Sitting in on a global virtual event is something new for anyone, but Friday, July 24, Massey Ferguson used computer technology to connect with a wide group as part of its launch of the new MF 8S tractor series.
Thierry Lhotte, vice president and managing director for Massey Ferguson in Europe and the Middle East, hosted the event which he says included 25,000 farmers and contractors, 900 journalists and more than 65,000 people attending from 170 countries. The new 8S was teased at Agritechnica in the fall of 2019 in an all-white version that honored the 50th anniversary of the landing on the moon.
The launch today was a bit more earth bound, but farmers do have access to a brand-new tractor series with a larger, quieter cab, enhanced operator station, more power and improved fuel efficiency. During the launch, Lhotte and his colleague, Francesco Murro, director of marketing for Europe and the Middle East, offered insight on the launch.
Focus during a post-launch media briefing was on the fact that the company worked closely with farmers and dealers on design, incorporating a range of input into the development process. The result is a $200 million investment involving 1 million development hours, 200,000 validation hours and "170 engineers fully dedicated and obsessed by quality," Murro says.
The new line will launch in North American in the second quarter of 2021.
There are four models and Massey Ferguson is keeping the designations simple with 8S being the series and the engine horsepower in the number. 8S.205, 8S.225, 8S.245 and 8S.265 are the four models. The engine is an Agco Power 7.4 liter, 6-cylinder with some interesting performance stats.
"All Massey Ferguson 8S tractors meet Stage 5 requirements," Murro explains. "The new engine provides maximum horsepower and torque at lower rpm and provides 10% lower fuel consumption." He notes that you'll hit max torque at 1000 rpm and it remains constant through 1,500 rpm.
On a global scale, the tractor series will have three transmission choices, but that depends on your market. In North America, the first choice will be the new Dyna E-Power dual-clutch stepless transmission. Later in 2021, the company will launch the Dyna-VT, a new CVT. The third transmission choice for some markets is the 28-speed Dyna 7.
Murro adds that on a global basis the company will have "the best offering of transmissions to the global market."
The tractors will also be "connected" machines. Each tractor gets a three-year subscription to MF Connect as standard. This system allows farmers access to key machine information. AgriRouter will be available in some markets for these machines, providing farmers the opportunity to receive prescription maps from trusted advisers, and it provides automatic data transfer. The final connected tech is NEXT machine management, which will be a new system.
In the cab
The cab got a significant makeover, with optional seat choices, a multifunction joystick controller and a new Datatronic 5 display. And the tractors get an enhanced column monitor for quick access to key information during operation. The seat can pivot 45-degrees for better rear view when needed.
In addition, the new cab is quiet, topping out at 68 dB, which is quieter than your new pickup on the interstate. And Trelleborg, maker of the TM1000 line of tires, launched a new tire size for this machine too with the 650/75R42 rear tire.
Massey Ferguson is making a statement with this machine, pointing out its straightforward design. Management is aiming to boost market share in all regions, which is a tall order in a competitive market. Check out the tractor and some key features at mf8s.masseyferguson.com/mf8s.html.