Latest reviews and tests

4X4S

On test: Toyota's super-frugal Rav4 plug-in hybrid

Toyota reckons its latest Rav4 plug-in hybrid can return an impressively frugal 282mpg. James Andrews finds out if it delivers in the real world Comfortable, capable and practical they might…

SPRAYERS

First impressions: McConnel's bigger and heavier Agribuggy

At what point is a small, lightweight self-propelled sprayer no longer small or lightweight? The McConnel Agribuggy has defined this relatively niche segment since its inception in the early 1980s…

4X4S

On test: Ineos Automotive's debut 247hp Quartermaster pickup

Ineos has built what could be the toughest mainstream pickup on the market, but simple, solid engineering comes at a cost. With its snorting straight-six diesel, creamy eight-speed gearbox, and…

4X4S

On test: Bog-basic Isuzu D-Max Utility isn't cheap enough

If you’re the type of penny-pincher to wear hole-ridden pants, conjure two brews from a single teabag, and keep your house thermostat sub-double digits then, as new vehicles go, Isuzu’s…

401+HP

First impressions: Valtra's revamped 420hp S416 gets new cab

Valtra’s big S-series has finally been given some Finnish affection, having been left as little more than a masquerading Massey for nigh on two decades. As well as acquiring a…

4X4S

On test: Nissan X-Trail gets new practical hybrid powertrain

Worried that a fully electric car could leave them conked out miles from a charger, thousands of buyers have played it safe and bought a hybrid instead. A sensible move…

Tractors

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401+HP

First impressions: Valtra's revamped 420hp S416 gets new cab

Valtra’s big S-series has finally been given some Finnish affection, having been left as little more than a masquerading Massey for nigh on two decades. As well as acquiring a…

TRACTORS

Driver's view: Why Norfolk grower runs trio of Deutz 7250s

Deutz-Fahr tractors are now the go-to prime movers for Norfolk-based potato grower Ian Mason Farms, primarily because of their keen up-front costs and driver-friendly controls. The business runs four of…

201-300HP

Driver's view: Leics farm rates McCormick's 240hp X7.624

Shifting fewer than 100 tractors a year at the last count makes McCormick one of the lowest volume tractor brands selling in the UK. But what the Italian marque lacks…

TRACTORS

Driver’s view: McCormick X6.413 P6-Drive

Fitted with a 4.5-litre FPT engine and an in-house six-speed semi-powershift transmission, the X6.4 is McCormick’s premium offering in the four-cylinder sector. This means buyers have access to a host…

TRACTORS

Driver's view: Case IH Maxxum 125 ActiveDrive 4

A recent reordering of Case IH’s smaller tractor ranges has resulted in a slimming down of the popular Maxxum series to a trio of models. But with three transmission options…

TRACTORS

Driver's view: John Deere 6120M PowrQuad

John Deere rejuvenated its simpler M-series tractors four years ago, with the range restructured into short-, small-, mid- and large- chassis categories that contain a total of 10 models spanning…

TRACTORS

Driver's view: Deutz-Fahr 6125 C

As with most tractor launches nowadays, it was inescapable emissions limits that drove Deutz-Fahr to replace its 6120, 6130 and 6140 with very similar 6 C models in early 2022.…

101-200HP

Driver’s view: Claas Arion 450 CIS Quadrishift

Packing 130hp and 500Nm of torque, the Arion 450 is the third most powerful model in Claas’ compact four-cylinder tractor range, behind the 140hp 460 and 155hp 470. Since 2014,…

Telehandlers

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TELEHANDLERS

First impressions: Kubota's diddy debut KTH telehandler

Twelve years on from its multimillion-pound acquisition of Kverneland that yielded new mower, baler and fertiliser spreader ranges, Kubota has now nosed in on the world of materials handling –…

TELEHANDLERS

Dairy goes electric with Avant e6 pivot-steer telehandler

After 40 years of running Bobcat skidsteer loaders on his 60-cow organic dairy farm near St Davids, Wyn Evans opted for a completely different type of materials handler. Not only…

TELEHANDLERS

Lightweight JCB 403 proves a hit for Pembrokeshire farm

Harold, David and Berwyn Warlow run a brace of compact JCB 403 wheel loaders on their 300-cow dairy farm and beef unit near Narberth, Pembrokeshire. Duties for the pint-sized machines…

TELEHANDLERS

On test: Fendt broadens Cargo range with T740 telehandler

The world is littered with gizmos that no one ever asked for, yet somehow became integral to our lives. Lightbulbs, vaccines, airplanes and personal computers were all dismissed before they…

TELEHANDLERS

On test: Bobcat’s revamped TL43.80HF telehandler

While JCB may continue to occupy the long-coveted throne in the competitive telehandler market, Bobcat is becoming an increasingly viable challenger thanks to a drastic interior upgrade for its new…

