Love them or hate them, John Deere tractors are a giant in the industry. However, they’re not number one. That glorious position belongs to Mahindra, which is another tractor manufacturer based in India. John Deere sits at position number 2, sandwiched neatly between Mahindra and Massey Ferguson.
Despite that, John Deere is number one in several other areas. First, John Deere tops almost every meaningful list in terms of reliability, which is the number one factor in answering those who question the worth of such expensive tractors.
John Deere tractors also spend a lot of time in the number one lists at an individual level. For instance, the 2022 Tractor of the Year is a John Deere 7R 350 AutoPowr. Not only that, but John Deere also made the number one spot for the best utility tractor of the year, with the 6120M AutoPowr.
When you’re sitting down and trying to determine whether or not the John Deere tractor that you have your eye on is worth the shocking sticker price, there are several things that you need to consider, all of which we will cover below.
History of John Deere Tractors
Why does John Deere’s history matter when you’re looking at a John Deere that came off the assembly line only a few months ago?
History matters whether you’re looking at a John Deere tractor or a new pencil. History answers a ton of questions, after all, some of which you may not have considered from a historical perspective.
- How long has John Deere been around?
- How long has John Deere manufactured tractors?
- What is John Deere’s record in terms of tractor reliability?
- What’s in the name, John Deere?
John Deere has been in the business of manufacturing agricultural machines and tools since 1836, when they produced their first steel plow.
It has everything to do with your decision because no company has survived for nearly two centuries by being a moderately dependable or otherwise shady company.
If two centuries is not enough to prove the indelible impact and excellence that comes with a name, then you might as well go out and grab a generic tractor and hope for the best.
John Deere’s first tractor was the John Deere Model D, manufactured and presented to the public for the first time in 1923.
That’s one hundred years of manufacturing tractors. There is a lot of weight behind that because not many companies out there have been innovating and perfecting the same type of machinery for a hundred years.
John Deere’s record in reliability is incredible, and it’s part of the reason that they are an industry giant today. Of course, they wouldn’t be here if their tractors didn’t frequently find their way onto best tractors of the year lists.
The name, John Deere, is two centuries of experience in providing the best tools and machinery for the Agricultural industry. Even if you hate John Deere tractors, it’s hard not to respect 200 years.
Are John Deere Tractors Easy to Operate?
Working a farm can be incredibly arduous on the best days, mainly because there is often so much to do in a single day. But then, you wake up before the sun touches the horizon, do it repeatedly every day, and work as hard as you did yesterday.
The last thing anyone wants is to have to relearn how to use a tractor because John Deere went and made it so complicated that you have to have a dual math and engineering degree to even have an idea of how to operate it.
Fortunately, John Deere tractors are very easy to operate. Control placement is the name of the game, and John Deere engineers have a knack for knowing where everything needs to go to improve convenience and ease of use.
Some of John Deere’s more complicated transmissions, such as the hydrostatic transmission system, require more than one pedal. However, John Deere designed them so that the pedals are lined up side by side, easy to access, and switch back and forth.
Many tractor manufacturers feel it’s a good idea to hide pedals within layers of other pedals, making things a real headache to operate. John Deere innovates with the latest, cutting-edge technology that is converted into simplified operation controls.
One of the most significant indicators of the value of something is how much it depreciates the first time you start it up. For example, most John Deere tractors depreciate by a full quarter after a single year, which is usually when the biggest dip occurs, and around 45% in five years.
That is a pretty good rate in terms of value lost over time. Some depreciate much slower. For instance, a 2015 Series 2 John Deere cost $16,200 and depreciates to a cost of $15,500 in 2019. That’s what you call reliability.
Some depreciate more than others, such as the John Deere 1023E, which loses roughly 47% of its value over five years. However, if you look at a comparable Kubota, like the B2650, you’re looking at a 62% depreciation in value over the same 5-year period.
Depreciation values are all over the place when you are dealing with a massive amount of tractors, and John Deere manufactures a ton of tractors. However, on average, John Deere meets and, in many cases, exceeds the industry standards in reliability and value over time.
Premium Price for Premium Features
There’s no doubt that you will pay a little more money than a comparable, competing tractor if you go with a John Deere. That bit of extra you spend is based on name alone. However, you are also paying a premium price for premium features.
John Deere not only manufactures a tractor that is reliable and easy to operate, but they also focus on comfort and style. As a result, sitting in a John Deere tractor is generally a comfortable experience.
John Deere also focuses on improving parts by using different materials than you would expect. For instance, instead of metal hoods that get viciously hot and tend to rust, John Deere goes with polycarbonate, which lasts much longer when dealing with exposure and time.
John Deere has also found ways to help you multitask by engineering simple, one-touch operation mechanics that take care of complicated tasks far easier than the competition. John Deere is also pretty stringent regarding safety protocols and innovations.
This includes multiple features incorporated into mower decks, RIO (Reverse Implementation Option) switches, ROPS (Roll Over Protection Systems), and more.
Not only is the operation of a John Deere tractor simplified, but safety mechanisms are also thoughtfully integrated throughout as well.
In other words, you get exactly what you pay for with a John Deere tractor.
John Deere tractors are certainly worth the money, especially considering the high level of reliability and longevity that comes with one. These tractors are top-notch, and because of that, you’re going to pay a premium price.
On the bright side, if you fork over the extra cash for a John Deere tractor, you won’t have to do it again for a very long time.