THERE'S options aplenty with the new Valtra models, writes MARK SAUNDERSYou can have it any colour as long as it's - any colour.
AGCO Australia calls it "a la carte" tractor buying - a move away from conventional tractor ordering.
AGCO Australia's Valtra product manager David Rutherford said tractor customisation was a growing trend in Europe.
"About 50 per cent of customers use the a la carte system to order their Valtras in Europe," David said.
"It ensures they get exactly what they need in a tractor, straight from the factory."
The turn-around time for a Valtra Versu or Direct custom-made tractor is about 12-16 weeks for Australian customers.
The new Valtras can be custom delivered in one of nine colours, which include metallic paint options.
There are also hundreds of combinations of other features, from a driver's seat and console that can be rotated to face rearwards, to a forestry cabin which has a polycarbonate glass roof.
Not that the standard models don't come off the shelf without a host of extras to start with.
At the launch of the Versu and Direct models at Phillip Island recently, The Weekly Times had the opportunity to drive the new tractors and see first-hand what the "extras as standard" list included.
On the Direct models - there are eight of them - a continuously variable transmission is probably the most obvious feature. It's the first time a Valtra tractor has been fitted with a CVT and thanks to an uncluttered cab layout, driving a Direct is child's play.
Once the engine is started and the direction of travel is chosen via a small toggle lever on the steering column, all you have to do is depress the foot accelerator pedal.
The four transmission ranges, denoted A, B, C and D can be selected via a switch on the underside of the armrest controls.
Another clever standard feature of the new Valtras is an economical engine rev drop at idle.
Once the park brake is engaged, the engine revs drop to 650 per minute, down from 850rpm, to save fuel.
The low idle speed can be achieved thanks to the long stroke length of the Sisu diesel engines, which are used to power the Direct and Versu models.
The cabin is also exceptionally quiet. It's rated at 68 decibels, down from a traditional standard of 72dB and the noise reduction is immediately noticeable once the tractor is running either at idle or higher engine revs.
Other small details in the cabin include an LED display on the right-hand side, front pillar of the cabin, which shows a variety of engine and tractor telemetry such as ground speed and gear selection.
There's even an "Info Light" system, which leaves a light on over the entry steps when the door is open, similar to many modern cars.
Externally, it is difficult to tell the new Versu and Direct models apart.
The bonnet and rear mudguards have been re-designed to a more sleek, flowing look.
Four-cylinder models, denoted by an 'N', have two side vents while the six-cylinder models, denoted by a 'T', also have vents on top of the bonnet.
Valtra has re-located the fuel tank on the new Versus and Directs, from a central position in the tractor frame to under the left-hand entry steps of the cabin.
The standard fuel tank is 275 litres and there is an option to move to 375 litres.
All the major service points for the engine lubricants are located on the left-hand side (looking forward from the cabin), or cool side of the engine.
A large, one-piece side cover is easily removed to reveal the service points while the cooling system elements are accessed at the front of the engine bay once the bonnet is raised.
Valtra has also separated the hydraulic oil from the transmission oil on the Versus and Directs to avoid contamination issues.
At the rear of the tractor, a safety power take-off stop system is standard.
The PTO stop is a plug that can be pulled from the rear of the tractor externally via a cord.
Once the plug has been pulled from its socket, the PTO can only be re-activated from within the cabin.
Another safety feature involves the seat in the cabin.
If the driver gets off the seat while the tractor is moving, the tractor will automatically slow down to 4km/h and then engage the handbrake.