This is a custom-built Suzuki GS1000-Powered “Mini Tractor” designed for use in tractor pulling competition. It’s currently being offered for sale on eBay in complete but currently not-running condition.
Tractor pulling has been called both “the world’s heaviest motorsport” and the “the world’s most powerful motorsport” due to the fact that the highly-modified tractors can produce thousands of horsepower, and haul up to 65,000 lbs (29,000 kgs).
The Origins Of Tractor Pulling
Tractor pulling’s origins can be traced back to the late 19th and early 20th centuries, when horse pulling was popular in agricultural communities. Farmers would compete to determine whose horses could pull the most weight.
As mechanization became more prevalent, tractors began to replace horses on farms. Inevitably, farmers started to hold informal competitions to determine whose tractor was the most powerful.
After World War II, tractor pulling events began to grow in popularity, particularly in the Midwestern United States. Many of these early events were organized by local agricultural organizations or community groups.
Initial competitions used a deadweight sled. However, this method was soon replaced by a “weight transfer sled,” which became more difficult to pull as it moved down the track.
How Modern Tractor Pulling Works
Tractors used in these competitions are not typical farm tractors. Many are highly modified or even custom-built for the sport – they’re designed to generate enormous amounts of horsepower and torque.
Tractors are attached to the sled, and the goal is to pull it as far as possible down a straight dirt track. The distance each tractor pulls the sled is measured, and the tractor that pulls the sled the furthest distance wins.
Above Video: Tractor Pulling has been called both the “the world’s heaviest motorsport” and the “the world’s most powerful motorsport” – some of these vehicle are producing thousands of horsepower and thousands of lb ft of torque.
The main piece of equipment, aside from the tractor, is the sled. This isn’t a sled in the traditional sense, but a heavy piece of machinery equipped with a weight-transfer box. As the tractor pulls the sled down the track, the weight moves forward on the sled, transferring more and more weight to the sled’s skids, making it progressively harder to pull.
Tractor pulling competitions often have different classes based on the specifications of the tractors. Classes can be determined by factors like engine type, weight, or the number of engines. This ensures that similarly capable tractors compete against one another.
Tractor pulling is popular in many parts of the world, particularly in rural areas of the United States, Australia, New Zealand, and Europe. Events range from local fairs to national and international championships.
Over the years, as with many motorsports, technology and modifications have played a big role. Many of the tractors are equipped with turbochargers, superchargers, and sometimes even multiple engines to produce the necessary power to compete in a given class.
The Suzuki GS1000-Powered Mini Tractor Shown Here
The vehicle you see here is a custom-built pulling tractor, that is a tractor designed to be used in tractor pulling competition. It’s designed to resemble a mini fire truck, with bright red paint, flashing red lights, as well as “Fire” and Backdraft” decals.
Power is sent from the front-mounted engine to the rear wheels which are shod with wide paddle-tread tires specifically for use on deep sand or mud. The fuel tank is mounted ahead of the engine to help with weight distribution, and the driver sits in the rear over the axle to help provide weight for traction.
Above Video: This is a short clip of the vehicle shown in this article completing a pull. As you can hear the engines on these vehicles get worked exceptionally hard.
There’s a YouTube video of this pulling tractor working above, as you can hear from the audio the engine is being worked hard and hitting the limiter for the whole pull, fairly standard for this kind of motorsport. The vehicle is now listed for sale on eBay out of Lutz, Florida with the bidding currently sitting at just a few hundred dollars.
It’s clear from the description that the vehicle isn’t currently running, but the engine does turn over. If the new owner wanted to compete with it it would be wise to budget for a full engine and transmission rebuild as pulling tractor engines get worked exceedingly hard.
If you’d like to read more about this unusual vehicle or place a bid you can visit the listing here.
Images courtesy of eBay Motors
Articles that Ben has written have been covered on CNN, Popular Mechanics, Smithsonian Magazine, Road & Track Magazine, the official Pinterest blog, the official eBay Motors blog, BuzzFeed, Autoweek Magazine, Wired Magazine, Autoblog, Gear Patrol, Jalopnik, The Verge, and many more.
Silodrome was founded by Ben back in 2010, in the years since the site has grown to become a world leader in the alternative and vintage motoring sector, with well over a million monthly readers from around the world and many hundreds of thousands of followers on social media.