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AGCO 4wd Tractor Heritage
77 Years of 4 Wheel Power

With roots that are firmly established in the North American farm equipment industry, AGCO Corporation has a heritage that reaches as far back as the mid-1800s through many of its brands.

Its direct lineage is from the Allis-Chalmers brand name. AGCO got its start in 1990 with the purchase of Deutz Allis Corporation from German-based Kloeckner-Humboldt-Deutz AG. KHD, in turn, had purchased the Allis-Chalmers agricultural equipment business five years earlier. Since that time, AGCO, the industry consolidators, has become a worldwide farm machinery company through market growth and strategic acquisitions. Today, with sales of approximately $3 billion.   AGCO brand products are sold in more than 140 countries by over 8,000 dealerships and markets 22 brands with over a millennium of combined heritage. 

 4wd tractors have a 76 year heritage in the AGCO Corporation.  AGCO traces its tractor roots back to the Hart-Parr Oil-Pull tractors.  Hart-Parr became part of the Oliver company in the 1920's. Also in the 1920's  Massey-Harris purchased Wallis tractors makers of the first 4wd.  In the 1950's Massey-Harris joined with Henry Ferguson to form Massey-Ferguson.  In the 1960's Oliver became part of the White Motor Company which later acquired Minneapolis-Moline and Cockshutt.  Oliver Green, Minneapolis-Moline Yellow and Cockshutt Red were merged in 1975 under White Silver.  During the 1980's White joined forces with the well known implement company New Idea under Allied-Products.  In 1986 the long time orange brand Allis-Chalmers was purchased by Deutz-Fhar and became Deutz-Allis.  In 1990 Deutz-Allis was purchased by the newly formed Allis-Gleaner Company (AGCO).  AGCO began selling AGCO-Allis tractors and Gleaner Combines.  In 1993 AGCO purchased the White-New Idea brand.  In 1994 AGCO acquired the Massey-Ferguson brand along with McConnel-Marc 4wds.  In 2002 AGCO purchased the Caterpillar Challenger tracked tractor line.  Today AGCO offers the industries largest horse power tractors under the Challenger name. 


AGCO's Challenger line continues to advance as the new articulated MT965 4wd prepares for its debut.  This big 4wd returns AGCO to the wheeled 4wd tractor market as the big artics race to the 600 hp mark. 

Caterpillar Prototype History

In 2002, AGCO acquired Caterpillar Inc.'s agricultural equipment business, primarily the design, assembly and marketing of their Challenger track tractors.  Since 1987, when Caterpillar introduced the world’s first farm tractor equipped with rubber tracks, the Challenger name has stood for awesome power, cutting-edge technology and amazing versatility. Today, Caterpillar dealers continue their dedication to the farming community with a full line of agricultural products, many of which are specifically designed and built by AGCO to carry the Challenger logo.  Challengers largest tractor the MT865 lead the industry at 500 hp in 2002.  In 2005 Challenger increased its horse power lead with the new MT875B rated at 575hp.

In 1994, AGCO purchased McConnell tractors leading to the development of the AGCOSTAR articulated tractor line. AGCO purchased the worldwide holdings of Massey Ferguson in the same year. AGCO-Star 4wds were produced from 1995-2002. The 360 hp 8360 and 425 hp 8425 AGCO-Star 4wds were available with both Cummins and Detroit-Diesel engines through 1998. From 1999-2002 only Cummins engines were available.  The Challenger MT800 tracked tractors took over high horse power in the AGCO line in 2002.  The AGCO-Star was sold in the White brands silver and the Massey-Ferguson brands red. 

