JCB has upped the ante in its drive for increased penetration into major broadacre farming applications in Australia with the launch of a new flagship Fastrac tractor offering increased power, torque and fuel efficiency as well as a host of other new features and improvements.
David Moselen, National Fastrac Product Manager with Australian distributor, JCB Construction Equipment Australia, said the new model JCB 8310 Fastrac would continue to be the ideal machine for spraying, spreading, hauling and other utility applications, however its extra grunt, efficiency and new features would increase its suitability for heavier draught operations, including implement work on larger farms.
At the top of the list of new features is a new Sisu Stage IIIB/Tier 4i, 8.4-litre engine boosting power to 228 kilowatts (306 horsepower) and torque by 15 per cent to 1310Nm, whilst delivering up to 10pc fuel savings.
JCB announced its agreement with AGCO Sisu Power to supply engines for the JCB Fastrac range late last year.
The Sisu engines feature high efficiency combustion with after-treatment limited to Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR), avoiding the need for particulate filters.
“They are a much more efficient engine and run a lot cooler than those using an Exhaust Gas Recirculation (EGR) system, which other brands use,’’ Mr Moselen said.
He said in addition to the fuel consumption benefits, the engines also were significantly quieter, providing reduced in-cab noise levels. There is a 5dBA reduction to 68.7 dBA.
A heavier duty Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT) incorporates a number of enhancements for smoother gear changes as well as improved functionality. Road cruise control at speeds between 20 kilometres per hour and 70km/hr and enhanced in-field cruise controls also reduces operator effort.
Mr Moselen said the JCB 8310 Fastrac comes GPS guidance ready to help further increase efficiency by eliminating any overlap, thereby reducing the waste of fuel, time, seed, fertiliser and chemical.
He said the new patented option was developed in conjunction with Trimble and offers up to 2-centimetre RTK guidance.
The mechanical link steering system also has been retained.
New “high flow’’ load sensing auxiliary hydraulic services with the JCB 8310 Fastrac are now standard with flow and time in both directions and a rear camera option improves rear and towing hitch visibility.
JCB’s genuine “one touch’’ headland management system now has additional functionality, including distance-based delay, GPS activation, engine speed and travel speed, while additional wheel equipment options also are offered to cater for the new Fastrac’s increased power.
Mr Moselen said another important improvement was a cabin pressuriser for the air-conditioning to prevent air leakage and a larger filter and air vents.
Meanwhile, the new model of course retains the unique JCB Fastrac benefits of full suspension, a chassis designed for strength and load carrying ability, ultimate braking and safety, high road speeds, equal weight distribution and excellent cab comfort.
The suspension geometry has been tweaked to ensure an even more responsive feel and greater control at speed.
A number of JCB dealers across Australia enjoyed a first-hand look over the new JCB 8310 Fastrac during a tour of the manufacturer’s facilities and products at Staffordshire in the UK.
Will Michell, of JCB dealer Michell Machinery at Dubbo in New South Wales, said the well-built Sisu engine was the impressive feature of the new flagship JCB Fastrac.
“It’s high torque levels and fuel efficiency is a major bonus, especially with running costs being such a big issue these days,’’ Mr Michell said.
“We couldn’t believe how quiet and how good it runs. It holds its horsepower and torque well.’’
He expected the JCB 8310 Fastrac would continue to be used mainly for spraying and chaser bin work through the area, although said its higher horsepower would push it into more operations as an “all-round tractor’’.
Mr Michell said other key features included the fact it was auto-steer guidance ready and had additional functions on the touch screen in the cab and an improved air-conditioning system.