First Drive – Fendt 942 Gen 6

First launched back in July 2019 the next generation Fendt 900 series tractors have made their way to many countries around the world including the UK, I’ve been keen to see the new machines and the updates that come with them and it’s taken me until now to get my hands on one and find out what they’re really like, read on to find out the finer points and my thoughts on a Fendt 942 that I drove at Lister Wilder’s launch event in Warwickshire.

Engine

So let’s start with the engine and gone has the Deutz unit that was used in the predecessors to be replaced by an MAN one which is controlled by the Fendt iD low speed concept which sets the main engine working rpm to between 1,150 – 1,550 rpm and gives maximum torque of 1,970nm.

Transmission

This new engine is coupled to a new VarioDrive transmission with smart all-wheel drive the same as it’s bigger brother the Fendt 1000 series and features a pull-in turn which actively speeds up the front wheels as you make headland turns and pulls the front end of the tractor into the desired line, this in turn reduces turning radius on headland turns by around 10%.

The new transmission is capable of speeds up to 60km/h and if you need to travel at 40km/h for any reason then this is achieved at a modest 950 engine rpm. The Fendt iD low speed concept always keeps the engine in its most optimum band for reduced fuel consumption.

Cab

On the new tractors Fendt have fitted the Fendt Life Cab with better views, wider access steps and more driver comfort, high quality audio system with handsfree mobile phone connectivity and control through the VarioTerminal, efficient climate control with 16 vents positioned around the cab, improved cab suspension and more in cab storage.

I found the cab to be more than comfortable and spacious with all the comforts you’re likely to need for a days work, it was quiet and the climate control kept it at a comfortable temperature.

Fendt Life Cab

Technology & Conveniences

The tractor as tested was equipped with VarioGuide steering control which proved to be accurate to within 2cm and was simple to engage with the simple click of a button, a second click of the same button then engaged the headland control system and followed through the preset sequences relieving the driver of the majority of the workload.

VarioGrip and VarioGrip assistant were also features on the machine and allow simple change of tyre pressure for between field and road work settings all at the touch of a touchscreen button. The assistant feature was very useful as it allowed the driver to either enter the ballast that was fitted and it would calculate tyre pressures and working speed, or if the driver entered a desired working speed it would calculate how much ballast should be used and where it should be fitted as well as the optimum tyre pressures for the task in hand.

I bet there are some of you wondering why you need these features? Simple, they save you time and effort in turn reducing fatigue and ensuring things are always in their best settings, this ultimately leads to increased productivity and money saved, don’t we all love to save money?!

Fendt VarioTerminal

Summary

So, after my brief drive and observations I have to say I’m impressed with the new technology fitted to the tractor and find it hard to believe how simple it is to control a large tractor with so few buttons and inputs in the working environment.

I found it to be comfortable to drive and was easily able to hold a conversation in the cab without raising my voice or struggling to hear, the heated and cooled seat was effective and I climbed out as easily as I climbed in.

I’ll be interested to talk to some real life users of the new generation Fendt 900 series machines once they’ve clocked up some field hours to find out their views. In the meantime I’ve put a little table of the new models below.

ModelRated Power KW/HP
930 Vario217/296
933 Vario239/326
936 Vario261/355
939 Vario283/385
942 Vario305/415

All views in this report are my own, please see the disclaimer for more information.

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