After an initial application on a model made in Italy, Manitou Group, a world reference in all-terrain handling, people lifting, and earthmoving, decided to use Rexroth electronic transmission management on an agricultural telehandler designed and manufactured in France.
This compact model from the MLT NewAG range of Manitou agricultural telehandlers, designed from the desire to develop ever more dynamic, comfortable, and environmentally friendly solutions, is equipped with DRC application software, a technological brick in Rexroth BODAS’s digital ecosystem.
Custom solutions for agriculture
Beyond the desire to reduce the hourly cost of using their machines, farmers today want to limit their environmental impact and, in particular, their CO2 emissions. To meet this demand, Manitou Group has developed the Reduce programme, which provides its customers with complete transparency on the fuel consumption and CO2 emissions of its machines.
The MLT NewAG range of electronically-controlled hydrostatic transmission agricultural telehandlers, launched in 2018, fully meets this objective of reducing CO2 emissions and operating costs, thus combining ecology and savings. Electronification is part of Manitou Group’s global approach as it wishes to adapt the concept of transmission to its machine typology.
Electronic transmission management
The compact MLT 631 NewAG model is available with two types of transmission: hydrodynamic and hydrostatic with electronic control. This dual option, which is part of a customer logic, offers a maximum of transmission solutions meeting all needs.
Bosch Rexroth will be working on the second type of transmission to make this machine more compact, more precise, and more flexible in movement and comfort of use. Electronic management brings the following increasingly appreciated standard features: inching, speed limiter, eco mode, manual throttle … It also offers the possibility of combining flexibility and precision, while reducing fuel consumption, better protecting components, and facilitating diagnosis in the event of failure.
The eco mode function integrated into the DRC application software substantially reduces fuel consumption compared to a conventional hydrodynamic transmission (up to 30% on average).
These new features work in synergy with the solutions launched by Manitou Group, in particular JSM Autopower (Joystick Switch & Move) which, combined with the DRC application software, increases machine productivity and ease of use by adapting the hydraulic flow to the demand required by the handler without them needing to press the accelerator pedal at the same time.
Software that significantly reduces development time
The DRC solution, which is a BODAS ecosystem brick, creates a typing recognisable by any user, a Manitou brand signature, both in terms of machine behaviour and certain specific brand features. This software allows freedom of customisation by giving Manitou teams room for manoeuvre regarding settings, which greatly reduces software modification loops and saves precious time.
This handling and customisation autonomy generally includes support for Manitou, provided by Bosch Rexroth teams, to customise the DRC according to specific market expectations.
“We have control over the settings, so the modification loops are much shorter. DRC software saves us a lot of time during development; this is a real argument for future projects,” commented François Brochard, research and innovation engineer at Manitou Group. “The DRC contains all of Rexroth’s expertise in hydraulic control, so we don’t have to start from scratch. Combined with the skills of the teams, this solution allows us to implement a transmission very quickly; in one week, we can achieve 80% of the expected results. The remaining 20% are refined as and when our testers and users complete their assessments.”