There is now a new world’s fastest tractor, and it’s got 1,000 horsepower inside.
Britain has a strange obsession with taking industrial vehicles and then making them go much faster than they would ever need to go in real life. Take Honda’s Mean Mower V2, which recently debuted as the world’s fastest riding lawn mower with a top speed of over 150 mph. And it can still cut grass. Does it need to go 150 mph to cut grass? Of course not. That’s why it’s strange.
And now we have British industrial machinery maker JCB joining in with their Fastrac, a tractor with 1,000 horsepower. Does a tractor need 1,000 horsepower? No. But is it unreasonably fast for a tractor? Absolutely.
Here it is...Britain's fastest tractor. Achieving a speed of 103.6mph, the #Fastrac is powered by JCB’s 7.2 litre, 6-cylinder DieselMax engine. The tractor is capable of delivering 1,000hp and 2,500Nm of torque. #WFT #JCBWFT #Tractor #Speed https://t.co/Zer1iDT7Ki pic.twitter.com/MSLkRZHMGz— JCB (@JCBmachines) June 21, 2019
JCB got the help of Williams Formula One team to make this record-breaking tractor. Beneath the engine cover is a 7.2-L 6-cylinder turbodiesel engine with 1,000 horsepower and 1,843 lb-ft of torque. Getting to that kind of power required extensive modifications, including upgraded fuel injectors, valve seats, and auxiliary piston cooling to handle the increased heat load.
The stock Agco CVT was tossed in favor of a 6-speed manual transmission from a semi-truck. The camshaft is still stock, but the rest of the tractor was put "on a diet,” according to Farmer’s Weekly, and several aerodynamic enhancements were added to the front fascia.
Put it all together and the Fastrac managed to reach 103.6 mph at the Elvington Airfield near York to win the title of world’s fastest tractor. To put that into perspective, the next fastest tractor was Top Gear’s Track-Tor, which boasted a top speed of 87.27 mph.
All of this was masterminded by JCB Chairman, Lord Bamford. "It is British engineering at its best and it really does highlight the skills and innovation we have in our engineering team,” said Lord Bamford in a statement. “They have done a truly fantastic job."
Fantastic, sure, but is it necessary? You be the judge.