Bobcat showcases new line of compact tractors at 2020 National Farm Machinery Show

Bobcat has leapt into the tractor game with a competitive newly minted line of sub-compact and compact utility tractors.

At the 2020 National Farm Machinery Show in Louisville, Bobcat displayed its innovations in the tractor world. Released in September of 2019, the company’s lineup has 15 tractors and a full range of factory-installed implements, including backhoes and frontend loaders. For the largest models, there are four cab options and two for the mid-range tractors.

“We offer a full range from 21 to 58 horsepower,” said James Crouch, Senior Product Manager of the compact tractors division. “This covers a whole range of utility tractors that are very versatile for dairy, poultry, and other light farm uses.”

He also said Bobcat offers four transmission types, which offers flexibility for both cost and tasks.

One big perk, Crouch noted, is Bobcat’s firmly established distribution network. This means that the tractors are serviced by all official company retailers, who also carry a full line of parts. Bobcat has 550 stores nationwide.

The compact tractor model number provides valuable insight on each machine’s structure and power. The first two digits represent the tractor’s frame size, or whether it is a 1000, 2000, 4000 or 5000 platform machine. For example, in CT2XXX, the number “2” indicates that the tractor in question is a 2000-platform machine. The digit following that first numeral indicates whether the tractor has an open canopy (ROPs) or a deluxe cab. While a CT50XX has an open canopy, a CT55XX offers a deluxe cab. The final two digits in the model number represent the engine horsepower of each tractor. For example, the CT4055 offers a 55 horsepower engine while the CT4058 has a 58 horsepower engine.

Key Features and Benefits

Each machine is designed to provide high performance and value to the industry:

Standard four-wheel drive: Every Bobcat tractor model comes standard with four-wheel drive. Customers can easily engage four-wheel drive whenever the work demands it to provide superior power and traction in even the toughest working conditions.

Maximum maneuverability: Bobcat compact equipment is known for maneuverability. Compact tractors are no exception. A tight turning radius of as little as 96.4 inches is essential for effective mowing, tilling, and operating in close proximity to barns, fences, trees, and other barriers.

Select Bobcat tractors also offer steering brakes — models CT2025 and up — to give customers greater control when working between buildings, in pens and barns, or around other obstacles. This feature improves maneuverability by helping maintain a tighter turning radius — nearly pivoting the tractor on the inside wheel.

Standard quick-attach mounting system: Time-saving features like the Bobcat quick attach mounting system come standard across all platforms to save customers valuable time and money. This feature enables customers to easily exchange front- and mid-mounted attachments for multiple jobs — providing greater value and versatility to any property.

Attachments and implements: Bobcat compact tractors are the perfect tool for trimming down hours of work thanks to the versatile lineup of compatible attachments and implements:

  • Attachments: front-end loader, backhoe and mid-mount mower
  • Implements: box blade, angle blade, tine rake, rotary cutter, tiller, snowblower, finish mower, post hole digger (auger), rear ballast box and quick hitch
  • Three-Point Hitch: The three-point hitch is essential to a tractor’s versatility. With the standard three-point hitch, operators can perform a large number of tasks, or replace work previously done by hand, by attaching and removing implements and attachments with ease.

Rear PTO: Bobcat compact tractors stay on top of any project with powerful rear power take-off (PTO). This feature is essential for transferring power from the engine to any rotary implement – keeping users moving regardless of the chore.

Tire options: Tires have a large impact on a tractor’s traction, flotation, ground disturbance, wear and overall performance. Bobcat tractors are available with three different types of tires to match the requirements of your work: Agricultural tires are designed for towing heavy loads or pulling implements, turf tires are ideal for providing excellent traction with minimal damage to lawns or finished surfaces and industrial tires offer maximum traction and outstanding protection against long-time wear or punctures.

Transmission types: With multiple types to choose from, there’s a transmission option for any user. Bobcat compact tractors are designed with one of four different transmission types, depending on the tractor’s frame size and model:

  • Manual shift transmission is an economical and reliable option that changes gears and ranges by stopping and clutching – perfect for jobs that require a constant speed, such as mowing or spraying.
  • Synchro shift transmission is a manual option that provides the greatest ease of use – allowing users to clutch and shift between all speeds and ranges as they travel.
  • Hydrostatic transmission (HST) provides maximum ease of use and is ideal for front-end loader work. HST also allows the operator to quickly and easily change direction from forward to reverse and back.
  • Electric hydrostatic transmission (E-HST) boasts all the same benefits of HST, however it also allows operators to maintain their uphill speed without travel pedal adjustments.

