When developing a new tractor series, the most important consideration is not to invent as many new features as possible, but rather to focus on those that customers really need in their work. This is how product management can set the guidelines and targets for product development.
Valtra has traditions going back decades of working together closely with actual tractor users. The Suolahti factory, for example, has focused entirely on tailor-making tractors as ordered and specified by individual customers for the past thirty years, instead of mass-producing them according to forecasts and keeping them in stock. As a result, the factory has a very good feel all the time for the kinds of features and equipment that customers really want. In Finland, Valtra also sells tractors directly to customers without intermediaries, thereby maintaining a very close connection between the factory and customers. In addition, Valtra customers for decades have been welcome to visit the factory and see their own tractor being built.
“We asked customers what kind of tractor they wanted.”
“When we set out to design the new G Series, we put on our boots and went out to ask customers what kind of tractor they wanted. Ideas that were often repeated included, for instance, the perfect front-loader tractor and offering features from big tractors also on smaller tractors,” says Tuomas Nevaranta, Director, Product Management.
During the design phase, the wishes and needs of customers need to be translated into technical solutions. For example, creating the perfect front-loader tractor meant giving it a large panoramic roof, excellent weight distribution, a wide range of front loaders, and joystick control on all models. The Live 3 feature was already offered on bigger tractors, but now it has been incorporated into the design of the G Series, making it available in the 100–140hp class. Live 3 makes it possible to use the joystick for three separate functions when loading bales, making for instance, these kinds of tasks faster and easier.
A small tractor with the features of a big tractor
The tractor industry has long thought along the same lines as the car industry, offering the best options and accessories only on the biggest and most expensive models. With the new G Series, however, Valtra is offering the same features that are available on tractors with more than 200 horsepower.
G Series Versu models get the same precision farming features as on bigger tractors, including Valtra Guide automated steering, Section Control, Variable Rate Control, Task Doc and the U-Pilot headland management system. Operating the G Series has been kept simple thanks to the award-winning SmartTouch user interface, which allows the user to programme the tractor’s functions very precisely according to individual preferences, adding to the premium user experience. Similarly, if the tractor is used by more than one driver, individual preferences are easy to set and recall every time a new driver enters the cab.