Zetors UR1s step forward
By Andy Collings
WESTERN on the outside but still a hint of east on the inside.
While Czech Republic tractor maker Zetor has made great strides in matching design, style and performance to western demands, its new UR1 Super range will not be entirely foreign territory for those familiar with earlier designs.
Even so, when it comes to value for money, Zetor still scores well. Where else, for example, is it possible to buy an 84hp, four-wheel drive tractor for just over £21,000?
Seven models make up the range: The 2WD and 4WD 4321 and 4341 are rated at 60hp, the similarly tractioned 5321 and 5341 at 70hp and the 7321 and 7341 at 84hp. Between the 70hp and 84hp models is the 75hp 6341 Economy, a no frills unit with a price under £14,000, which should appeal to livestock farmers.
Power units throughout comprise Zetors 4-cyl engines – the more powerful models benefiting from a turbocharger. Considered by the company to offer significant improvements on those that have gone before, the engines now have a longer piston stroke to improve torque, and a range of modifications designed to increase efficiency and extend working life.
The transmission, as Zetor concedes, still remains at odds with most other firms offerings. A two-range box with five forwards and one reverse in each, the result is a 10×2 unit; an optional shuttle box raises the stakes to provide a 10×10 unit. And for those who enjoy life at slightly more than a jog, a 40kph version is fitted as standard on 84hp models and offered as an option on other 4WD models.
Braking, increasingly important for modern tractors, has undergone something of a revolution with the new models fitted with oil immersed disc brakes; 4WD versions also have front-wheel hub brakes. Zetor claims the new design requires next to no maintenance and reduces fade on long braking runs.
When it comes to hydraulic performance the UR1 Super range can hold its head up with some pride. Output from the pump is 50 litres/min and lift capacity on the rear linkage rated at 4000kg. Three external outlets are standard and a separate pump is employed for the power steering system.
In terms of external build, Zetor has achieved its aim of providing a stylish looking workhorse. A rounded, forward sloping bonnet and removable side panels – all fibreglass – combine with a modern looking cab to present a machine few could find aesthetically unpleasing.
As for the cab itself, a flat floor, uncomplicated dashboard and good ventilation create a reasonable working environment. But there may be those who find the long, apparently gateless gear stick something of a challenge to master in the short term, and the foot throttle rather less than convincing in its desire to remain an integral part of the tractor.
Even so, overall, one is led to believe that Zetor, in the UR1 Super, has produced a tractor range which could take the company into the next century. Priced competitively, it should find favour with more than a few sectors of the industry. And if, as planned for early next year, a 6-cyl, 120hp version comes on stream, sales could blossom accordingly.
• Zetor tractors are made at Bruno in the Czech Republic. Annual production is reported to be about 20,000 units with 95% being exported to 70 countries. *
Zetors 5341 is one of seven models in the UR1 Super range. See Power Farmings Silsoe test on p84. Left: A flat-floor cab with an uncomplicated dashboard is a feature of the range.
Zetor UR1 Super range
Model Specification Price £
4321 2wd 60hp 14,490
4341 4wd 60hp 17,120
5321 2wd 70hp 15,800
5341 4wd 70hp 18,790
6341 Econ 4wd 75hp 13,990
7321 2wd 84hp 17,340
7341 4wd 84hp 21,110