Uptime and serviceability: Bobcat compact tractors are designed with features that enhance uptime and ensure the machine is easy to service. With one-sided maintenance, users have easy access to engine fluid fills and filters from one side of the tractor. This keeps tractors in prime condition with minimal effort. The metal hood on select models also works to protect a user’s uptime by shielding the engine and components from dirt and debris while providing greater visibility from the operator station. A heavy-duty brush guard protects the front of the machine from debris, branches and other obstacles. In addition to superior uptime and serviceability features, each tractor is backed by an extensive dealer network and a 24-month, 1,500-hour warranty.

Comfort features: A Bobcat compact tractor’s superior comfort features turn a long day, and a long list of projects, into no problem for operators. These features include a suspension seat for absorbing bumps and creating an overall smoother ride, a rubber deck mat to dampen vibrations through the floor and a comfortable operator station with ergonomic controls to enable hours of comfortable and confident work. All of the controls, gauges and buttons on Bobcat compact tractors are thoughtfully laid out with operator ease of use in mind. The illuminated dashboard allows users to easily operate and monitor performance in any light condition, so operators can finish a long day’s work in comfort.

Tractor Parts Buyer’s Guide

Tractors are designed to work hard and help you get the job done. However, that doesn’t mean that things can’t break or wear out. Whether you’ve got a broken water pump or a worn-out gasket, you need to your tractor working again. When you’re looking for Tractor Parts, the vendor in the Buyers Guides can help you find what you need to get back up running.

Having the right tractor parts on hand or at least quickly available can mean a lot to a landowner or farmer. Tractors, by their very design are hard working machines. When you work a tractor hard, things do wear out or even break and that means lost time and potentially lost revenue.

The good news is you can easily find a lot of tractor parts online and have them delivered right to your door. Whether that means repair parts you should always have on had, or parts you only buy when things break, you can find most anything you need in or Tractor Parts guide.

(Lead photo by pajtica/

Tractor PTO Parts

The PTO is the lifeblood of many of the most essential tractor implements. If your PTO isn’t working…neither are you. Whatever parts you need for your PTO, you can find them in the links below. What kind of PTO parts are available online? Here’s a small sampling to give you an idea:

Tractor Alternators

Replacing an alternator is a relatively painless job and one many tractor owners choose to do themselves. Tractor parts like alternators eventually wear and stop working, just like the do in your car or truck. Alternators are mated to your engine and when the engine is running, the alternator charges your battery and helps power any electrical systems on the tractor. When your alternator stops working, the battery gets drained and all the vehicle’s electrical components will decide to take a nap. The good news is you can find an alternator to fit your tractor from a variety of vendors, along with some associated parts.

Tractor Batteries

Just like your car or truck, your tractor battery needs to be properly maintained or else you might have to replace it. If your tractor sits for long periods of time, using a trickle charger or battery tender can save you a serious headache when it comes time to put your tractor to work again. Even when your battery is not in use, it the charge will slowly deplete. A trickle charger basically works by not allowing the battery to deplete its charge when its sitting idle for a long time by slowly adding charge to the battery. Of course, sometimes you just need a new battery. Fortunately, you can order one very easily online.

Tractor Bearings

When it comes to stocking up on tractor parts, we’d suggest you keep a good collection of tractor bearings on hand. Bearings wear out over time and fresh bearings just make things run smoother and quieter. You can also maintain your currently bearings by cleaning out the grease with a solvent and packing them with fresh grease.

Tractor Brake Parts

While you will never travel at highway speeds with your tractor, that doesn’t mean you don’t need brakes work well. Tractor brakes can be replaced or repaired at home with the right tools and a little knowhow. You can pick up all of the brake parts you need with some online sleuthing, but we’ve already done that for you.

Tractor Clutch Parts

If the clutch on your tractor needs some serious TLC, we’ve got you covered. Whether you need a whole new clutch kit or just a clutch disc for your tractor, check out the link below to find what you need.

Tractor Exhaust Parts

While we are not sure you need to keep these tractor parts around, if your tractor exhaust ever gets damaged or breaks, you can find everything you need below. From entire muffler and exhaust kits to exhaust silencers and retainer/fastener kits, check out the link below.

Tractor Filters

Keeping extra oil filers, air filters and fuel filters around for your tractor makes a lot of sense. These don’t last forever and it takes very little time to make a quick replacement when the time comes. Our links below will lead you in the right direction.

