February 17, 2014
Case IH’s Steiger Rowtrac was unveiled for the first time in Australia in Moree, northern New South Wales, providing farmers with the opportunity to view one of the highest horsepower, tracked row-crop tractors on the market.
“Case IH extends its track technology leadership with the new Steiger Rowtrac, proving again that four tracks are superior to two in row-crop applications,” says Pete McCann, Case IH Business Manager.
“Customers told us they wanted a Steiger Quadtrac with more flexibility for more jobs, while maintaining power, performance and innovation. The Case IH four-track, positive-drive system is the only factory-integrated drive system of its kind in the world. It puts more power to the ground, improves traction and simplifies transport, allowing users to cover more ground in less time, even when field conditions are less-than-optimum.”
Four tracks transfer more power to the ground than two, and the Steiger Rowtrac will provide more options and greater flexibility for customers. With equal-sized, independent, oscillating drives on all four corners, farmers can get in to the paddock sooner, especially in adverse field conditions. The wheelbase has been extended from 3.9 to just over four metres, so each track has more ground contact, resulting in better transfer of power to the ground. In addition, the unique design delivers less ground pressure, better traction and the most comfortable ride in the industry.
“Better traction helps reduce compaction by minimising slippage on the soil surface,” says McCann. “Compared to two-track systems, operators will see no ridging or berming in turns. In addition, each track drive oscillates up and down up to 10 degrees to maintain consistent ground contact no matter what the conditions.”
“Not only will farmers be able to plant seed sooner, but the seed will have a better environment in which to germinate and develop strong root systems that extend down into the soil area, with better access to nutrients. Less in-row compaction translates to earlier emergence of crops and the opportunity for increased yields.”
The Steiger Rowtrac has a narrower track width, with adjustable row spacing and the capacity to pull large implements. It has all the advantages of Quadtrac technology for both primary and secondary tillage and field applications, including planting, side-dressing, fertilising and specialty applications.
Walgett farmer, Peter Ricardo, is the proud owner of Australia’s first Steiger Rowtrac 450 on display in Moree, having purchased the tractor earlier this year. He also visited the state-of-the art Steiger production factory in Fargo, North Dakota, and was impressed by Case IH’s investment in industry leading technologies. The Ricardo family has had Steigers for as long as Peter can remember, however the purchase of the Steiger Rowtrac is as much about productivity as brand loyalty.
“The Steiger Rowtrac will change a lot for us. We’ll go from sowing 12 metres to 24 metres and stay on our tram lines, so we’ll double our productivity,” says Ricardo.
The Steiger Rowtrac gives operators more adaptability and versatility for different cropping systems, with a choice of two metre, 2.2m and three metre centre to centre axle width options, and a choice of 16″, 18″ and 24″ track widths to suit many types of operations. Plus the architecture is designed with a small overall size and packaging in mind for excellent visibility and a tight turning radius, making the Rowtrac highly manoeuvrable in the field.
The undercarriage features a new advanced suspension system. Rubber “donuts” act like shock absorbers and keep the suspension from shifting from side to side, which helps the tractor remain accurate on the row.
“Steiger tractors are famous around the world for superior power and performance, no matter what the conditions,” notes McCann. “The new Rowtrac 350, 400 and 450 tractors continue that heritage with a convenient size and configuration to match every farm operation’s high-horsepower needs.
“Thanks to a best-in-class engine, every Steiger Rowtrac delivers power and responsiveness, even in the most demanding applications,” he continues. “Plus, oil-change intervals have been lengthened to 600 hours. This gives operators powerful, smart, simple technology to get more done with fewer inputs.”
Like other Steiger models, the Rowtrac machines have Power Boost to provide extra power when needed with hydraulics, PTO, during transport and in other challenging conditions. New features provide even more flexibility: the 428 litres-per-minute parallel flow hydraulic system for use with a three-point-hitch and PTO offers increased efficiency and adaptability for more planting and chaser bin applications.
The Steiger Rowtrac also features factory-installed Advanced Farming Systems (AFS) AccuGuideTM auto-guidance to increase efficiency and accuracy in terms of field applications.
“Factory-installed AFS AccuGuide is available for fully automated guidance in both forward and reverse,” McCann explains. “This is the first integrated system to allow operators to automatically align with the next guidance line while backing up.”
The Steiger Rowtrac also boasts:
The largest, most comfortable cab in the industry on a row-crop chassis, with full suspension, and industry-leading 40-degree right hand seat for minimal neck strain and fatigue
The MultiControl Armrest, keeping nearly all operation controls within easy reach
Maximum Uptime thanks to easy maintenance, including a narrow undercarriage; all engine, transmission and hydraulic/axle fluids serviced from ground level; and fluid site gauges are at ground level
Small overall size ensuring ease of road transport
“Case IH customers can now choose four tracks or wheels on all Steiger models, from 350 to 600 horsepower. It’s all in an effort to help our customers embrace the challenges and take advantage of the opportunities in agriculture – today and in the future,” says McCann.
More Steiger Rowtrac tractors will be available in other parts of the country before the end of the year and dealers are now taking orders for the 2014 season.