31 July 1998

All-purpose role suits Case

In its new Doncaster-built

MXC series, Case IH now

has Maxxum models in the

all-purpose 80-100hp sector

of the market. Ian Marshall

took the top-of-the-range

MX100C into the field

AS all plant breeders will know, hybrid vigour can be the result of cross breeding different varieties of the same species. The same is true, it seems, when it comes to tractor production.

For this is what Case IH has done to produce its MX100C – married a new turbo-charged 102hp engine to the 40kph, 16/12 full powershift shuttle reverser transmission used in the companys 110-135hp Maxxums.

Use of a 4-cylinder engine enables it all to be packed into a 4.3m (14.4ft) wheel base, measured from the link ends to the front weights.

The result is a manoeuvrable, all-purpose tractor which appears to be equally at ease in the field on draught or pto operations, or in the yard on front end loader work.

The MX100C looks squat and powerful, but is it user-friendly?

As on any modern tractor, operator comfort is high on the list. Case boasts one of the best cabs on the market – step through the wide opening doors of the flat floor cab and one starts to agree. The operator is surrounded by space, an impression heightened by the area of glass, which, combined with the exhaust stack being hidden behind the right-hand pillar, gives excellent all-round visibility.

All the controls are grouped on a console on the right hand side and laid out so those relevant to the operation come easily to hand.

With the shuttle reverser column in neutral, turn the key and the engine – a joint Perkins/Case development designed to meet future emission regulations – comes to life, quietly. Sound level in the cab is 72dB (A) and engine noise is reassuringly there, but not intrusive.

Gear selection is on a single main lever. The four ranges are laid out in an H-pattern and are engaged using the clutch. Going up and down through the four-speed powershift is by a thumb switch on the side of the gear lever knob, worked in conjunction with a finger operated soft shift selector button on the front of the unit.

Our tractor was hitched to a Lemken four furrow reversible – the 5871kg (12,916lbs) capacity hydraulics had no trouble lifting the plough, so it should have no difficulty handling other machinery – and six miles of road to and from the test site was more than enough time to get used to the powershift.

Just flick the switch and changes are made with a considerable jerk. Press the soft selector button at the same time then gently let it go and the transition is stepless. The speed at which the button is released also controls the rate at which the power is fed back in.

In the field, ploughing with the MX100C was a pleasure. Swivel the seat to the right and you have a comfortable working position with a good view both forward and of the implement, while the hydraulic control levers and electronic hitch control dials are at your right hand.

And there is plenty of power and torque. Second gear/second powershift at 1800rpm comfortably handled ploughing at 25cm (10in) in virgin heavy clay.

The MX100C is up against the likes of New Hollands TS models, John Deeres 10 series and Massey Fergusons 6100 range. Deutzs Agrotrons and Valtras Mezzos also provide competition. But with a list price of £41,000 – complete with air conditioning – the MX100C competes on price and appears more than capable of living up to expectations. &#42

CASE IH MX100C DATA

&#8226 Engine 4 litre, 4-cyl turbocharged.

&#8226 Max power 102hp at 2200rpm.

&#8226 Max torque 403Nm at 1400rpm.

&#8226 Transmission Four-speed full powershift/power shuttle, 40kph.

&#8226 Max lift capacity 5871kg (12,916lbs). 3720kg (8184lb) through full range at 61cm.

&#8226 Pump output 109 litres/min.

&#8226 Draught control Lower link electronic sensing.

&#8226 Pto 540/1000 with electronic engagement and modulation.

&#8226 Overall dimensions on standard 16.9R38 rear/ 13.6R28 front tyres Length 4.3m (14.4ft); width 2.1m (7.1ft).

&#8226 Height to top of cab 2.8m (9.3ft).

&#8226 Minimum turning radius on standard tyres 4.3m (14.3ft).

&#8226 Price: £41,000 c/w air conditioning.