Written by Jim Breen
Kubota Corporation has entered into an agreement with Buhler Industries (a manufacturer that trades under the Versatile and Farm King brands) to “produce a new tractor platform”.
Under the terms of this “OEM [original equipment manufacturer] long-term agreement”, Buhler Industries will manufacture these tractors at its factory in Winnipeg, Manitoba (Canada).
The tractors, in turn, will become the largest offered by Kubota. At present, Kubota’s most powerful tractor is its (175hp) M7172 (pictured below).
Speculation is rife, though not yet confirmed, that the agreement involves Versatile’s recently-unveiled Nemesis range (one of which is pictured below).
The launch of these tractors, at a special event in Arizona (US) last month, was covered by AgriLand. Rated at 175-210hp, these machines are home to 6.7L Cummins engines and ZF transmissions.
“This agreement is exciting for both companies,” explained Grant Adolph, chief operating officer of Buhler Industries.
The Versatile brand has a global reputation in agriculture for building high-horsepower tractors that are reliable and well-built. As Kubota Corporation expands its presence in the farm machinery industry, these brand qualities are in line with its core values.
“The result of this agreement is an increase in production at the factory in Winnipeg, which will bring additional stability to the supply chain and employees.”
‘5 years of development’
He continued: “Development of this new tractor platform began nearly five years ago and production will begin immediately.”
The tractors that are central to this agreement are in (what Buhler Industries refers to as) the “mid-range, front-wheel-assist segment”.
Bear in mind that, in North America (the home of Buhler Industries), a ‘front-wheel-assist tractor’ or ‘MFWD (mechanical front-wheel-drive) tractor’ typically refers to a machine with smaller, powered front wheels (what we would typically refer to as a 4WD tractor here in Ireland and the UK).
A ‘4WD tractor’, in North America, typically refers to a big, equal-sized wheel machine (usually an articulated-chassis tractor).
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