John Deere has unveiled its long-awaited 8030 series tractors.

DEERE 8530The machines – which will not be officially launched until the Agritechnica event later this year – will replace the current 8020 series.

As with the 8020 series, there will be five wheeled models, but only three tracked versions.

In appearance the new 8030 series machines are pretty similar to the units they replace. Extra cab roof lights and some aesthetic alterations around the bonnet are the most noticeable changes.

It is under the bonnet where the most significant technological changes are found. The 8030 series units are to be powered by new tier three-compliant John Deere 9.0 litre PowerTech engines.

Tier three effectively means a 40% reduction in engine emissions over the old tier two standard.

To achieve tier three requirements Deere has made significant changes to the tractors’ cooling package with the introduction of EGR (Exhaust Gas Recirculation) technology.

EGR technology is where the exhaust manifold and engine air intake are connected via a valve. Up to 10% of exhaust gas is passed through the valve, cooled and re-circulated into the combustion cycle, reducing the amount of nitrous oxide in the final exhaust gases.

Deere says that the new engines run about 10C cooler that the old tier two PowerTech engines. Much of this is due to EGR, but the temperature difference is mostly attributed to a revised cooling package.

The radiator on the tier three engines is double the size of that on the older tier two engines, while the air flow is now directed away from the engine through vents on the top and sides of the bonnet.

Deere says the engine fan features a variable drive that allows stepless variation of the fan speed according to the cooling requirements irrespective of engine rpm.

A new turbo system – using technology from the automotive industry – is intended to increase torque at low engine speeds.

The turbo – dubbed variable geometry – uses adjustable airflow vanes to allow optimum air intake depending on engine rpm, generating more torque at lower engine speeds and providing a quicker response to loads, says Deere.

Transmission options are either Deere’s AutoPowr IVT (infinitely variable transmission) or a 16 forward, five reverse APS (automatic power-shift) transmission.

The tracked units are only available with the APS transmission, while the 8530 is fitted with the AutoPowr box as standard. The remaining wheeled units are available with either transmission.

Top speed for both transmission options is 42kmh, although Deere says a 50kmh AutoPowr box will be available in 2006.

fwmachinery@rbi.co.uk