The world of tractor transmissions was once a simple one, with one system governing all tractors. As the years have passed, more and more variants have been added to the tractor tranny arsenal, making the explanation of how power is transmitted from the engine to the wheels more and more complex.
Nowadays, transmissions vary greatly and tractor models may be equipped with:
- continuously variable transmission (CVT);
- power shuttle;
- power shift;
- semi-power shift;
- and all the brand-specific variants (like the Mahindra synchro shuttle).
With a constant mesh transmission, you have to stop the tractor every time you need to switch gears. Stepping up from this, a hydrostatic transmission will give you a handful of ranges while using engine revs to regulate speed. While many people swear by their hydrostatic tranny, it’s worth keeping in mind they do tend to use a lot of power and are more suited to lower horsepower applications (think lower hp tractors and ride-on lawnmowers). The next step up is the synchromesh, which allows you to change gears while moving.
To find out more about the shuttle options on the Aussie market, we spoke to Mark Harris, co-owner of Coast to Country Tractors, about Mahindra’s synchro shuttle which, despite the fancy dance-move-sounding name, has nothing to do with this kind of shuttling:
And everything to do with this kind:
According to Mark, Mahindra’s range of tractors go from 24 to 100 hp. The shuttle systems give you a lever which allows you to switch from forward to reverse while maintaining the same speed. Incredibly useful for front end loader work.
“The latest is a 60 hp models with a 15 x 15 synchro shuttle. Available in 2WD or 4WD with two spool valves standard.”
Mahindra’s synchro shuttle transmission provides smooth shifting in every gear. You get 12 forward speeds and 12 reverse, giving a further boost to the tractor’s performance.