New Holland Agriculture has selected the PneuTrac from Trelleborg Wheel Systems as a fitment for its new T4 tractor range. The tyres can be specified for New Holland T4 N/F/LP models in sizes VF480/65R28 and VF280/70R18.
We first encountered PneuTrac at the Agritechnica show four years ago. Back then, Mitas described the combined track and tyre concept as a “revolution” in tyre design, however a spokesperson admitted there was still “some way to go” until a commercial product came to market. Since then we’ve gone some way, and Trelleborg, which acquired Mitas last year, has now announced the launch of a market-ready PneuTrac product.
Mitas reports that the development of its PneuTrac concept has reached a new milestone with the start of field tests. According to the company, these show the advantages of the product’s larger footprint and better tractive force over standard but also IF agricultural tyres. Thanks to positive progress in testing, Mitas has outlined its goals for further development of PneuTrac. The aim is to measure and compare characteristics of Mitas PneuTrac and rubber tracks during 2016 to clearly position PneuTrac among tyre and track solutions offered on the market. Mitas’ goal is to have all data needed for a successful market launch available by the end of 2017.
Following on from the development of 18 and 38-inch versions of its PneuTrac, Mitas has now produced a 28-version of the tyre/track hybrid tyre technology it is working on. This week the new size is on display at the SIMA agri business fair in Paris. The tyre maker has mounted the 480/65 R28 PneuTrac on the front axle of a Case IH Maxxum tractor, paired with a size 600/65 R38 PneuTrac; this can be viewed in Hall 3, on stand E016. The previously-released PneuTrac 280/70 R18 and 600/65 R38 are currently undergoing intensive dynamic tests.
Although only a concept at present and “still some way off” from its commercial release, Mitas holds high hopes for the PneuTrac, a product it says combines the best of both worlds in traditional pneumatic tyres and rubber tracks. The Czech Republic-based tyre maker is carrying out intensive tests on a prototype PneuTrac fitted to an 18-inch rim, has begun dynamic testing using a 38-inch fitment and is planning to test a new, third size. Mitas says it will announce its plans for PneuTrac at the EIMA agricultural exhibition in Bologna, Italy at a press conference scheduled for 13 November.
Ask many Subaru owners if they’re familiar with Fuji Heavy Industries and you’ll receive a negative response, even though one of the company’s products is parked in the driveway. Czech Republic-based tyre maker Mitas has faced a similar situation in recent years. Even though the off-road specialist’s share of the European agricultural tyre market (not counting imports from outside Europe) is said to be around 35 per cent, recognition of the Mitas name doesn’t necessarily reflect this. The company now intends to change this state of affairs, and the percentage of tyres it produces under the Mitas brand name is set to markedly increase over the coming five years.