EXCLUSIVE: Zetor launches all-new tractors and hunts for OEM partner to use new engines

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Czech-based Zetor is at Agritechnica in Hanover this week (November 12-18) looking for a new OEM partner to take on its range of three cylinder engines which are currently in prototype stage – and also launching its own new tractor models.

The all-new tractor models that will be available in the first quarter of 2018 – the Utilix and Hortus – are smaller than anything the OEM has made before. The Utilix range consists of two models at 43 and 50hp, and the Hortus range of two models each of 65hp.

Zetor also used Agritechnica to unveil a new design for its popular Major range of tractors (above and below). The new streamlined design will be in production by March next year and will be on the market in June 2018. There are two models each of 80hp, both the Major CL model and the Major HS model are powered by four cylinder Deutz common rail engines.

But Alexandr Kuchar from Zetor said: “Zetor is not only about tractors. We also manufacture a lot of components as part of our business. We currently are developing a three-cylinder engine which is currently in prototype stage. It will be ready for production next year. There is also a six cylinder engine in prototype stage which will be in production at some stage in the future. We are currently on a mission to find an OEM partner to use the three cylinder engines and potentially some of our transmissions as well.”

Turning his attention back to the tractor models, and particularly the new, smaller machines Kuchar said: “Zetor does not currently have a range of small tractors in its portfolio. During the credit crisis two years ago all manufacturers were hit hard as customers were not buying new tractors. However, the under 80hp sector remained strong and stayed steady during the crisis. Zetor is launching the Utilix (above) and Hortus ranges (below) to fill the gap in our portfolio. It’s an exciting time for the brand as we venture into new markets.”

The new Utilix model series includes the Utilix HT45 and the Utilix HT55, while the Hortus series is comprised of the Hortus CL65 and the Hortus HS 65. These tractors are aimed at customers that work in gardening, light terrain work and municipal services. They are also useful for loader work and hobby farming.

While Europe and North America remain the key markets for Zetor tractors, it’s attention more recently has focused on Asia, Africa and South American markets. As a result of this extended reach Zetor tractors can now be purchased in Iran, Turkey, Myanmar (former Burma), Israel, Jordan, Zambia and Kenya.

By Chris McCullough

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Tom is editor of ivtinternational.com and iVT magazine. During his 20 year career in journalism Tom has worked for a diverse range of titles including Men's Health and Cosmopolitan. He also edits iVT's UKi Media & Events stablemate Traffic Technology International.

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