For 2014 a lot of farmer attention with new equipment will be on the engines manufacturers offer in their higher horsepower machines. Case IH announced its new line-up for 2014 this week and while engine tech was the hot topic, the shear scope of the company's launch put as one of its biggest in history.
From a new line of Magnum tractors to the biggest ever Steiger tractor, the company is making a statement for 2014. And during the launch event, held in Denver this week, Jim Walker, vice president, North America, offered his take on the market. "At the center of our effort is the producer and we want to help the farmer of today succeed," he says.
Walker explained that the customer is at the center of the company's approach to product development and service. From there the next level is to provide innovative products supported by experienced people who can provide an "exceptional customer experience."
Case IH coined the phrase Efficient Power back in 2007 when it started on its current strategic direction. It became a guide for where the company needed to go as the phased process of reducing emissions pressured all equipment manufacturers to retool engines in new ways. The company is now layering "agronomic design" along with that efficient power mantra.
But the new Tier 4b - or Tier 4 final - engines that were the star at the rollout this week. "With our Tier 4b engines that use SCR [selective catalytic reduction] we can deliver more power with less fuel consumption," he says.
This was a hot button topic throughout the event as presenter after presenter talked about the efficiency of the company's SCR-only strategy. As you peruse this gallery we'll offer more information about that strategy and what makes it work for Case IH to achieve final Tier 4 status.
Walker did note that Case IH has some experience with SCR use already. "We have 35,000 SCR machines in North America that have run for more than 17 million hours," he explains.
The company's focus on the retail customer, and a continued effort to partner with the dealer to grow the market footprint is paying off. Walker notes that sales for the company have risen from $1 billion to $4 billion in the past six year. He adds that it appears that softer crop prices may slow equipment sales in the near-term, but not cause a drop off a cliff.
"We may see the combine market drop to 10,000 units from 12,500 today," he says. "We won't see it collapse to earlier low levels of the past. We're entering a stable farm era."
That market slowdown may be welcome at Case IH. Walker notes that the company is positioned to grow but they're ready for the market to "take a breather."
Check out this gallery for information on the new product line, the innovations and that new Tier 4b engine strategy. And you'll be able to see these new machines for the first time at the 2013 Farm Progress Show.
You can also learn more about the equipment by visiting caseih.com.
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