New Tractor Builds on Winning Strategy

Deere rolls 8R series with much improved cab, revised track machines with enhanced suspension.

Published on: Aug 20, 2009

Tractor makers keep turning up the heat in an effort to get farmers to open their checkbooks and buy. The latest tractor series from John Deere - the 8R Series - builds on the 8030 line-up for season 2010. The 8R and companion 8RT series - T for track - will feature more power and cab enhancements that'll surprise some potential buyers.

The new John Deere CommandView II Cab is an exercise in ergonomics, which the company showed during a tour of its Product Engineering Center, where virtual reality tools are put to work on a wide range of design issues. For example, something that might appear as simple as airflow from the heater-air-conditioning system, turns out to be an intricate design exercise. "It's the difference between a window air-conditioner blasting you in the face, and central air," comments Ken Moehle, manager, global tractor and core technology engineer, who talked about the use of virtual reality design tools.

The new 8RT series includes air-cushion suspension for a smoother ride and faster road speeds - up to 24 miles per hour. The three 8RT models offered range up to 345 engine horsepower.
The new 8RT series includes air-cushion suspension for a smoother ride and faster road speeds - up to 24 miles per hour. The three 8RT models offered range up to 345 engine horsepower.

Roomy operator's platform

Ergonomics has become an alternative word for "more cup holders" and while you'll find those handy beverage stations in the new cab, you'll also find a redesigned console that swivels with the seat, includes its own computer information screen for tractor monitoring, and much-enhanced comfort. Even the training seat to the operator's left has three positions for convenience - open for seating, up and out of the way, or down as a laptop table - making this a handy rolling office.

By the numbers the new cab is 10% bigger overall and has 7% more glass than its predecessor - but there's a lot more visibility given the design changes to the console.

John Deere uses its new numbering system so the 8 stands for the size, the body of the number is engine horsepower (say 225 for 225 hp), R stand for capability and price level while T would be a specific configuration like tracks. There are six wheeled machines in the 8R line including the 8225R at 225 engine horsepower; the 8245R at 245 engine hp; the 8270R at 270 engine hp; 8295R at 295 engine hp; the 8320R at 320 engine hp; and the 8345R at 345 engine hp. That 8345R is the largest row crop machine John Deere has offered.

New on tracks

Perhaps the biggest news for this year is the retooling of the 8-series track machines. The new 8RT tractors have been redesigned from the ground up. Each is equipped with the AirCushion Suspension System first made available on the 9030T series. That suspension takes a lot of the bumps out of that track right. The company is also making the Infinitely Variable Transmission available for this tractor class too. It's standard on the 8345RT - the biggest machine - and option on all other models.

There are three track models in the line-up - the 8295RT at 295 engine hp; the 8320RT at 320 engine hp; and the 8345RT at 345 engine hp. Maximum transport speed has been pushed to 24 miles per hour for the track line as well. And you'll find a larger - 200-gallon - fuel tank on the machines for 54% greater capacity versus the old 8-series track machines.

There are also more track width choices - and track spacing can range from 72-inches to 160-inches wide using a field-install kit.

Power for the entire line comes from a 9-liter PowerTech Plus 6 cyl. engine that meets current Tier III emission standards. Those engines actually saw a fuel-efficiency increase when they were launched in the 8030 series three years ago.

You can learn more about these machines by visiting your local John Deere dealer. Check out the table below for complete model information.

John Deere 8R Series Tractors are available at your local John Deere dealer. The 8225R has a base list price starting at $165,929. The 8295RT has a base list price starting at $240,954.

8R and 8RT Series Tractor Model Summary

Model

Engine HP*

PTO HP

Engine Size/Cylinders

RPM

8225R

225

181

9.0L PowerTech Plus / 6 cyl.

2,100

8245R

245

198

9.0L PowerTech Plus / 6 cyl.

2,100

8270R

270

220

9.0L PowerTec Plus / 6 cyl.

2,100

8295R

295

242

9.0L PowerTech Plus / 6 cyl.

2,100

8320R

320

263

9.0L PowerTech Plus / 6 cyl.

2,100

8345R

345

284

9.0L PowerTech Plus / 6 cyl.

2,100

8295RT

295

239

9.0L PowerTech Plus / 6 cyl.

2,100

8320RT

320

260

9.0L PowerTech Plus / 6 cyl.

2,100

8345RT

345

281

9.0L PowerTech Plus / 6 cyl.

2,100

*Note: Rated engine hp (ISO), 97/68/EC, at 2,100 engine rpm