19 October 2001

Its no sweat for the driver

Massey Fergusons new

eight-model 4300 Series

tractors were introduced at

the beginning of the month.

Andy Collings climbed

aboard the range-topping

4370 for a drive

DRIVING the MF4370 – the model which tops the companys recently launched 4300 series tractors – is a totally unremarkable experience.

That is not to be derogatory but proof that Massey Ferguson has created an operating environment which makes small demand on the driver.

For it is the cab that the most notable changes have been made when the new 4300 series is compared with the similarly powered 4200 series.

It is worth noting at this stage the 4200 series will continue to be sold in countries outside the EU where engine emission standards are not so stringent. And on this basis, cynics could ask whether Massey Ferguson would have introduced the 4300 if legislation had not dictated a need for an EU emissions compliant engine.

But back to the cab. All key controls are now neatly sited on a console to the right of the operator – but not to the extent that access through the cabs right-hand door is unduly restricted.

First to note is the smaller gear stick, which on the 4370 is significantly smaller and less intrusive than that which has gone before.

This 4370 offers four main gears combined with a high, medium and low ranges plus two-speed PowerShift.

Selecting the main gears is straightforward, but finding the range changes calls for physical agility – the gear stick needs to be pushed out to the right before moving it forwards or backwards to make the selection. Essential, it would seem, is a dashboard display which denotes which range has been engaged.

Clutchless directional control is achieved simply by pushing the steering column mounted shuttle lever forward or backwards – a comfort control can be set to reduce or increase the rapidity or abruptness of directional changes.

Back to the main console to discover a repositioned diff lock and four-wheel drive engagement rocker switches and user friendly angled spool valve levers.

Also in this location is the Electronic Linkage Control (ELC), which employs rocker switches for lift and lower, draft and positioning mixing, rate of drop, maximum height set and ATC – Automatic Transport Control – a system which prevents violent shock loading to the linkages when transporting heavy mounted instruments.

A key feature of the 4370 is an ability to combine the output from its spool valve supply pump and linkage pump to increase work speed when operating, say, a loader.

With four furrows behind it, working in light soil, the 4370 had little trouble, its engine providing plenty of grunt power – the thing manufacturers call torque.

It is not hard to imagine the 4370 being used effectively in numerous agricultural jobs from heavy cultivation to rowcrop work.

Externally the most noticeable change is the repositioning of the exhaust stack to the side of the cab – a move which improves operator visibility and provides overall cleaner and aesthetically pleasing lines for the tractor.

Conclusion

For the smaller arable farmer the 4370 should provide a useful, and above all, comfortable workhorse. &#42

The 4370 pulls four furrows in light soil with ease.

Cab layout: Neater and more user friendly, says Massey Ferguson.