our eye:
Star of the show
The first John Deere 9570RX ‘4-Track’ articulated tracked tractor in South Africa was snapped up at the start of the show. And this, it transpired, was no one-off deal: the next four days saw 11 more orders placed for the giant tractor. The new 425kW 9570RX (seen here) is one of four models rated from 352kW to 465kW.
Compact, but efficient
Smith Power Equipment, South African distributors for Kubota, recently introduced the L45 tractor-loader-backhoe (TLB), featuring the HST Plus hydrostatic transmission. With 34kW available from the Kubota diesel engine, this unit is ideal for the many jobs around the farm that can be found for a compact but efficient TLB.
The backhoe has a 3m digging depth and the optional quick coupler makes changing buckets exceptionally easy. Loader lifting capacity is 1 000kg to a height of 2,8m, and breakout force is 1 600kg.
The New Holland SmartTrax system combines the overall versatility of a wheeled tractor with the high traction and flotation of rubber tracks. SmartTrax T8 tractors have purpose-built, high-torque axles that match the larger diameter front wheels with the rear tracks.
This enables full power delivery between the front wheels and rear tracks for optimal performance. A key feature of SmartTrax is its ability to turn tightly and cleanly at the headland. The lower footprint pressure allows earlier access to the land when wet and can extend field operation later into the season due to the reduced risk of compaction. The T8-435 is seen here.
Big and wide
Take a Valtra T193 Hitech tractor with front linkage and PTO and add a Pöttinger Novacat X8 front and rear combination mower and roller conditioner. The result is a highly effective pairing that can cut up to 8,3m wide, yet has a transport width of only 3m.
Two powerful springs on each mower unit ensure a ‘floating cut’ and help to spread the weight of the machine over the width of the cutter bar. At the same time, the ground pressure can easily be adjusted without tools. The 140kW Valtra T193 (shown here) is available with the TwinTrac reverse-drive option, allowing it to operate in both directions.
This is particularly useful when coupled to the ‘reverse drive’ Pöttinger mower combination. Here, all three mower components are hitched to the rear linkage, so that they are in front of the driver, who can see the full width of the mowing operation.
The big YTO
The new YTO 1504 powershift tractor was launched at Nampo. VB Agri has completed two years of field tests with the tractor in the Western Cape and Free State, where it impressed farmers with its performance, fuel consumption and operator-friendly cab.
The tractor is equipped with a new-generation YTO 112,5kW engine. The transmission is made by YTO France, as is the three-point linkage. The front axle is from Carraro, Italy.
For specialist operations
The new Farmall JXM 90 is currently being tested under local conditions. It is powered by an IVECO S8000 four-cylinder 3908cc turbocharged and after-cooled engine rated at 65,7kW at 2 300rpm, with 340Nm torque at 1 400rpm.
Various transmissions are available, including a 12×12/8×8 synchro with creeper options, a 12×12/20×20 mechanical transmission and a 12×12/20×20 power shuttle.
For specialist applications such as vegetable planting or harvesting, the optional creeper gears provide an additional eight forward speeds engaged with a separate lever. The optional hydraulic power shuttle is particularly useful in loader operations.
Joe Spencer is the mechanisation editor of Farmer’s Weekly.