John Deere Unveils Electric Powered Tractor Prototype12/07/2016
The iconic American machinery manufacturer showcased the new prototype ahead of the Sima show in France next month.
While the company dabbled in alternative fuel sources for its full-size agricultural tractors in the past, including a hybrid electric version, this concept called SESAM (Sustainable Energy Supply for Agricultural Machinery) is the first fully powered by a battery pack.
Where you would normally find a large diesel engine under the hood, there are stacks of battery packs adding up to 130 kWh of capacity:
That’s more energy than in Tesla’s highest capacity battery pack (100 kWh). SESAM needs it to tow large tools and to perform other tasks, which it can do while in “off mode” without having a large diesel engine running as highlighted by the company in a video released last week.
As for power, the vehicle is equipped with two 150 kW electric motors for a total power output of up to 300kW (402hp).
John Deere expects that the electric motors will require much less maintenance than a diesel engine. They will also provide redundancy and last longer.
John Deere didn’t release any detail about the availability of the new machine, but it also announced a new development group focused on the electrification of its machinery. We could soon see more electric machines.
It’s impressive to see the tractor perform demanding tasks while barely making a sound.