Product history

The forage harvester.

Right from the start, the JAGUAR forage harvester impressed with outstanding performance and a unique overall design concept. CLAAS once again proved its ability to develop machinery with a consistent focus on practical requirements in the forage harvester segment.

Product history

The forage harvester.

Right from the start, the JAGUAR forage harvester impressed with outstanding performance and a unique overall design concept. CLAAS once again proved its ability to develop machinery with a consistent focus on practical requirements in the forage harvester segment.

The JAGUAR story

The JAGUAR forage harvester is one of the most successful and best-known CLAAS products. Originally made only in the trailed version (pulled by a tractor), in 1973, increased maize cultivation led to CLAAS introducing its first self-propelled forage harvester on the market. This machine has proven a success ever since, with numerous further enhancements, across many different markets.

1973 – JAGUAR 60 SF

The rapid rise in maize cultivation in the late 1960s created a demand for increasingly powerful harvesting equipment. The forage harvesting equipment available at the time, consisting mainly of hitched and trailed devices, was rapidly exhausting its productivity reserves. CLAAS was quick to recognise the potential of this segment and, in June 1973, it started manufacturing a high-performance self-propelled forage harvester, the JAGUAR 60 SF. A total of 33 of these self-propelled harvesters with double-row maize headers were series-produced and sold in the 1972/73 financial year, as the first year of production. The JAGUAR 60 SF combined modules from the trailed JAGUAR 60 with proven combine harvester modules, which was how it was possible to present the new product after such a short development period. The harvesting productivity of the JAGUAR 60 SF was considerably higher than that of trailed forage harvesters, thanks to the 120-hp mounted engine. The self-propelled harvester was also faster and more agile for chopping operations in the maize field, and it made lane chopping possible. The dual-row maize header and pick-up attachment were also taken over unchanged from the trailed JAGUAR. Production of the JAGUAR 60 SF continued until 1976, with a total of more than 500 units being made over that time.

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1975 – JAGUAR 80 SF

The new large self-propelled forage harvester, the JAGUAR 80 SF, had a significantly wider chopping drum than the JAGUAR 60 SF. An entirely new feature was the ability to separate the feeder and chopping cylinder housing. This provided optimum access to the chopping drum and intake auger for servicing. Another new feature was the blower for rapid transfer of the forage crop to the transport wagon. The new CLAAS automatic steering system was deployed for the first time in the JAGUAR 80 SF. Sensor brackets attached to the maize header scanned the maize rows and relayed the impulses to the steering wheels to automatically steer the machine. This innovation made the driver’s task much easier in difficult harvesting conditions, resulting in an overall increase in the machine’s work rate. Competitors also started fitting the CLAAS automatic steering system to their forage harvesters. Initially, the JAGUAR 80 SF was fitted with a 157-kW (213-hp) engine. Mounted attachments included two-row and four-row maize headers, a maize picker, a 3.3-m direct cut attachment and the pick-up attachment.

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1977 – JAGUAR 70 SF

With the JAGUAR 80 SF, CLAAS had come up with an outstandingly productive self-propelled forage harvester. Well before it went into production, it became clear that the JAGUAR 60 SF would not be able to hold its position on the market as a “little brother” to the new harvester. As the successor model to the JAGUAR 60 SF, CLAAS therefore introduced the JAGUAR 70 SF on the market for the 1976/77 season, as a self-propelled forage harvester with a work rate of up to 75 t per hour. The chopping drum width was increased, and there was a choice of 110-kW (150-hp) and 129-kW (175-hp) engines. The ability to separate the feeder and cutting cylinder housings was taken over from the JAGUAR 80 SF. To provide increased ground clearance in the transport position, the harvesting attachments, including the chopper unit, pivoted around the cutting cylinder shaft.

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1983 – JAGUAR 690, 680, 685, 675

With the introduction of the JAGUAR 600 series in the 1982/83 season, CLAAS set new standards in forage harvesting technology. The market also appreciated the contemporary design look, with the roof surface sloping back to the rear. The machine itself impressed with a range of significant innovations. The metal detector was ideally placed in the bottom compression roller. Above the chopping cylinder, the maize grains were cracked by the CORN CRACKER, comprising two rollers. The accelerator in the discharge chute sped the forage crop on its way to the transport wagon. The spacious cab taken over from the combine harvester, mounted on damper bearings, provided an even more ergonomic work environment for the driver. The ground speed control lever was also used to control the harvesting attachments, the chopper unit and the chute flap. The possibility of separating the feeder and chopping cylinder housing, and pivoting them around the chopping cylinder shaft, was retained, and indeed continued to point the way forward. This was also the market debut of the six-row maize header. The maximum permitted transport width requirement of three metres was met by folding up the side sections. Even competitors bought large numbers of these harvesting attachments from CLAAS Saulgau. Unit sales of almost 7,000 machines made CLAAS the market leader, with a market share of more than 50 percent in Europe.

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1988 – JAGUAR 695 SL, 695 MEGA, 690 SL, 685 SL, 682 SL, 682 S

For the 1987/88 season, CLAAS introduced the JAGUAR 695 SL, 690 SL and 685 SL self-propelled machines, as a new generation of high-performing forage harvesters. The most striking feature of the new SL family was the cab, which offered an even more user-friendly environment for the driver. The engines ranged from 260 kW (354 hp) to 158 kW (215 hp). The JAGUAR 682 SL and 682 S models were fitted with 158-kW (215-hp) engines. The new V cutting cylinders with their staggered bisected knives provided a more uniform forage crop flow and lower clamping forces in the accelerator. To boost crop flow, the cylinder rotation speed and number of V cylinder knives were increased. Other new features included harvesting attachments for whole plant silage and ground ear maize.