Tractor Gaskets

To make sure your tractor’s engine is running with maximum efficiency or the oil pan isn’t leaking all over the place, you need gaskets. Rubber gaskets can dry out and crack, rendering them useless over time. Keep a spare or two around in case of emergency so you can get back to work as quickly as possible.

Tractor Hydraulics

Hydraulics make like a whole lot easier and more functional, so when putting together a shopping list of tractor parts, don’t forget the hydraulics. From oil to tie rod cylinders to hose replacements to hydraulic pumps, these are some parts you should have available.

Tractor Ignition and Starter Parts

Is your ignition causing you problems? Will your tractor not start like it should? If so, it might be time to look into ordering some ignition and starter parts for your tractor. In the links below, you’ll fine ignition coils, ignition switches, and starters for a variety of tractors.

Tractor Pump Parts

Your tractor relies on a variety of pumps to take care of any number of duties. Pumps can break down or cause problems over time, but pretty much anything is fixable or replaceable if you take the time to learn how. Check out the link below to water pumps, fuel injection pumps, power steering pumps, or parts to repair any or all of them.

Tractor Radiator Parts

Tractors work really hard, which generated a lot of heat. Your tractor’s radiator makes sure everything stays cool enough to work properly and can prevent some seriously expensive damage when things really heat up. You can find everything from complete radiators for many different tractors to an assortment of hoses and other parts for radiators in the link below.

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5 of the Best Tractor Implements from Tractor Supply Company

Get more out of your tractor with these accessories

Having the right tool for the job is essential and that is no different when it comes to your tractor. When it comes time to find the perfect accessory for your tractor, Tractor Supply Company offers a host of affordable alternatives to the ones you will find directly from your tractor’s manufacturer.

Here are five of the best tractor implements that you can drive home with today from your local Tractor Supply Company or even order them directly from

Rotary Tiller

Rotary Tiller

Whether Tilling a garden or even tilling up fresh ground to plant a bright lawn, you will need a tool that doesn’t break the bank or your back. Hooking your 25hp tractor to this Countyline rotary tiller will make all of the headaches in the joys of gardening disappear. Also, with the adjustable runners turning up soil from one inch to depths of up to four inches is possible. Using this same tiller to turn the soil, the food plots at our hunting camp are now ready for seeding. MSRP $1499

Box Blade

Box Blade

There are many uses for the standard box blade. The tines will dig into the soil and the box will even the playing field, so to speak, by retaining the soil or mulch as it levels out. We use our box blade across our weathered gravel road to smooth out the ruts and sometimes maybe to work up a nice level pile of mulch or topsoil. Either way this is a good investment if you are looking for that next big tool. MSRP $799.99

Landscape Rake

Landscape Rake

Recently our hunting property had been cleared of dead or dying pine trees. This left acres of small brush and branches as well as very uneven terrain from the tractors that worked these sections. We were able to use the landscape rake to gather the brush into several piles and burn off the debris. The 6 ft. rotating landscape rake allowed us to push and pull the debris into manageable areas while knocking down some of the ruts left by the tractor. MSRP $649.99

Hitch Mounted Sprayer

Hitch Mounted Sprayer

Getting rid of unwanted overgrowth or even plant eating bugs can be a difficult task. Using a sprayer with the correct pesticides or herbicides inside can make the job easier. If you have a good 20-60hp tractor and need a reliable three-point hitch mountable sprayer, then maybe consider this one. This 60-gallon sprayer runs off the tractor’s PTO and has a pressure of up to 150psi. MSRP $869.99

Seed Planter

Seed Planter

Working a garden by hand that is less than an acre or so is rewarding, but as the acreage begins to grow you might consider tools to help get those seeds in the ground quicker. One item you may consider is a pull behind planter like this corn and bean planter. You can adjust the row width from 14 inches to 36 and the hoppers hold up to 15 lbs of seed. The Ground-driven 13-inch pneumatic tires get the seed out and into your soil and the adjustable openings on the seed box allows you to drop light or heavy depending on the product. MSRP $799.99

Cheap Tractor Cleaning Supplies

Regular tractor washing can pay dividends in the long run

One of the most thankless jobs of a Tractor owner’s weekly routine is cleaning the money maker in the barn. Getting the week’s work finished is generally all most consider when looking at the workload, but if you do not clean up the mess after the work is finished that pile of mess just gets bigger. Cleaning your tractor is very important not only from an aesthetics or appearance standpoint, but you can also identify problems that may be coming and stop them before it turns into something much worse. With this in mind let us take a look at some affordable products that will help you get the grime of a tough week off of possibly your most valuable asset.



