Claas has acquired a minority shareholding of Dutch start-up robot manufacturer AgXeed BV.
Claas said its aim is to co-operate on the development and commercialisation of autonomous agricultural machines. The
German manufacturer feels that by collaborating with and investing in AgXeed, it marks a logical step towards future-proof technologies.
AgXeed is currently trialling its autonomous AgBot in the fields.
The firm has said its aim is for this autonomous field robot with diesel-electric drive, wheels or crawler tracks up to 156hp and standard three-point linkage, to assist farmers with a wide range of tasks in the future.
Adjustable track width
The unit comes with a weight of 6t (without ballast) and optional crawler tracks with belt widths from 300mm to 910mm.
It features an adjustable track width, load-sensing hydraulics and a linkage with a lift capacity of up to 8t.
An electric PTO, independent of the engine speed, and external high-voltage connections are also available.
The electric equipment includes all the technology required for hazard and obstacle detection, in addition to an RTK steering system.
"Our involvement provides Claas with access to innovative technologies in a familiar market segment and complements our own expertise in autonomy and robotics,” explained Claas group CEO Thomas Böck.
"In turn, AgXeed benefits from our extensive expertise and networks in many areas, such as data transfer, interfaces and drivetrain solutions.
"It's a win-win situation in our view, and one reason why we decided to invest in this start-up company, as well as the fact that the targeted AgXeed technologies are in an advanced state of development.
"This solution offers farmers and contractors concrete economic added value, and what’s more, it will soon be available."
AgBot, together with the associated software solutions and platforms, is expected to be launched in 2022. It is understood it will be launched in various sizes and performance classes.