Josh and Sarah Gourley don’t believe in standing still.
The range includes an upgraded continuously variable transmission (CVT) and for the first time, the ActiveDrive 8 transmission featuring double-clutch technology.
The two models, AD8 and CVT, offer new styling, revised wheelbase and other enhancements. They join the 16x16 semi-powershift transmission already on offer.
A new design aligns the Maxxum with the Optum CVT, featuring an updated roofline and LED work lights in the front grill. Comfort has been improved with a choice of Deluxe seats, enhanced cab features and a single-piece front screen, while for increased efficiency, the Maxxum series has improved brake to clutch functionality and options for ISOBUS II and ISOBUS III.
It won 2019 Tractor of the Year Award, and in so doing, achieved the best rating ever for fuel efficiency by a four-cylinder model. The range also offers a 6-cylinder engine for Maxxum 150 CVT and Multicontroller for applications, where power counts.
The ActiveDrive 8 transmission has three ranges and a total of 24 speeds in both forward and reverse. The double-clutch technology results in less torque interruption, while pedal clutching is not necessary for range changes, making this transmission ideal for power-hungry tasks where momentum is important.
The series also includes options for adaptive steering, for faster turns with fewer steering movements, and Headland Management Control II (HMC II) technology. HMC II automates headland turns with the benefits of reduced driver fatigue and improved productivity. AFS AccuGuide and new AFS AccuTurn are also available.
Farm manager Sam LeCren has been putting his new Maxxum ActiveDrive 8 through its paces for a month at Karapiro in South Waikato, where he manages an Angus bull farm and another property for the Auckland-based Plaw family.
The home farm comprises three original farms that run along 3km of the Karapiro lakefront, plus a further lease block that runs from the lake to the fence at the Maungatautari Ecological Reserve.
As well as the traditional farming operation the area also includes a fully developed equestrian events centre, a horse breeding operation, vineyards and a market garden. Forty per cent of the 320ha total is farmed, with the remainder set aside as parkland and the equestrian areas.
“Part of the reason for buying this tractor was that we’d taken over the new lease,” says LeCren. “We effectively tripled our area, so I needed another tractor. I like the simplicity of a CVT, but I also like having the driver control. This AD8 is almost like a cross-between the two.
“You can set it in automatic and away it goes. You don’t feel the gear changes like in a conventional powershift-transmission, as it’s already in the next gear that you want to change into.”