AT THE CASE IH global headquarters at Racine, Wisc., January 1, 2017,
kicked off a year of celebration, commemorating the 175th anniversary of founder Jerome Increase Case’s founding of Racine Threshing
Machine Works to manufacture a revolutionary machine to speed the
separation of grain during harvest.
“It’s amazing to see just how far the farming industry — and our
company — have come in the last 175 years,” said Andreas Klauser, Case
IH president, in launching the year-long observance. “That’s especially
true, given the fact that we are stronger today than ever before”.
The company’s beginnings are closely linked with those of the
American economy, as pioneers moved west and new farms were established to feed the growing population centers in the east. Case went on
to manufacture the first steam engine tractor in 1869; although it was
wheel-mounted, it was drawn by horses and used only to power other
machines. In 1876, Case built the first self-propelled traction steam engine, and as steam engines quickly replaced horses for threshing, by
1886 the J.I. Case Threshing Machine Company became the world’s largest producer of steam engines.
In 1902, five companies merged to form the International Harvester Company in Chicago, a deal personally brokered by J.P. Morgan,
the American banker who dominated corporate finance and industrial
consolidation at the time. The company produced its first combine harvester in 1915 and, in 1923, introduced the Farmall, the world’s first row
International Harvester sold more than 5 million Farmall tractors,
and in 1977, launched the unique single rotor Axial-Flow rotary combine, a machine that revolutionized the farming industry with its simplicity, grain quality, grain savings, crop adaptability, matched capacity,
and high resale value. Axial-Flow combines still set the standard for harvesting performance today.
Case IH was formed in 1985 when J.I. Case acquired the agricultural
division of International Harvester, uniting the legacies of Case and IH in
a single brand. Its first product, the Magnum tractor, with horsepower
ranging from 160 to 240, was introduced in 1987 and became the first
tractor to win the Industrial Design Excellence Award from the Industrial
Designers Society of America. The Magnum tractor continues to be one
of the most recognizable Case IH products, and more than 150,000 have
The revolutionary Quadtrac tractor, launched in 1996, established
a new benchmark that remains unmatched. The line now includes
the most powerful series production tractor in the world, the Steiger
Quadtrac 620, with up to 692 peak horsepower to deliver the greatest
Since the turn of the 20th century, when Case IH reintroduced the
Farmall brand, the company’s technical innovations have continued:
▶ Case IH Advanced Farming Systems (AFS) have been at the forefront of precision farming for more than two decades, giving farmers the
ability to maximize productivity and profitability by using satellite technology.
▶ In 2009, Case IH launched Continuously Variable Transmission (CV T)
technology, enabling its CVT tractors to deliver an op
ti-mum combination of power and fuel efficiency.
▶ Patented Efficient Power engine technologies
enable Case IH equipment to meet the latest Stage IV
(Tier 4 B/Final) emission standards without complex
exhaust gas recirculation systems or particulate filters.
▶ In 2015, the Magnum 380 CVT was voted Tractor of the Year at the EIMA International Exhibition in
Bologna, Italy. That year, Case IH also launched the
Rowtrac CVT tractor, which combines the individual
benefits of tracked and wheeled tractors.
▶ Case IH’s award-winning performance continued in 2015 when the new Optum CVT tractor was
named Machine of the Year 2016 at Agritechnica. The
judges were impressed by its stunning “power pack”
design, excellent power-to-weight ratios, maneuverability, efficiency, and reliability.
▶ The Optum 300 CVT achieved the accolade of
Tractor of the Year at the 2016 EIMA International
“The Case IH 175th anniversary is a testament to many years of
quality, perseverance and progress,” Klauser says. “It’s also an occasion
to reflect on our guiding principles of innovative engineering, efficient
power and agronomic Design — a philosophy that will continue into
“I am certain that if Mr. Case could see the company today he would
instantly recognize that the core values that he championed those
many years ago are still at the heart of everything we do. I have no
doubt he would approve of the fact that we involve customers in every
new range, model, and product update through our Customer Driven
Product Design. But what he would think of the Autonomous Concept
Vehicle we can only guess!”
Case IH celebrates 175 years of agriculture