Kubota's third generation M7 tractors
Now in its third generation, the latest M7 models meet EU Stage V emission regulations, and combine further refinements with enhanced functionality, and greater operator convenience.
“New features across the range include Xpress restart, Multispeed steering, advanced LED lighting package, and Tractor Implement Management (TIM),” explains Kubota product manager for agriculture, Luke Sellwood. “The M7003 buyer also has access to a greater range of optional extras.”
The M7003 series offers three models – M7133, M7153 and M7173. Power outputs from the four-cylinder engine remain unchanged at 130hp, 150hp and 170hp respectively, with a 20hp boost on the two lower powered models, and a 5hp boost for the flagship M7173.
Revised engine characteristics deliver a constant power band from 1800-2100rpm, while a constant torque level extends from 1200-1600rpm. Full power is delivered at 1900rpm, while maximum torque arrives at 1500rpm.
EU Stage V emissions compliance is achieved using a combination of advanced diesel particulate filter (DPF) and selective catalytic reduction (SCR), allowing low-pressure EGR to be eliminated. The DPF cleaning interval has been doubled from 3,000 to 6,000 hours, contributing to lower operating costs.
Transmission options continue to include the stepless KVT and a powershift gearbox that uses six powershift speeds in five synchronised ranges. The powershift transmission now benefits from additional functionality, with the development of Xpress restart. Activated by a switch, Xpress restart provides a brake-to-stop function, which avoids the need to depress the clutch pedal to stop the tractor. This feature suits repetitive start-stop tasks such as round baling, and loader work.
All models are available with Multispeed steering control. This new development allows the operator to select the steering ratio to suit working speed and application, offering greater comfort and convenience with headland turns, for example.
“The standard steering ratio is four turns lock-to-lock,” says Mr Sellwood. “With Multispeed, the operator can choose from a 20%, 40% or 60% reduction in the number of turns required.”
At its quickest setting, Multispeed allows full-lock to be reached using just 1.5 turns when travelling forward, and 2.4 turns when travelling backwards. For safety, the system automatically disengages at a forward speed of 18kph (12kph in reverse), and re-engages as speed drops below this threshold the travel speed slows. The system is completely disabled when forward speed reaches 25kph (20kph in reverse) and can only be re-engaged when the tractor slows and the Multispeed selector switch is repositioned.
M7003 tractors also get a swap-valve function, allowing re-assignment of spool valves to suit operator preferences for fingertip or joystick control.
Improved lighting is also available for M7003 tractors, offering three different levels of configuration. Buyers can choose 10 halogen worklights, or 10 LED worklights, or an enhanced package with 14 LED worklights. In addition, tractor options now include automatic climate control, and electrically adjustable and heated mirrors.
Advances in precision farming technology include the integration of TIM – Tractor Implement Management. Now with AEF certification on M7003 models, TIM is a bi-directional communication between tractor and implement through ISOBUS, that allows the implement to control tractor functionality on-demand, for example when round baling.
“TIM has the ability to optimise efficiency with AEF certified TIM-compatible implements, such as the Kubota BV5 round balers,” says Mr Sellwood. “By taking over repetitive baling tasks, TIM can slow and stop the tractor, unload the bale and restart baling, to deliver bales with near-identical densities.”