The McConnell Manufacturing Company Inc. formed in 1961. McConnell in the early 1960's produced potato equipment. During the next two decades McConnell produced, the Ontario Grain Drill, the Hesston Potato Harvester line, Chisholm Ryder Company (makers of combines, bean harvesters and grape harvesters). McConnell purchased and then resold the Marshall Tractor Company (formerly Leyland Tractor )  In 1988, McConnell acquired the rights to the Massey-Ferguson 4000 Series 4WD Tractors. With upgraded power and options, these tractors became the Massey-Ferguson 5000 Series.  In 1993 the 360 hp 900 and 425 hp 1000 McConnell - Marc 4WD Tractors replaced the MF name. 

In 1953 Massey-Harris and Harry Ferguson merged to form Massey-Harris-Ferguson Limited. Later this was changed to "Massey-Ferguson". In 1958 the company acquired F. Perkins Ltd of England who was the leading diesel engine producer at that time. This gave the MF company a ready source for diesel engines. In 1970 Massey-Ferguson entered the articulated 4wd market with the MF 1200 4wd.  MF introduced its big 4000 4wds in 1980 and remained in the 4wd market through 1992.  The last MF 4wd, the 5200  was the first 4wd in the 1990's to reach 425 hp. 

Massey Ferguson 4wd History

In 1901, the "Allis-Chalmers" company was formed by merging the Edward P. Allis Co., Fraser and Chalmers Company. By 1979 they had grown into a $2 billion corporation and were one of the important machinery manufacturers in the United States.  Allis-Chalmers entered the articulated 4wd market in 1973 with 4wds built by Steiger.  In 1976 Allis-Chalmers released its own 4wds known as the Super Beasts.  Allis-Chalmers offered a second generation of 4wds in 1982 and ended production in 1986 under the Deutz-Allis brand.  


In 1974 White Motor Company the parent company of Oliver, Minneapolis-Moline and Cockshutt merged the brands under the name WHITE and the color silver.  The White 4-150 introduced the Field Boss tractor line and was sold along with Oliver and Minneapolis-Moline 2wd tractors in 1974.  In 1975 White introduced its new White Farm Equipment brand across the tractor and implement lines.  White 4wds were offered by WFE through 1987.

White 4wd History

The Oliver Farm Equipment Corporation was formed in 1929 after the merger of the Oliver Chilled Plow Company, the Hart-Parr Company, Nichols & Shepard Company and the American Seeding Machine Company. It was later known as the Oliver Corporation. Oliver entered the 4wd market in 1971 with the 2455 and 2655 4wds. The Oliver 4wds were identical to the Minneapolis A4T-1400 and A4T-1600 4wds.  Like the Minneapolis-Moline and White Plainsman the Oliver 4wd became one under the new  White Farm Equipment brand in 1974.

Oliver 4wd History

The Minneapolis-Moline company was formed in 1929 after a merger between the Moline Implement Company, the Minneapolis Threshing Machine Company and the Minneapolis Steel & Machinery Company. Minneapolis-Moline was acquired by the White Motor Company in 1963.  The first Minneapolis-Moline 4wd the A4T-1400 was introduced in 1969 .  Minneapolis-Moline 4wds departed from the M-M gold paint scheme to a red.  The only yellow M-M 4wds produced were made for a select few dealers in Minnesota.  M-M 4wds were produced through 1972.  From 1974 the A4T-1600 4wd was offered as the White Plains man. In 1974 the red A4T was replaced by the White 4-150. 

Minneapolis-Moline 4wd History

The Massey-Harris company was formed in 1891. It was the combination of Massey Manufacturing Company of Toronto and A. Harris Son & Company Ltd., both of Ontario, Canada. Both of these companies had on their own been industry leaders in the production of implements. Massey Harris General Purpose Four Wheel Drive debuted in the late 1920's after the purchase of the Wallis tractor line.   The MH General Purpose was a rigid frame tractor with 4 drive wheels. This style tractor would latter inspire today's articulated 4wd tractors.

Photographs from AGCO, White, Allis-Chalmers, Massey-Ferguson Sales Literature for Identification Purposes, from Dan Adamson, Richard Keesey, Jason Hasert and John Schomberg. These pictures may not be copied from Big Tractor Power.com 




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