THE biggest tractor yet made with McCormick branding on it is coming to the UK.

The order book is now open for the all-new McCormick X8 VT-Drive tractors, with the three-model range of FPT BetaPower engines capable of 264hp, 286hp and 310hp.

This eclipses the X7 VT-Drive 141-192hp and X7 P6-Drive 141-225hp models, which have stepless and semi-powershift transmissions, respectively.

Ray Spinks, sales director and general manager at McCormick distributor AgriArgo UK, said: “The McCormick name is closely associated with efficient power and performance and the new X8 VT-Drive tractors represent the ultimate expression of that image.

“They have great driver appeal and the unique combination of fuel-efficient BetaPower by FPT engine, ZF heavy-duty transmission and high-capacity hydraulics make it a powerful performer in the field.”

Primary cultivation and powering big grass mowers and other harvesting machinery, will be the main roles performed by these tractors but heavy duty road haulage work will also be in their remit.

As the nomenclature suggests, a key feature is a CVT transmission which provides fine speed control, different operating modes for optimum performance and cost-saving fuel efficiency. Electronically-controlled hydraulics with 157-litre, or 212-litre load-sensing pumps – plus 115-litres/min dedicated to steering and other ancillary systems – are also part of the package.

All in the range have an integral front three-point linkage and pto assembly on their cast steel, load-bearing chassis. At the rear, there's a 12 tonne capacity three-point linkage.

For operating in fields, the X8s can handle tyres up to 900/60 R42 on the rear for maximum traction and soil protection.

Atop the tractor, what McCormick calls its Premiere cab is said to be a driver-focused package, with excellent all-round visibility, especially through the wide one-piece windscreen.

The layout also provides fingertip control of all functions via a seat-mounted console and the touch-screen colour display with Isobus capability.

Precision steering using satellite-based positioning and the high-ratio EasySteer system is optional for accurate bout-matching with least effort.

A 264hp X8.660 VT-Drive finished in metallic red, is currently doing the rounds of McCormick dealers to give farmers and contractors a closer look at the new power unit.