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1994 – JAGUAR 880, 860, 840, 820, 800 SL, 800 S

The JAGUAR 800 model series had an advance premiere with a small preproduction run in 1993. From the 1994 season, the new forage harvester generation was then available to all customers. The new series was fitted with engines delivering 228 kW (310 hp) to 354 kW (481 hp). Installed behind the steering axle crosswise to the direction of travel, simple direct-drive systems provided an optimum supply of cooling air and easy access to the inside of the machine. In preparation for harvesting grass silage, for example, the CORN CRACKER could simply be rolled to the rear and replaced with a grass shaft. This innovative configuration has set the trend for the state-of-the-art forage harvesters on the market today. Thanks to the favourable drive axle loading, it became possible for the first time to attach eight-row maize headers. The exceptional visual design of the new CLAAS forage harvesters inspired confidence at first glance. The spacious cab featured a curved front windscreen and sloping roof, for the first time providing two seats, for the driver and a passenger when required. Central lubrication was also included. An accelerator was placed directly behind the CORN CRACKER to speed up the forage crop flow.

A special product in the JAGUAR 800 series, produced only in small numbers, was the FIELD SHUTTLE, introduced in 1997. It was based on the JAGUAR 880, and available in a trailer version (FS 880 T) and a container version (FS 880 C). The innovative logistic concept made it possible to hitch conventional truck trailers to a JAGUAR forage harvester, or to mount a container. In this case, the crop transfer process took place at the end of the field, to avoid the transport vehicles having to drive onto the field.

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2001 – JAGUAR 900, 890, 870, 850, 830

A significant power milestone was passed in 2001, with 445 kW (605 hp) under the bonnet of the JAGUAR 900. Even the smallest model in the family delivered a highly impressive 236 kW (321 hp). The proven basic structure and visual design were taken over essentially unchanged from the predecessor family, with some new features such as mudguards above the wheels steering the machine, and the contemporary tailgate design. The driver workstation was completely redesigned, however. All functions were easily set and monitored from the terminal. For example, the cutting cylinder sharpening process could be controlled from the driver’s seat, and the optimum shear bar setting could be selected. To ensure that the JAGUAR could be on the spot, ready to start work, at the same time as the tractor and transport vehicles, as from the 2003 season, there was a fast travel SPEEDSTAR version available by request, with a top speed of 40 km/h. The top speed of the PROFISTAR version of the JAGUAR was 20 km/h. The legendary GREEN EYE, launched on the market in 2006, delivered an astounding 623 hp, along with numerous innovations for even greater efficiency and user convenience. Along with the usual harvesting attachments, the 800 series introduced the row-independent maize headers RU 450 and RU 600. And the DIRECT DISC 520 was incorporated in the product range, for mowing and chopping whole-plant silage in a single step.

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2008 – JAGUAR 980, 970, 960, 950, 940, 930

The new JAGUAR 900 series introduced in the 2008 season offered outstanding performance capacity and supreme chop quality. CLAAS once again proved its ability to develop machinery with a consistent focus on practical requirements in the forage harvester segment. The new series featured a wide spectrum of machines, a new intelligent engine control system, continuous moisture measurement, a further enhanced CEBIS Comfort terminal and a new V-MAX cutting cylinder.

The AUTO-FILL automatic filling system in the JAGUAR 900 was awarded a gold medal at Agritechnica 2009. This system provides a simpler, automatically controlled wagon-filling process, significantly reducing the operator's workload.

The CLAAS JAGUAR received another prestigious award at AGRITECHNICA 2011, as “Machine of the Year”. Among the features cited by the judges were the new V8 and V12 MAN engines, and the new DYNAMIC POWER control system, for delivering power as and when required. Since 2013, the 900 series has also included high-power engine variants meeting the Tier 4i exhaust emissions standard.

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2014 – JAGUAR 870, 860, 850, 840

More productivity, more variety, more comfort, more output – these have been the attributes embodying the new JAGUAR 800 series since 2014. With the new Mercedes-Benz engines, and with the aid of intelligent CLAAS POWER SYSTEMS (CPS), the 800 series meets the rigorous Stage IIIB (Tier 4i) exhaust emissions standard. A further innovation of note is the redesigned air ducting for greater cooling efficiency. The air leaving the radiator is routed over the engine, and discharged virtually unobstructed from the generously dimensioned air outlet in the rear of the JAGUAR. This enables the machine to keep operating reliably even at extremely high outside temperatures. The DYNAMIC POWER automatic engine power control system maintains maximum efficiency and throughput in both part-load and full-load ranges, by automatically increasing or reducing engine output. This allows fuel savings of up to 10.6 percent. This means the driver is always operating in the most efficient engine speed range, and with greater comfort than ever before in the redesigned cab.

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2017 – JAGUAR 980, 970, 960, 950, 940, 930 (type 498)

For the 2017 financial year, CLAAS introduced an enhanced variant of the tried and true JAGUAR 900 series of forage harvesters, with a raft of new features. These include an infinitely variable attachment drive, a further enhanced crop flow system, a new chassis design concept, and the CLAAS AUTO FILL system for zero-wastage side and rear loading. The new JAGUAR 900 series (type 498) is available alongside the established JAGUAR 800 series (type 496) and the existing JAGUAR 900 series (type 497).

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