JCB has launched a new 20t flagship farm loader which has 6t payload and a new drive line for improved efficiency and economy.

Known as the JCB 457S, the company suggests that it will find favour with sugar beet hauliers, big biogas plants, and large-scale contract silage and muck spreading teams.

Family connections

The latest loader shares many components with the industrially orientated JCB 457, the main differences being a new rear chassis and counterweight, new transmission, axles, wheels and tyres.

JCB loader six tonne lift
The new loader is a high capacity machine aimed at the larger user

To help with conserving diesel, the engine operates at two power levels, the higher is the Dynamic setting with 282hp while the lower Economy option provides 224hp and auto shut off.

The motor itself is a Cummins 6.7L unit providing 1,200Nm at peak torque.

Six-speed transmission

To get this power to the wheels, there is a new six-speed manual/auto powershift with selectable torque converter lock-up.

JCB notes that this new powershift transmission lies at the heart of the new model. It provides six forward and three reverse ratios, with torque converter lock-up, enabling direct mechanical drive in all forward gears.

JCB loader with six tonne lift
Tyre options include those suitable for off-road and hard surface use

The wheels themselves are mounted on wide track heavy-duty 20-stud axles with limited slip or auto locking differentials.

There is a choice of tyres available as original fitment. High load capacity 710mm or 800mm radial traction tyres for hard surfaces may be selected.

Back end adaptions

At the rear of the machine, the specially designed rear chassis has a larger 400L fuel tank and increased departure angle, along with a wide core radiator with swing-out auto reverse hydraulically-driven fan.

A 20t tow hitch is provided with road speeds of up to 48km/h being possible, minimising transport delays between jobs on separate sites.

Front end performance is determined by which of two loader arm options is chosen. The standard High Torque arms give a lift height of 4.3m, while the High Lift alternative increases the clearance to 4.8m at the pin pivot point.