TELEHANDLERS

On test: JCB's debut battery-electric Loadall - the 525-60E

JCB has boarded the battery-electric bandwagon, with the first production models of its 525-60E telehandler now whizzing around inner-city building sites, industrial warehouses and posh equine units. But while those…

TELEHANDLERS

On test: JCB's new TM420S pivot-steer telehandler

Launched a couple of years ago, JCB’s TM420 was the biggest pivot-steer telehandler the company had ever built, offering a 4t lift capacity and more than 5.4m vertical reach. But…

GRASSLAND AND MAIZE EQUIPMENT

Driver's view: Norfolk contractors' Claas Torion 1812 shovel

We get the lowdown on the Claas Torion 1812 loading shovel run by Norfolk contracting outfit Spring Farm Partnership. A pair of long-in-the-tooth loading shovels – a Volvo L110 and…

Tools, clothing and other equipment

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CLOTHING

On test: Reusable half-mask respirators – which is best?

Time to swap your disposable dust masks for a reusable respirator? Oliver Mark and James Andrews gear up and try out seven widely available options. Any job involving a dust…

MACHINERY MAINTENANCE

Test: Pto shaft guards rated for quality, price and servicing

We’re all taught from an early age about the dangers of living and working on farms, yet the accident statistics remain horrifying. Agriculture accounts for some 16% of all workplace…

TOOLS

On test: Five top-spec electric chainsaws compared

They might sound more like an electric carving knife than a serious piece of timber-felling equipment, but don’t be fooled… battery powered chainsaws mean business. In fact, such has been…

TOOLS

Makita v Milwaukee: Impact wrenches and combi drills tested

The latest generation of brushless combi drills and impact wrenches offer punchy power output in a compact package. Oliver Mark and James Andrews put high-spec 18V models from two of…

TOOLS

On test: Cold water pressure washers – which is best?

Having a decent, easily portable pressure washer about the farm is always handy but, increasingly, it seems that what you buy doesn't always measure up to expectations. We put five…

CLOTHING

12 reusable farm gloves on test: Which are best?

Whether it’s filling up with fuel, connecting a pto shaft or wrangling with hydraulic pipes, a decent set of gloves will make the job far more pleasant. We know there…

TOOLS

6 handy new tools for the farm

Several big companies have been busy launching new farm-friendly tools, including ZF with its clever do-it-yourself oil analysis kit, Karcher with a new-look pressure washer lance and Draper, which has…

WORKSHOP SKILLS

Video: On test – 20 workshop tools recommended by farmers

Off the back of the low-cost tool, gadget and knickknack review we carried out last year, scores of readers got in touch with nifty suggestions of their own. Oliver Mark…

4x4s, cars and pickups

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4X4S

On test: Toyota's super-frugal Rav4 plug-in hybrid

Toyota reckons its latest Rav4 plug-in hybrid can return an impressively frugal 282mpg. James Andrews finds out if it delivers in the real world Comfortable, capable and practical they might…

4X4S

On test: Ineos Automotive's debut 247hp Quartermaster pickup

Ineos has built what could be the toughest mainstream pickup on the market, but simple, solid engineering comes at a cost. With its snorting straight-six diesel, creamy eight-speed gearbox, and…

4X4S

On test: Bog-basic Isuzu D-Max Utility isn't cheap enough

If you’re the type of penny-pincher to wear hole-ridden pants, conjure two brews from a single teabag, and keep your house thermostat sub-double digits then, as new vehicles go, Isuzu’s…

4X4S

On test: Nissan X-Trail gets new practical hybrid powertrain

Worried that a fully electric car could leave them conked out miles from a charger, thousands of buyers have played it safe and bought a hybrid instead. A sensible move…

4X4S

On test: Base-spec and bestselling Ford Rangers face off

Almost £20,000 separates the two Ranger pickups featured in this week’s Country Car, in what looks a rank mismatch. It’s the meat-and-potatoes XL, yours for a smidge over £28k, versus…

4X4S

On test: Daihatsu's lightweight, high-spec Hijet 4x4

The success of modified Suzuki Jimnys at providing an alternative to costly UTVs has paved the way for another quirky method of off-road transport – compact Japanese pickups. Slotting into…

4X4S

On test: Ineos's £79,000 Grenadier 4x4

While small numbers of Ineos’ long-awaited Grenadier have been trickling out across the country, they’re still something of a rarity. Having tackled the inevitable rash of teething troubles that you’d…

4X4S

First impressions: Go-anywhere £8k Suzuki Quadtruck

What’s smaller than a pickup, more reliable than a UTV, and more comfortable than a quad bike? It’s a Suzuki Quadtruck, of course – the lovechild of farming’s three most…

ATVs and UTVs

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ATVS AND UTVS

On test: Battery-powered Polaris Ranger XP Kinetic

The UTV might have taken the farming world by storm, but these compact off-roaders have several compromises to counter their convenience. Downers for ubiquitous diesels are sluggish acceleration and a…