One of the cheapest yet surprisingly effective degreasers on the market can be found at any Dollar Tree store or online and it is called LA’s Totally Awesome degreaser. This can be purchased in the gallon size or spray bottles and a case of six one-gallon bottles will only set you back $6 dollars plus tax. That’s a whole lot of cleaning power for six bucks!

Scrub Brushes

Scrub Brushes

Should you decide to put a little effort into the washing of your tractor and need a helping hand, the Dip & Wash scrub brush with a long handle is a great buy. Getting into those tight areas or maybe those places that are a little longer distance than your arms can reach makes the long handle dip and wash brush perfect!

Spray Nozzle

Spray Nozzle

Getting a good spray nozzle for the water hose is an investment in cleanliness for the tractor owner. Getting one that is free of gimmicks and that can withstand abuse is the key, but better than that how about something that is cheap? Try this metal pistol shaped spray nozzle. Its under $5 and it has proven itself worth many times over that at our shop!

Spray Nozzle with Suds Attachment

Spray Nozzle with Suds Attachment

A spray nozzle with a suds attachment is a great invention of recent years and I can say it makes a great tool for those who love taking the stress out of a cleaning job. Just pour in some of your best foaming cleaner, spray the big tractor down and hose off the wear and tear of a hard week on the ranch. I’d say it probably doesn’t get much better than this!

Water Hose

Water Hose

If your budget is so tight that no budget describes it best, then the easiest way to get to the bottom of a messy tractor is to simply use the water hose and spray off the grime. Cleaning off dust or even mud is made easy with a good source of pressured water. Be sure to clean with a little forethought, though, as you do not want to push mounds of grit and grime into places with that water hose that cannot easily be cleaned out later.

Black Friday Tractor Deals

With Thanksgiving here, that means it’s officially deal season in the retail world. We combed through as many Black Friday Tractor deals we could find that tractor owners might find interesting and put five of the best ones here. Happy shopping.

Dremel 3000 is having an incredible deal on the Dremel 3ooo Rotary Tool Kit for today only and you can pick one up for just $49. This particular kit comes with a host of cutting and grinding accessories – perfect for those small jobs that can cause big problems if you don’t stay on top of them.

Click here to learn more. (more…)

Check out these Amazon Prime Day Deals for Tractor Owners

(By pajtica/

We found an assortment of Amazon Prime Day deals that tractor owners or any garage mechanic can appreciate.

Click here to learn more about Amazon Prime. (more…)

2014 Kubota Grand L6060 Cab Review

Exploring Kubota's flagship Grand L60 Series model

The Kubota Grand L60 Series is comprised of six tractor models that range from the 37-horsepower L3560 to the 62-horsepower L6060. The L60 Series is a replacement for the L40 Series it replaces. Loyal readers will recall the Kubota L4240 we tested back in March of 2012 and how impressed we were at the “deluxeness” of the package. That generation tractor met EPA Interim Tier 4 standards, but now with Final Tier 4 (FT4) requirements a reality, we were curious as to how the new engines performed as well as what other improvements/changes had been made.

The L6060 is powered by a Kubota four cylinder 148.5 ci  E-TVCS liquid-cooled common-rail indirect injected turbo diesel that uses exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) and a diesel particulate filter (DPF) muffler to achieve those tightened emissions standards. Power take off (PTO) horsepower is 53 at 2700 engine rpm. Fuel capacity is 11.2 gallons, which seems a little low compared to some of the competition – a price paid perhaps for that nice 20 percent increase in cab space.

2014 Kubota Grand L6060 Front Left

Though the Grand L60 Series comes with three choices of how to get that power to the ground: 12 speed Glide Shift Transmission (GST), 8F x 8R Fully Synchronized Shuttle Transmission (FST), and Hydrostatic Transmission (HST) Plus, the L6060 only comes with the latter hydro unit. But what a transmission it is. With three ranges and two additional speeds fingertip selectable on the steering column (Auto H-DS) within each range, the L6060 effectively gives the operator six ranges. This means infinite control over the 0-10.1 / 0-16.8 (L/H) mph forward and 0-9.1 / 0-15.2 (L/H) mph reverse speed ranges. Control is by a modified treadle pedal that gives the operator a choice of standard toe/heel operation; or for those so inclined, the ability to go forward by pushing down with the toe and reversing by slipping the toe under the pedal and lifting up. Either way, the system offers well-modulated directional control.

