Since the M7001 was introduced in 2014, Kubota’s engineers have been constantly fettling the tractors’ design, most recently resulting in the third generation, M7003, which was duly unveiled at the end of 2019. We find out whether the M7153 represents an improvement on its predecessor

Although Kubota is a dab hand at constructing smaller tractors, it’s the M7003 that attracts the most attention in the ag sector. And it’s easy to understand why. Built in France, the trio of tractor models spans 95kW/130hp to 125kW/170hp with the choice of a powershift or CVT, so the line-up ticks a lot of boxes for a popular segment of the market.

Third generation

Visually, our featured M7153 model looks no different to the M7151, which came under the tractor test spotlight in 2017, or the M7152 that was sold in between. Yet there have been several improvements to the M7153 design, including a Stage V compliant engine, modified front axle, new powershift transmission and smaller but noteworthy details such as the automatic climate control system.

The engine is still Kubota’s long-stroke V6108. To step up to meet Stage V, the common-rail injection has been upgraded to 2,500 bar and the service interval for the particulate filter has been increased — from 3,000 hours to 6,000 hours — which will help reduce maintenance costs. Rated speed has been reined back from 2,200rpm to 2,100rpm.

With enough changed to pique our interest, we packed the M7153 off to the DLG for some further investigating. Dyno results showed the boosted maximum output from the new Kubota was slightly higher than from its firstgeneration predecessor (109.6kW/147.0hp instead of 105.7kW/141.7hp). However, at rated speed with the boost knocked off, the new tractor only pushed 88.8kW/119.1hp to the rear stub; that’s 8.0kW10.7hp fewer ponies than the results from our 10/2017 profi test — a difference that’s not really felt in pto work

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