A Massey Ferguson® Fan for Life

Darren Littleton relies on Massey Ferguson tractors, both today’s high-horsepower models and the classics of yesteryear.

By Tharran E. Gaines | Photos By Charles Riedel

When Bob and Darren Littleton purchased a lightly used Massey Ferguson® 8690 tractor approximately a year ago, the father-son team came full circle. Darren’s grandfather had once owned a Massey Ferguson dealership and his father was once 100% Massey. Yet, says Darren, “our family kind of drifted away” from the brand due, in large part, to hard times in the 1980s.

Bob and Darren Littleton with their full line of AGCO equipment.

Bob and Darren Littleton with their full line of AGCO equipment.

That separation, though, didn’t last. “Ever since AGCO acquired the brand … we’d toyed with the idea of going back to Massey Ferguson,” Darren relates. The reunion came to be in April 2014, when the Littletons located that MF8690 with only 500 hours on it at Kuhn Equipment LLC in Arthur, Ill.

“Massey Ferguson has come a long way,” says Bob. “We just love that [CVT] transmission. Even though about 90% of our fields are in a three-mile radius, we have one farm that is 25 miles away, and that 31-mph road speed is wonderful.”

“The fuel savings have been great too,” adds Darren, who depends on Green Hills Ag, Inc. in Brookfield, Mo., and Harpster Equipment Inc. in Moberly, Mo., for parts and service.

“Once you learn to use the Dyna-VT™ transmission in combination with the DTM [Dynamic Tractor Management] system, fuel economy is unbelievable. We’ve used the tractor on everything from the vertical tillage tool to the grain cart during harvest.”

The MF8690 isn’t the only Massey Ferguson tractor that Darren has an interest in. Over the past few years, he has also been adding a number of vintage models to his tractor collection, most of which revolve around the Massey Ferguson row-crop models from the 1960s and ‘70s.

“I have four different MF1100 models, as well as an MF1150 that is in the paint shop,” he says. “In addition, I have an 1135 that I sometimes use to cut hay, and I have an MF1155 with only 3,300 hours that is really sharp,” he adds. “I still put about 50 hours a year on that one when I’m pulling one of the planters.

“Some people like to fish and some people like to play golf,” he concludes. “For me, it’s taking off to someplace like Illinois or Indiana to attend another farm auction that has a classic Massey Ferguson tractor on the sale bill.”

<< See the full story, “When The Levee Breaks”