Tractors not only stack hay bales, drag trailers and plough fields, but travel to the South Pole, save lifeboats from the storm-tossed sea, and look for unexploded bombs! They can be mini or maxi, three-wheels, four-wheels or even eight-wheels, and some even move as fast as a car.
Ever wanted to learn more about tractors? Check out these fantastic facts below:
1. Before there were tractors, steam engines were relied on for power farm machinery. They did not move very fast – the 1914 Clayton & Shuttleworth Dorothy could only make a top speed of 5mph.
2. In 1958, the explorer Sir Edmund Hillary and a small crew travelled the perilous 1,200 miles to the South Pole on a series of Ferguson tractors. The journey took them more than 80 days!
3. In Japan there is a mini four-wheel-drive tractor called a Kubota L3200. It has a 31-horsepower engine and can be fitted with a front bucket and backhoe loader.
4. The BAE Terrier is a massive, bomb-proof digger that has more in common with a tank than a tractor. It can be driven by remote control at almost 50mph.
5. Some tractors can save lives! The Talus MB-H is a specialist vehicle used to haul British Lifeboats from the sea, even in rough conditions. It can work comfortably in up to 8 feet of water.
6. The world’s biggest tractor is called Big Bud 747. It was produced in the USA in 1978. Its tires are 8 feet in diameter and it has a 16-cylinder Detroit Diesel engine. Only one was ever made.
Want to know more? These DK books are packed with a whole farm-load of fantastic tractors.