Escorts shows driverless tractor prototype

The details will be released later, says Escorts, but we can reveal that the Indian tractor maker recently showed its dealers the prototype of India’s first autonomous tractor.

by Steven Vale

26 Sep 2018

Based on a Farmtrac tractor, the autonomous concept unveiled at a venue in New Delhi recently is one result of cooperation with seven companies including AVL (electric driveline technology), Trimble (sensors, controls and automatic e-steering) and Samvardhana Motherson (smart cab technology). Wabco is responsible for vehicle controls and automation, Microsoft the cloud and AI technology with Bosch taking care of emissions.

The Indian tractor maker expects the partnership with these technology giants will ultimately enable the company to develop a range of farm machines with electric transmissions, autonomous applications, remote vehicle management, data-based soil and crop management, and sensor based guided farm applications.

Readers may recall that Escorts showed the prototype of what is believed to be India’s first electric tractor at Agritechnica, last November. Called the Farmtrac 26E, the 26hp diesel engine in the compact tractor was swapped for a lithium-ion battery.

The message at the time was this is just the beginning and the plan is to develop a complete range of electric and diesel/electric tractors from 50 to 110hp by 2020.