Known for its strong presence in the compact and utility tractor market, Kubota has set its sights higher, with the all new Grand X, with Grand Cab. With the new Grand X, M Series tractors, the company offers a tractor with up to 118 PTO hp, Grand Cab, and new Intelli-Shift Transmission.
“These new Grand X tractors are the beginning of our entry, and set the stage for the future into larger horsepower tractors, and moving to the farm market with bigger cabs, bigger engines and bigger PTO horsepower,” says Buck Trawick, director of marketing. “Our company has the experience with the smaller horsepower tractors, and we see big growth opportunities with the larger tractor market.”
The Kubota Grand X is the next generation of M Series mid-size deluxe tractors, which have been known as multi-tasking for loader work, hay handling, and mowing tractors. But the latest equipment options are gearing these machines for additional farm applications.
The four Grand X models range from 85 to 118 PTO hp, and are powered by four-cylinder turbocharged Common Rail System diesel engines. To meet the EPA’s Interim Tier 4 standard, the engines are equipped with (EGR) Exhaust Gas Recirculation Valves and (DPF) Diesel Particulate Filter systems.
Under the hood, operators will find an easy to clean air filter system, and slide out A/C condensor that allows access for cleaning by just undoing on thumb screw.
“The new Grand X models are built with an all-new cab,” explains Paul Williams, Senior Product Manager, Sales and Marketing . “The Grand Cab is 10” wider and over 7” taller than our previous cab model. Also, it’s a four post cab, a four post frame allows both sides in whole to become the door to provide unrestricted entry and exiting ”
The 24-speed Intelli-Shift transmission with Auto Mode, is an 8-speed powershift with three ranges that can be programmed for automatic up-shifting and down-shifting in two or three speed increments, therefore increasing productivity.
The cab provides a quieter work environment, which is accomplished by relocating the hydraulic pumps from on top of the transmission to the right side therefore allowing the pump noise to go downward to the ground.
Also as standard features is a deluxe, air ride swivel seat, accompanied by the tilt and telescoping steering wheel increasing operator comfort. The previous dual fuel tanks have been replaced with a single 52 gallon fuel tank. Options in the cab include an instructor seat, and stereo system.
Another area where the Grand X models have increased capacity is the three-point hitch, which now boasts a 30% increase in overall capacity and a design change to externally mounted cylinders with heavier castings.
“As standard, we offer an electric over hydraulic PTO system with both 540 and 1000 speeds, both PTO shafts are standard.” Williams says.
Two of the bigger hurdles to entering the row crop market have been an adaptable hydraulic system and tread spacings, and the new Grand X line provide additional adaptability in these markets.
“We tested our new hydraulic system on sprayers and vacuum planters through the winter and spring,” Williams says. “Today’s air planters require flow control on the valves and need a pressure compensated system. Now, with the new deluxe remote control valves we offer as a factory option on the M126GX and M135GX, with two valves standard with flow control on each valve that incorporate an unloading valve that essentially turn the open center system into a closed center, pressure compensated hydraulic system , operating a vacuum pump on a corn planter was accomplished. The unloading valve also allows the vacuum pump to spin down to zero without hydraulic lock-up.”
Being able to configure tractors for 30” row spacing commonly found in corn fields could be problematic, but Williams says with a new fender design these tractors can be set up for a perfect 30” spacing on the rear tires and about 31” spacing on the front, this works well because the front axle has narrower tires therefore leading the wider 18.4R38 tires down a 30” row is easily accomplished.
A popular steering feature, Bi-Speed Turn, assists in tighter, smoother turns and is standard on all models, and exclusive from Kubota. When engaged via the electric switch, the Bi-Speed clutch mechanism kicks in when the front wheel turning angle exceeds 35 degrees, literally pulling the tractor around.
This September, Kubota Corporation will celebrate its 40th anniversary after marking its 1.5 millionth unit sold in the U.S. As it commemorates this milestone it’s also planning on expanding its factories in the U.S. Kubota is also investing $73 million in a new 500,000 sq. ft. production facility in Georgia. The company currently makes 50% of the units sold in the U.S. and all of its loaders stateside, and this new facility will dedicate its production capacity to the standard L Series compact tractors. Opening in January 2013, the facility will have a production capacity of 22,000 units a year, and establish about 200 jobs.
Kubota looks toward the future in building momentum for its market in the U.S.
“We are serious about getting into larger equipment,” Trawick says. “Right now, we are looking at identifying those opportunities and preparing our dealer network. We feel, that for us, the table is set.”