Here’s a new thing I learned today: vineyards are often too narrow for traditional tractors. Here’s another thing: New Holland and Pininfarina are working together on a tractor to solve that.
Designed specifically for wine-growing regions where high-quality grapes are grown, such as Champagne, Medoc, and Burgundy, the Straddle Tractor Concept will work in areas where rows of vines are grown less than half a meter (1.6 feet) apart on steep slopes.
Normally, grapes grown in these areas are simply picked by hand and most of the maintenance work done on the vines is done by a tractor that travels over the rows. For its tractor, though, Pininfarina developed a futuristic design that centers around high comfort, high safety, and the possibility of electric propulsion thanks to New Holland’s “Clean Energy Leader” strategy.
Appropriately, the tractor is designed to look like a champagne flute (tall, wide at the top, tapering down at the bottom), as a reference to the region it hopes to serve. Fortunately, the shape also offers plenty of visibility to the operator thanks to an abundance of glass. A rotating seat and large door, meanwhile, offer easy entry and exit. Wood trim inside the cabin gives it a luxurious feel and is a reference to the oak barrels used to age wine.
“Our ground-breaking straddle tractor concept offers a glimpse into the future that premium wine growers with narrow, high-value vineyards can aspire to,” said Carlo Lambro, New Holland brand president. “It is the result of New Holland’s long history of excellence in vineyards across the world, combined with the inspired innovation of legendary design house Pininfarina.”
Unveiled as part of the SITEVI 2021 wine, olive, and fruit farming expo, the concept is a hint at one of the directions that New Holland hopes to move toward in the near future.