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FARM CLASSICS: The high-spec German-built Fendt Vario 716

December 15th, 2021 10:05 PM

By Southern Star Team

While not pioneered by Fendt, Fendt were the first, and continue to be the only manufacturer, to offer the a CVT gearbox as standard.

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FENDT tractors have a long-standing reputation as a premium tractor brand.

Excellent build quality, high specification, with excellent levels of reliability commanded a high price tag for the German tractors, making them previously somewhat of a rarity in the farming landscape. However, as the 21st century dawned, Fendt released a new tractor range with an all-new transmission, which put the brand in the spotlight for high-end farming applications.

The 700 Vario range was launched by Fendt in 1998, spanning four models ranging from 115-160hp. The straight line styling of the previous Favorit models was replaced by a new curvy looking tractor featuring a new engine, transmission and hydraulics.

Power comes from a 24 valve 5.7l Deutz engine-especially designed for the Vario 700 series – which sits on rubber mounts in the chassis.

However, it is the ‘Vario’ CVT (continuously variable transmission) that is the tractor’s trump card. Initially appearing in the larger 926 tractors in 1995, Fendt quickly realised the potential of their Vario transmission.

While not pioneered by Fendt, Fendt were the first, and continue to be the only manufacturer, to offer the a CVT gearbox as standard across all of its tractor ranges.

A seamless and stepless transmission, the Vario combines the benefits of powershift with variable speed control, moving gradually from full hydrostatic drive to mechanical drive as speed increases.

With two ranges, the tractor can be operated at any ground speed between 0-50kph, allowing the driver to find the optimum working speed for every task.

Sitting in the cab of the any Fendt can be a daunting experience for most.

The cab of the first range of Vario 700 tractors is a pleasant working space with bright grey panelling, while large windows and sloping nose cone providing great levels of visibility, although it often receives criticism for being cramped as well as a lack of storage space.

The driver is met with the Variotronic interface which includes a joystick, control screen and operating console.

The armrest-mounted joystick controls all major functions of the tractor, including speed, direction, cruise control, spool valves front and rear linkage and PTO.

The control screen allows the operator to further fine tune the engine, gearbox and hydraulics to achieve optimal performance

A very high level of specification is standard on these tractors including front linkage and PTO, air brakes, 3 speed PTO, 50kph road speed as well as front and cab suspension.

Powerful and sophisticated, clean second hand examples continue to command high resale prices.

VITAL STATISTICS

Tractor

Fendt Vario 716

Horsepower

160hp

Engine

Deutz 5.7l

Years of manufacture

1998-2004

• Contact Peter at [email protected] or see Instagram @flashphotoscork.

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