Initially launched in the popular 540/65 R30 size, it was joined by 440/65 R 24, 440/65 R 28, 540/65 R 34 and 600/65 R 34 early in 2005. There is now a 540/65R34 and a high speed version of the biggest size, 650/65R38. These have been launched to accommodate the new 248 hp Fastrac8250. Rarely for a Fastrac, that means there are smaller tyres on the front, like a conventional tractor. The new JCB is capable of lifting 10,000 kilograms on the rear linkage. The larger tyre sizes are said to allow for an increased load rating whilst minimising soil compaction thanks to the larger footprint.
Commenting on the new tyres, Barry Coleman, Firestone’s marketing manager said, “JCB Landpower asked us to help them develop these tyres for the new Fastrac, which is principally a field tractor, but with the Fastrac’s trademark road-going abilities. Pressure on costs for farmers means that the demands for profitability from tractors is increasing; increasing horsepower inevitably puts more pressure on the tyres. A lesser tyre would struggle with the demands of such powerful equipment and many of the benefits could be potentially lost. There is often a trade-off in terms of key performance characteristics such as traction, low compaction, wear life, self-cleaning ability, road handling (even at speed) and ride/noise comfort. The R9000 Evo has been proven to offer the optimal balance of these qualities and that is why JCB continues to specify Firestone as standard fitment on a number of their Fastracs.”
The R9000 Evo is a 65 series tyre designed for higher power tractors. All sizes are intended for operation at up to 50 km/h, with the same load capacity as at 40 km/h. A ‘D’ rated version of the 540/65 R 30 with a 65 km/h rating is also available, suitable for high speed tractors such as the 2000 and 3000 series Fastracs. The R9000 Evo range can be fitted to standard design 24, 28, 30, 34 and 38-inch rims.