Not just high-horsepower tractors
Sprayers, combine harvesters, mowers, tedders, rakes and balers featured alongside robots and tractors at Fendt’s pre-Agritechnica product launch. David Williams was there. “Investment in Fendt is always profitable,” stated Agco CEO Martin Richenhagen during the event which was at Fendt’s Marktoberdorf headquarters. Tractor sales target for 2017 is 15,001 worldwide of which 32 per cent will remain in Germany. A research and development budget of 65.4M euros for the year demonstrates the company’s commitment to future technology and agriculture. Integration of the Challenger brand within the Fendt portfolio includes the full range of sprayers and its tracked tractors while the acquisition of Lely harvesting division has extended the range of balers and green harvest products available through Agco dealers. The Ideal combine, with identical specification from both Fendt and Massey Ferguson, complements Fendt’s Katana forage harvester range and will allow farmers and contractors to operate a full line up of Fendt branded machines.
Twin-track innovation Challenger’s twin-track crawlers have proved a major success on UK farms and it was widely expected that their introduction within the Fendt line-up would simply involve green paint and stickers. However, although the larger Challenger 800-series crawlers have remained almost the same as before, the smaller 700-series is all-new, from the track assemblies to the cabs and controls. Fendt displayed both series at the event. The 1100MT replaces 800-series Challengers and the 900 Vario MT replaces the previous 700-series.
Three models offer power outputs from 380–431hp from a 9.8-litre AgcoPower engine. Concentric cooling, similar to that of the 1000 Vario allows a small cooling pack to be used with a hydraulic-driven cooling fan pushing dense cold air through the radiators from the front. Benefits of VarioDrive CVT transmission with its two hydro motors include an ideal speed for any operation and the opportunity for the engine and transmission management system to reduce the revs to the minimum necessary for optimal fuel efficiency. “Powershift offers greater pulling efficiency and better economy but only for as long as travel speed remains constant and there is no interruption to work such as during headland turns,” explained sales engineer Hans Peter Settele “However, field work isn’t like that. Working conditions vary and speed of operations alter and as soon as power demand changes then CVT has the advantage. It’s easier for the operator to achieve optimum performance and it ensures the engine and gearbox always work at peak efficiency. Reduced workload for the operator allows concentration on the task, without needing to constantly shift gears.” Maximum 40kph travel speed is achieved at just 1,550rpm while at high speeds one of the two drive
Crawler CVT The 900 Vario MT is the first twintracked crawler with CVT transmission, sharing a similar unit to that used in Fendt 1000 Vario wheeled tractors.
Double bogeys ensure ground contact along the track length. Coil springs between the chassis and track assemblies provide up to 26cm suspension travel.
Biggest news concerned Fendt twin-track crawlers. With the Challenger brand incorporated within Fendt’s operation, previous large 800-series models remain similar to before, but with green paintwork. The smaller 700-series is replaced by totally new machines from the track bottom up; with Fendt CVT, suspended cabs and a new track carriage design.
motors automatically disconnects saving drag and reducing fuel consumption. A totally new chassis and track assembly has been designed for the 900 Vario MT. Fendt’s objective was to ensure maximum traction efficiency is available for the field along with comfort for the operator both on and off road.
Maximum track contact
The cab is almost identical to that of the 1000 Vario including a 10.4in
ConstantGrip uses double pendulum suspension within each track assembly to ensure the tracks are free to mould around undulations providing even ground pressure along their length and across the track width. At the base the rear bogey comprising two rollers is mounted on a pivoting carrier. The carrier in turn is mounted on the rear arm of a larger carrier with a single roller at the front. This ensures weight is equally distributed between the three rollers, regardless of undulations. There is also suspension at the front of each track assembly in the form of a large coil spring and shock absorber. Supporting the chassis, this allows up to 23cm
movement for each track, with up to 11 degrees swing angle, while a torque rod stabiliser ensures lateral stability. The cab is suspended as is the passenger seat and Fendt claims comfort and noise levels equivalent to a premium wheeled tractor.
The Fendt cab is based on that of the 1000 Vario wheeled tractors.
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