ATVS AND UTVS

On test: Can-Am Outlander Pro HD7 packs gutsy 50hp engine

Built to satisfy the tastes of demanding North American buyers, Can-Am ATVs have always been powerful, comfortable and loaded with optional extras. But the payoff compared with tough-as-old-boots Japanese bikes…

ATVS AND UTVS

Can-Am Traxter 6x6 UTV is clumsy but offers plenty of grip

Four-wheel drive has most of the bases covered when it comes to off-road driving, but there are a few renegades out there that think six will do the job better.…

ATVS AND UTVS

On test: CF Moto challenges the big brands with new ATV line

While the West has been casually writing off Chinese products as cheap tat, its manufacturers have been beavering away to make them better… a lot better. The tsunami of throwaway…

ATVS AND UTVS

First impressions: Segway Fugleman UT10X Deluxe UTV

Farmers looking for a cheap runaround now have the option of the Fugleman, a comparatively low-cost but surprisingly pokey UTV from Segway. The Chinese maker is a relative newcomer to…

ATVS AND UTVS

On test: John Deere Gator XUV 865R UTV

When John Deere launched its 865 Gator at the start of 2020, it looked as though the American giant had intentionally blurred the lines between conventional UTVs and base-spec pickups.…

ATVS AND UTVS

On test: Corvus Terrain DX4 UTV

Corvus is the new kid on the block, launching its first utility vehicle in 2018 and dispatching it to the UK in 2019 via importer Boss ORV. The Spanish brand…

ATVS AND UTVS

On test: Polaris Ranger Diesel

Polaris hails from the US, where utility vehicles can be found thundering around the wilderness on prolonged hunting excursions. As a result, the Ranger can be furnished with all manner…

Arable

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DRILLING

How new tech turns standard drill into variable-rate system

Thanks to a new drill-conversion kit, arable farmers hoping to adopt an adjustable-rate system can now simply and affordably convert any standard drill into variable-rate capacity. Developed by crop production…

BALERS AND WRAPPERS

Big baler innovations could help farmers cut costs

The latest batch of big square balers are packing even more straw into a heavier bale, which not only drives down the cost of baling, fewer bales also cuts down…

CEREAL DRILLS

New drill options for seed-bed fertiliser

New options for growers wanting to apply dry fertiliser when sowing spring cereal crops take different approaches to delivering the material, either down the same spout as the seed or…

PLOUGHS

A round-up of new ploughs at Cereals 2016

There was plenty of evidence at Cereals 2016 that ploughs still have a significant role to play, judging by the new and improved models that manufacturers had on display. Whether…

ARABLE

New tractor tyre technology offers 18% more traction

The tyre designer’s job, it seems, is never done. As tractors continue to gain power and weight to meet farmer demand for greater performance, new tyre designs are needed to…

14 useful machinery, tractor and arable apps for 2016

With more and more farming apps coming on to the market each month, we have produced a round-up of some of the latest and some old favourites to help you decide…

Round-up of the latest strip till kit to cut your cultivation co...

If it’s possible to cultivate only the ground where the crop will grow, why waste money moving soil across the entire field? That is the question posed by proponents of strip…

New Defy 3D nozzle: Sprayer operators give their verdict

Agrochemical giant Syngenta has launched its new Defy 3D spray nozzle, which will provide growers with improved grassweed control and reduced spray drift. The new nozzle is an evolution of…

Livestock

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YOUNGSTOCK MANAGEMENT

Calf coats on test: Which works best for you?

Numerous scientific studies have shown the benefits of using calf coats in the colder winter months. As well as improving weight gain in young calves that aren't yet able to…

GRASSLAND MANAGEMENT

How to use digital rainfall gauges and what's on the market

The rain gauge is one of the easiest tools farmers can use to measure precipitation. The concept of the original cylindrical cup and funnel design dates back to ancient Greece…

LIVESTOCK

Calf bottles and tube feeders on test

It is unsurprising many farmers are switching from bottles to buckets with teats for feeding milk to older calves. Our test, carried out over a four-month period at my family…

HUSBANDRY

Video: 5 cattle clippers on test - which performed best?

Clipping dirty tails and coats should be a regular job on a dairy farm to protect milk quality, as dirty cows are more likely to get mastitis. Brand identification beneath…

HEALTH AND WELFARE

Buyer's guide to ketone testers for dairy farmers

Simple and quick tests that measure ketone levels in dairy cows are allowing farmers to act promptly with interventions to protect milk yields and herd performance. Subclinical ketosis can’t be…

HEALTH AND WELFARE

Buyer's guide: 5 of the latest cow brushes

Cows like a good scratch, so satisfying that instinct with a brush designed for the job can only be good for herd wellbeing. A happy cow will always perform better,…

SLURRY AND MANURE MANAGEMENT

Slurry separation options compared

Dairy farmers are investing in slurry-separation systems amid tighter environmental controls. Balanced with the cost of increasing storage infrastructure to be compliant with nitrate vulnerable zone (NVZ) regulations, separation technologies…