WESTERN PRODUCER — An August announcement from Case IH claimed it’s the “year of the tractor” for that brand, as it debuts seven new or redesigned models at the U.S. Farm Progress Show in Decatur, Illinois.
There were several new Farmall models introduced, including the novel 75C Electric version. But the tractor most likely to steal the spotlight at the show, along with attracting the most interest from prairie growers, was the Steiger 715 Quadtrac, which becomes the first standard production tractor to break the 700 horsepower mark.
“We launched our model year 2024 Steiger lineup from the 425 to 645 at our National Farm Machinery Show launch earlier this year,” says Tom Curley, Case IH global product manager for Steiger.
“Now we’re offering the 715 Quadtrac as a new launch here at Farm Progress, but it’s been available for order since June from Case IH dealers for production in 2024.”
Until recently, the horsepower ratings of the biggest tractors available from all major brands had been static for several years, hovering around the 600 horsepower mark. But with the appearance of the Steiger 715 Quadtrac and other brands now making a jump to higher engine ratings, it begs the question: has the horsepower race started again?
According to Curley, more power is exactly what farmers have been asking for.
“It’s all based on customer feedback,” he says. “The goal is to improve productivity … and pull large drills and seeders at the speeds customers want to. For the 715 Quadtrac we had an extensive development program, including a significant amount of testing throughout the United States and Western Canada. The sole purpose of this tractor with 715 horsepower is to get more done in an hour.”
Available as a Quadtrac only, it gets a rated engine horsepower that matches its model number. Peak horsepower tops out at 778. That power comes out of the all-new C16 TST engine from Case IH’s sister company, FPT Industrial. It uses a new cooling package that was specifically built for the 715.
“That engine was purposely designed for the 715 Quadtrac to meet the demands of our customers,” Curley says. “It has an improved, updated 16×2 power shift transmission. It’s a heavier-duty version of our current transmission. It was designed specifically for the 715 Quadtrac.”
In order to feed that big diesel, the 715 gets a 520 gallon (1,968 litre) fuel tank, which is 50 gallons more than the other Steigers carry.
“It puts all that power to the ground through a new undercarriage,” Curley adds. “It maintains roughly the same width of tractor to fit down the road as needed, but it also puts more power to the ground with a larger footprint, larger drive wheel and longer tracks.”
The tracks are 12 inches longer overall and leave a footprint about two inches longer than the other Steigers. Thirty-inch wide tracks are standard, but 36-inch tracks are an option. Those big track modules can move the 715 down the road at a rated 42 km/h, which is a little faster than the 38 km/h where other Steigers top out.
The heavier undercarriage and larger components add heft to the 715, making it nearly two tons heavier than the previous flagship Quadtrac. And it can handle more ballasting as well, to help convert all that engine power into usable traction.
“The tractor is about 3,500 pounds heavier than a 620 Quadtrac,” Curley says. “For those needing to put the power to the ground, such as those pulling large air seeders, we will allow up to 72,000 pounds (32,658 kilograms) GVW.”
The new 715 Quadtrac also sports a new look for the brand with a redesigned hood and slimmed down exhaust stack to improve visibility from the cab. The new hood design will eventually be rolled out on the smaller Steigers and all tractors in the Case IH lineup. There’s also a new LED lighting package that puts out 78,000 lumens to improve visibility at night.
“The 715 includes all the latest and greatest AFS Connect base technology available in all the other 2024 Steigers, including remote display viewing, dual display capability and accuTurn, among others,” says Curley.
Case IH expects to begin delivering 715 Quadtracs to dealerships in the first quarter of 2024.
“We’re really looking forward to customer feedback (on the tractor) through this spring and next year.”
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