COMPARISON: Read our review of the 2014 Kubota M7060 Open Station

Hydraulics run through a twin pump system that flows 4.7 gpm to power steering needs and 9.4 gpm to implement requirements (14.1 gpm total). This gives the Cat I/II three-point hitch (3PH) a lift capacity of 2980 lbs at the industry standard of 24” behind lift point. Position control is standard fare, so an implement can be returned to the exact operator-selectable point each and every time. Draft control is an option. Lower link arms telescope for ease of implement attachment as do the outboard stabilizers. Standard is a rear 540 rpm PTO, with a 2000 rpm mid PTO as an option.

2014 Kubota Grand L6060 Working

Climb up into the cab (both doors swing wide for easy access, though steps are located only on the left side) and the abovementioned increase in space is immediately evident. And not only is the cab larger, but the seat has been repositioned rearward to give even more legroom. As expected, the seat is a deluxe high-back suspension design that swivels 12 degrees in each direction. And for those wanting more plush, an air-ride equipped seat is available as an option.

COMPARISON: Read our review of the 2014 Massey Ferguson 6615

2014 Kubota Grand L6060 Air Ride Seat

Another area of improvement is the levers, which now have a high-quality automotive feel. While the previous generation controls didn’t lack for functionality or ergonomics, the new setup is really that much nicer – including the loader joystick which is thoroughly integrated into the right hand console. And integrated into the joystick is a Throttle-Up switch which raises the engine rpm at the push of a button. The amount of bump is operator programmable and set on the IntelliPanel (more on this later) and since the bump is on-demand only, fuel is saved. The HVAC system can be adjusted to draw on external air or to re-circulate cabin air and is a dual level system that can maintain a 7-14-degree cabin differential. Other niceties are the adjustable arm rests, tilt wheel, cup holder, storage bin/tray, behind seat power supply access and slick PTO switch that the operator pushes and turns to engage and then taps to disengage.

With the electronics we’ve barely touched on so far, the IntelliPanel display puts full status readout a glance away and full control over the L6060s vast systems at the operator’s fingertips. With a display that reads Welcome upon startup and in standard configuration displays engine hours, trip meter, fuel consumption, PTO speed, HST info, DPF status and ground speed, the IntelliPanel can be customized to operator needs. Menu changes are accomplished using a dash mounted touch pad.

2014 Kubota Grand L6060 HST Controls

Along with the already mentioned Throttle-Up and Auto H-DS, the L6060 comes with Auto Throttle Advance where the linking of the HST pedal and engine throttle are just a fingertip button away, HST Response Control (six gradients left of median to gradual and six gradients right of median to quick), HST Mode that customizes Stall Guard and Auto H-DS combinations to task needs and automotive-style cruise control. Though all the electronics may seem daunting at first, everything is intuitive and easily learned. And at the end of the day, the operator will have had more control than ever before possible over the number one cost past tractor purchase – fuel – and precise input as to how the tractor performs.

Other upgrades over the L40 Series include improved legroom, FT4 compliance, increased HP, improved lever positioning and easier behind the seat power supply access. As well, an all-new one piece hood combines the front grille for easier access and a two-tier headlamp setup that makes for better night visibility.

2014 Kubota Grand L6060 Backhoe

Our test tractor was equipped with Kubota’s LA1055 loader. Able to lift 2361 lbs to a lift height of 112.7”, the LA1055 is well matched to the capabilities of the L6060. Standard bucket is a 72” square back design with other options available, including 36” and 42” pallet forks, and a bale spear. Two backhoes are available – the BH77 with a 7’6” dig depth and the BH92 with a 9’2” dig depth. Each model can be equipped with a hydraulic thumb.

COMPARISON: Read our review of the 2012 Mahindra 6110 Shuttle Cab

Measuring 126.4” in length and 67.3” wide and riding on a 75.4” wheelbase, the 4376 lb L6060 has a turning radius of 9.2’ with brakes applied. Tire options include Galaxy Turf, LSW Turf, Turf (R3), Industrial (R4) and Ag (R1).

2014 Kubota Grand L6060 Profile

So, are the improvements to the L60 Series enough to offset the added cost of FT4 compliance? That is a difficult question to answer. For those that think not, few if any L40 Series machines are left in the pipeline. That alone may determine the outcome. In our opinion, anyone in the market for a high horsepower compact utility tractor (CUT) would do well to include the L6060 in their short list.

