Following the announcement made last October, New Holland – or rather its parent company CNH Industrial – recently completed its acquisition of the 'grass' and 'soil' equipment lines of Kongskilde.
This chunk of Kongskilde's business comprised a factory in Poland and another in Sweden, plus other facilities. The deal now gives New Holland access to a wider range of machinery and implements – equipment that was previously offered under a variety of brand-names, including Kongskilde, Overum, JF and even Howard.
Existing Kongskilde sales organisations, dealers and importers will continue to operate with no disruption, according to New Holland. Meanwhile, the tractor and machinery giant will gradually integrate the additional products into its own portfolio.
Kongskilde offers some interesting products – including familiar-looking foragers (from the JF camp) and ploughs (previously from the Overum stable).
One of its most noteworthy products at present is the rather large GXT triple-mower. With a working width of 12.3m, it is claimed to be capable of knocking of between 10 and 20ha/hour. The latter figure appears to be a 'mildly' ambitious target.
Thus far, variants have been spotted branded as either JF or Kongskilde machines.
The rear mowers are suspended from a trailed frame. Kongskilde says that this configuration facilitates a large working width (because the weight of the larger mowers is not carried only by the tractor). All GXT machines have 'pendulum' suspension, which helps to reduce ground damage (scalping).
Because the frame incorporates 'power steering', Kongskilde says that the turning radius is relatively small – considering the overall size of the machine. In fact, the headland only needs to be twice as wide as the machine's working width – in order to have enough space to turn around.
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The GXT, depending on its exact specification, can have a transport width of just 3m; the steered frame is said to make the machine very manoeuvrable when squeezing through tight gate-ways onto narrow lanes. Kongskilde says that it is possible to bring the GXT from its transport to working position in just 30 seconds. The change-over needs only the tractor's own hydraulics; additional, complex control panels are not needed. Moreover, it can all be done from the tractor seat.
The belt-driven conditioner consists of PE (polyethylene) Y-shaped, finger-type flails. These are flexible, to resist breakage following impacts from stones or 'foreign' objects that may have been lying in the field.
Meanwhile, the Top Dry system – by moving just one handle – enables switching from wide spreading to aggressive conditioning. The swather (or grouper / collector if you prefer) is based on a familiar belt-type conveyor.
Best of the rest
Kongskilde has been showcasing its other wares recently, both here in Ireland and across Europe.
At this year's FTMTA (Farm Tractor and Machinery Trade Association) show in Co. Kildare in February, the firm exhibited a range of machines – including a Kongskilde-badged FCT 1260 trailed forager that might be more familiar to Irish farmers and contractors as a JF-branded unit.
Also at the same show was a Kongskilde-badged HRT reversible plough; Irish farmers might previously have been familiar with blue-liveried Overum implements.
Will we see such machines bearing a New Holland yellow or blue livery in the future – if not here in Ireland, perhaps in some nearby markets? Only time will tell...