It was just a year ago that TF1's TV show AutoMoto pitched a Fendt 828 Vario against a Porsche 911 GT3 putting them through various agility tests. The experiment blew all bets out of the water with the tractor stamping out its supremacy and coming out victorious in every single test. With more than 1.8 million viewers watching live and several hundreds of thousands catching up on-demand on the MyTF1 site, we can safely say that this story got everyone talking.
Behind every action there is an idea, but before that comes an observation. We have to deduce from this that, although the technology used daily by our customers is well known and recognised in the farming community, there is little awareness among the general public. The classic image of a tractor jolting and chugging its way around the country roads is still rife in today's media landscape. The idea is to break down this image to prove to as many people as possible that agriculture lies at the heart of our future economic challenges, and more importantly, to revive the reputation of the tool that best characterises our profession; the tractor.
THE FILM SHOOT IN A FEW FIGURES
Of the hundreds ideas to popularise our technology, the one that stands out is the concept of comparisons. It uses benchmarks which everyone is familiar with from their cars and, where possible, standards in performance and technology. After countless failed attempts at contacting the major national TV channels, TF1's curiosity was finally aroused by the project and they agreed to meet us early January 2014 to hear more about it. After this initial contact, the project was truly on track, with a surprising idea for a comparison test that defied all convention.
Indeed, at first sight, the Fendt Vario 828 and the Porsche 911 GT3 have very little in common; with the exception of their Germanic origin and their premium positioning, and yet... Fendt and the TF1 AutoMoto team got together for this on-screen clash of the titans (...of the car and tractor worlds).
Photoshoot in the very special atmosphere of the main hangar at the Brienne le Château aerodrome.
Comfortable on camera, the 828 completes the slalom by combining the reverse driving position and VarioGuide auto guidance.
Shooting the final scene with the AutoMoto film crew.
Shot on February 12th and 13th at the Brienne le Château aerodrome in Aube, it took no less than two days of intense work to get the photo and video footage needed for the final 4 min 30 sec VT. Entirely devoted to static shots, the first day was blessed with brief bright spells to help shoot the opening sequences to introduce the tractor and the supercar. The runway of the airfield was closed for the occasion and it was here that the prestigious driver, Anthony Beltoise, was able to measure up to the Fendt Vario 828 at the wheel of the Porsche. Although the favourite to win, Anthony Beltoise could not compete against the tractor in any of the day's tests. Beyond the Fendt brand, this story has also highlighted, and for the first time to a wider audience, the technological expertise of an entire industry and has hopefully prompted a career choice among many to fill the 3,500 positions in the machinery sector.