New Holland launched its TM range of tractors in late 1999, as a direct replacement for the 60 series. The line-up consisted of the TM115, TM125, TM135, TM150 and TM165 and proved to be highly popular, with a variety of transmission and suspension configurations, as well as a whole host of optional extras.
The TM range featured three facelifts over its eight-year production run before being finally phased out, replaced by the 6000 series.
Early TMs are easily recognisable, thanks to the white lettering against the black backdrop on the side of the bonnet. These earlier tractors also featured an engine and chassis painted in grey – the same as the 60 series tractors they replaced and in the middle of 2000, the lighter ‘Ford blue’ was replaced with the darker ‘New Holland blue’. In January of 2002, the engine and chassis were painted black ahead of the impending TM facelift.
More to the point, in the mix of all the grey and black, New Holland released a bells and whistles, top spec TM in Sept 2001 – The TM165 Ultra. Powered by New Holland’s 7.5l turbocharged PowerStar engine, the TM165 Utra does exactly what it says on the tin – producing a 165hp. Rear linkage capacity is rated at a massive 10t, along with a three-speed, soft start PTO. Thanks to closed centre hydraulics, 178l of oil flow per minute is on tap.
The TM165 Ultra is fitted with New Holland’s top spec Power Command fully powershift transmission, allowing the operator to progress through all 18F/6R gears uninterrupted. Power Command also has programmable functions, providing a programmable auto shift function for field work.
Further high-end standard specification for the TM Ultra included TerraGlide front axle suspension and ComfortRide cab suspension, as well as a top-end Sears driver seat which offered a high range of adjustment. The tractor was also fitted with high 42” solid rear wheel rims and solid front rims. A rear bar axle offered adjustment to the track width of the tractor, along with auto four-wheel drive and differential lock.
Furthermore, the TerraGlide front axle was built-in with disc brakes, a first for New Holland. Engine chassis rails were also fitted to provide extra strength to the tractor frame.
Somewhat of a stop-gap tractor, the TM165 Ultra was produced for a limited time from September 2001 until late 2002, when the long wheel base TM175 and TM190 were released and the TM165 was dropped from the line-up – making the high spec tractor scarce and highly sought-after.