The Grassland & Muck event was due to have been the first opportunity to see the new CLAAS AXION 900 TERRA TRAC in action. On display would have been the top-of-the-range 445hp AXION 990 TERRA TRAC, which was due to have been powering a set of triple mowers.
Along with the smaller 355hp AXION 930, the AXION TERRA TRAC is the first half-track tractor on the market to have a fully suspended track system and the TERRA TRAC system developed by CLAAS for the AXION calls upon the company’s wide experience gained over 30 years of rubber track development for the LEXION combine.
To meet the specific power transfer needs of a tractor and to handle the high levels of torque, the drive wheel on the AXION TERRA TRAC unit is larger than that found on the LEXION and has spokes with attached rubber blocks to aid self-cleaning. The tracks use a force-locking drive and are maintained at a higher tension for even pressure distribution.
The AXION TERRA TRAC is the first half-track unit to have full suspension. Combined with the front axle and 4-point cab suspension on the AXION, this not only aids ground contact and reduces wheelslip, but gives the operator an unprecedented level of comfort compared to other tracked tractors.
Drive to the TERRA TRAC unit is through a standard CMATIC transmission, but in place of the trumpet housings there are ‘saxophones’, which bridge the differences in height and length. The actual drive is through a cardan shaft between the PTO shaft and the TERRA TRAC intake shaft.
Unlike other track units, the AXION TERRA TRAC unit is able to pivot over a range from +8° to -15°. Compared to full track or rigidly mounted half-track systems, this ensures that optimum ground contact is maintained at all times.
Tracks are available in widths of 635mm, 735mm and 890mm and all have transport widths similar to tyres and below 3.0m. Total footprint on the widest 890mm track is 3.87m2, which is 35% larger when compared to a 900/60 R42 tyre. As a result, tractive power from TERRA TRAC is some 15% greater and ground pressure is reduced by 50%, so reducing compaction. This in turn avoids the need for deeper cultivations to remove panning.
To avoid scuffing when turning, the AXION TERRA TRAC features a unique intelligent steering system which gives the AXION TERRA TRAC similar driving characteristics to a wheeled tractor. At speeds below 12kph, this will automatically bias the inner TERRA TRAC brake and to aid this steering assistance, within CEBIS the operator is able to select from either Strong, Medium or Small pre-set levels.
The AXION TERRA TRAC also incorporates a height adjustment system. By being able to select either a low, medium or upper position for the track units, the operator is able to select the optimum height for the implement being used behind the tractor, or increase ground clearance when baling or grain carting.