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Oct 31, 2013

Hardi-Evrard

Sprayers Equipped with the EcoDrive™ System

In France, HARDI-EVRARD is specialised in the development and production of trailed sprayers for France (METEOR Range) and self-propelled sprayers for the entire HARDI group (ALPHA evo and SARITOR Ranges). The company has approximately 1,050 employees worldwide, of which 575 in Denmark and 180 in France.

As a matter of interest, the history of the company started in 1957 when Mr Hartvig Jensen founded the company. He was a horticulturist and was in need of a sprayer. A few years later, after continuous expansion, the company moved to new production buildings outside Copenhagen.

Soon, HARDI sprayers were no longer only sold in Denmark but throughout Europe and the company continues its global expansion to this day.

 

Christophe BENOIT, HARDI-EVRARD self-propelled sprayer Product Manager interviewed by Poclain Hydraulics.

 

Poclain Hydraulics: When did your cooperative ventures with Poclain Hydraulics begin?

Christophe Benoit: The collaboration between HARDI-EVRARD and Poclain Hydraulics started almost 10 years ago. The ties that we have forged throughout this ten-year period now enable us to have a collaboration between our respective very high-quality application engineers on new projects. We have highly valuable support in order to optimise our transmission systems.

 

PH: At Innov'agri 2013, the Alpha Evo self-propelled sprayer's engines were developed and it also received a new EcoDrive™ transmission system made by Poclain: what was the added value of this solution for your machine? 

CB: Regulatory obligations with regard to anti-pollution standards for engines (Stage IIIB) impose significant reductions in fuel consumption and therefore CO2 emissions. These new standards make it mandatory for all machine manufacturers to develop ever more advanced and specialised engines, which usually results in a significant increase in the price of such engines.

 

The Poclain Hydraulics EcoDrive™ system makes it possible to optimise the management of the engine and transmission without this resulting in substantial additional costs.

The new performance levels provided by EcoDrive™, in conjunction with the Stage IIIB requirements, enable us to control the additional cost generated for our new engines.

So, the customer is a winner twice over: The price of the machine is still acceptable and the end customer is able to better control their fuel consumption.

With regard to our agricultural customers, the Poclain Hydraulics solution has enabled us to enhance our offer by not only providing a new engine but also the possibility to better manage their machine's transmission.

 

PH: Have you had feedback from your customers who have tested this solution?

CB: The actual delivery of the first machines is starting at the end of 2013, but the feedback that we have following the numerous dynamic tests conducted by our teams shows that the drive is much smoother and at the same time much quieter in the cabin since EcoDrive™ makes it possible to reduce the engine speed. So, comfort in the driving seat is considerably improved. Once again, technology for technology's sake is pointless if it is not intended to provide real benefits to customers.

 

PH: Have you added other Poclain Hydraulics solutions to this EcoDrive™?

CB: Actually, we have added two Poclain Hydraulics anti-skid systems that we connect to an electronic anti-skid system that we have been selling for a few years.

 

PH: What is the benefit of combining both these systems?

CB: It enables us to offer an inexpensive system to customers who do not really need a permanent anti-skid system on all four wheels. More specifically, this new device makes it possible to unlock the axles (separation of the front axle from the back axle) and can be activated on request by simply pressing on a pedal. Some farmers do not need to have this anti-skid system permanently, so the ability to offer a solution that is truly tailored to their need is a real "plus".

 

PH: Is this device used on other HARDI-EVRARD machines?

CB: EcoDrive™ is effectively implemented on other machines from our range. In particular, it is implemented on a part of the SARITOR range, which is not yet in Stage IIIB: a range of machines intended for the American and South-African markets where it has been extremely successful.  This machine is also sold in Australia.