Caterpillar Inc. -- Company History

As with the other tractor and manufacturing companies, theoutbreak of war prevented new designs from being developed as alleffort was focused on manufacturing enough existing equipment to meetthe demand of a war-mobilized economy. But at the end of the war, Massey-Harriscame out with a series of new designs. From this point until the mergerwith Ferguson in 1953, a wide range of models covering all the majorsegments was introduced, ranging from the 10.3 H.P. Pony through themuch more substantial 52 H.P. MH 55. The most popular by far of thenew models was the mid-range MH 44, which was the market which Massey-Harrishad the greatest strength in. Making up the new line would be thePony, MH 20, MH 22, MH 30, MH 44, and MH 55, which was offered in a variety of configurations, with the model numbers suggesting the relative power of the machine. The MH 744 was the name under which the MH 44 was produced and marketed in Europe. The MH 21, 23, andthe limited run I-162 were released to revise the line in the early1950's.

Le Tourneau-Westinghouse and Caterpillar Tractor Company

The Tech Center is the home of Caterpillar’s Product Development and Global ..

development of the Caterpillar D7 tractor

As development in America was marching forward with the 600-900series and the revived 601-901 line, England was moving ahead withrevisions of their own. The Fordson New Major had been very successful,but that tractor was rather large, and the lack of a small tractor forthose with lesser needs was hurting Ford's position in Europe. Toaddress this weakness in the product line, Ford developed the Dextain 1957, which featured a Perkins three cylinder diesel engine.

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In 1938, just two years after the production of the firstFerguson tractors had started, the deal fell through as Brown wentahead with his changes over Ferguson's objection and Ferguson wentto Dearborn to visit with Henry Ford. Armed with one of the machineshe was building with Brown in England, the two came to their handshakeagreement by which Ford would produce a tractor using the FergusonSystem and Ferguson, once again, would market the machines. In 1939,after a hastened piece of development work, the first Ford tractor usingthe new implement system was launched as the Ford 9N.

Caterpillar was formed in 1925 by the merger of the Best Gas Tractor Company ..

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The low end of the Massey Harris line was seriously hurt bythe Ferguson System-equipped tractors that Ford, and later Fergusonhimself was producing and marketing. It was clear that the systemwas better than anything the company could offer, and efforts weremade to develop a technology to respond to this threat. The Depth-O-Maticand other attempts to bridge this gap were unsuccessful, however. It isfortunate for Massey-Harris that Ferguson was looking to sell his tractorbusiness, together with his patents and technology, or sales would surelyhave continued to suffer.

HOLT CAT – A Heritage of Innovation

The last 22 pages of the book are color photographs of a fully restored caterpillar D7 heavy tractor that is equipped with a LeTourneau XD7 bulldozer blade and uses a rear mounted LeTourneau R7 power control unit. The walk-around photos show detail of many parts of the restored D7 and will be a handy reference for model builders.

1892: Stockton Wheel is incorporated as Holt Manufacturing Co

But Ferguson was getting older at this point, and he had neverliked dealing with the details of production, instead preferring theengineering and marketing aspects of the business. He looked for a company that could produce his tractors and carry his name into thefuture, and that company was Massey-Harris. In 1953, in a deal worth$16 million, Massey-Harris acquired the Ferguson company and renamedthemselves Massey-Harris-Ferguson, which was shortened to Massey-Ferguson.A new titan in the agricultural equipment market had been formed.


When Ford broke with Ferguson in America following the deathof Henry Ford, launching the 8N independently, Ferguson filed alawsuit that would drag out for years. The issues revolvedaround the former handshake agreement and existing Ferguson patents being violated by the new 8N. Meanwhile, Ferguson had a largedistribution company in America, and to keep it afloat he importedhis TE-20 tractors for sale through the distributors, and made plans toproduce tractors for the American market. These would be referencedas TO machines, whereas his European designs were TE. Launching theTO-20, based entirely on the TE-20 in 1948, the tractors soon gainedconsiderable success and together with the TO-30, launched in 1951, which offered 30 H.P.,were very successful in gaining market share against Ford.