Times have moved on considerably since 1892 when John Froelich invented the first petrol powered tractor. This breakthrough was soon to revolutionise the farming industry. During the 1920’s the new concept really took off, with tractors beginning to become mainstream.
In more recent times the size and power output have been the most impressive increase. With John Deere set to release their new 8400R 400HP wheeled tractor at cereals 2017, and Case Steiger producing well over 650 HP you wonder where this will stop.
Of course the most recent and perhaps the hottest topic when it comes to tractors currently is autonomous vehicles. These driverless tractors rely on remote control, sensors and autonomy. It detects obstacles, alerts the farmer if there are problems and of course robots don’t need sleep, so can work round the clock.
The history of tractors is an interesting one and over the years there have been many skills and experiences passed down the generations but as the machines become more and more automated these skills are no longer required. Could it really be that soon we’ll see driverless tractors with 100’s of horsepower working alone in the fields?