2012 Kioti CS2410 HST Review

Kioti enters the ultracompetitive subcompact tractor market in a big way

Subcompact tractors are great machines for homeowners with acreage, hobby farmers, horse owners, contractors with the need to get into tight spaces and just about anyone desiring big tractor features in a small package. The timing of the creation of this segment of the tractor marketplace is a little blurry, but credit Kubota with its well-known BX series. John Deere followed and soon just about every manufacturer with the exception of Kioti offered a subcompact, or even subcompact series, but now that has changed with the introduction of the Kioti CS2410.

Every CS2410 begins with a heavy duty robotically welded steel frame into which a Daedong S773L 69 cubic inch three-cylinder diesel is inserted. The S773L makes 24.5 gross horsepower and 19.4 at the power take off (PTO). This is accomplished at 3,000 rpm, which is slightly higher than the competition but well within reason. Service is especially easy due to a hood design which opens 60 degrees and allows access to the air filter, fluid service, fuses, and electrical components.

2012 Kioti CS2410 Right Side

Power to the two-range hydrostatic transmission is delivered via shaft and, with the aforementioned 3,000 rpm engine speed, translates to a class-leading 0-10.31 mph forward and 0-6.96 mph reverse speed. Control is through a two-pedal arrangement that our testers all agreed was ergonomically positioned and nicely modulated. Fluid flow from the transmission is rated at 6.5 gpm, giving the three-point hitch (3PH) a lift capacity that is rated at 700 lbs. at the industry standard of 24”. Position control is standard and a real time saver when the tractor is used in conditions requiring return to a constant position.

2012 Kioti CS2410 with Loader

The mostly flat operators’ platform is rubber isolated and easily accessible from either side. Controls are color coordinated and thoughtfully laid out. The 4WD lever is just below the operator’s knee, the hydrostat range control is on the left fenderwell along with the rear and mid PTO controls (which can be operated independently of each other or at the same time) and the mower lift height adjustment lever. Levers for the wet disc PTO engagement and 3PH position control are located in the right fenderwell. Differential lock is accessed by the operator’s left heel. We found the high-back seat to be comfortable and the seatbelt retracts nicely in automotive fashion. The digital gauge package is illuminated the moment the engine is started and includes a tachometer, fuel and temperature gauges, along with warning lights for low fuel and overheat conditions. There is also a 12-volt power outlet to power your favorite portable accessory.

The hood is of the sloping design we prefer and offers excellent visibility. That excellent visibility is not hampered by the lack of daylight either as the CS2410 is equipped with bright 55W headlamps positioned to illuminate in a wide pattern. Power steering is standard and quite effortless, even when operating the tractor with a fully loaded bucket (more on this later). The brake pedal is controlled by the operator’s left foot, which is a more practical set up than some of the competition. When it comes to the roll over protection system (ROPS), Kioti has chosen not to skimp and equips the CS2410 with a foldable upper hoop.

Our test tractor was equipped with the SM2410 mid mount mower deck (the only deck currently available). The SM2410 is a 60” three-bladed side-discharge deck and is a brand new design tailored specifically to the CS2410 and we can tell you it cuts extremely well. With a cutting height that is adjustable from 1” – 4” and lifts hydraulically, it is sure to have the position that fits the owner’s needs no matter what the condition. We were able to take the CS2410 into overgrown and somewhat wet grass and it chewed through it with barely a ripple in the tachometer reading and leaving a surprisingly tiny amount of windrows. Take it to a more reasonable homeowner-like situation and the cut is right up there with the best we’ve tested. The SM2410 can also be outfitted at the same time as the optional loader and backhoe.

2012 Kioti CS2410 with Backhoe

And speaking of the loader, we also had the opportunity to move a good sized pile of gravel using the optional SL2410 loader. Bucket operation was quick even from idle, with the exception being of raising the boom from the ground to full lift height, which is to be expected. And when the engine was throttled up, performance was certainly on par with the best performing competitor machines in this category. The lift height was quite good as well at 71.3”, which is again among the highest in the subcompact category. Lift capacity is rated at 675.3 lbs and with only one bucket size (48”), matched well to the tractor/loader combination. The joystick control on the loader boom isn’t our most preferred location, but all of our testers found the position comfortable enough. Even in tight positions having to turn and move the bucket at the same time, the power steering and implement flow was plenty sufficient.

As mentioned above, a backhoe is also offered. Given the designation SL2410, the backhoe has an 84” digging depth and is offered with 8”, 12” and 16” bucket options.

The CS2410 rides on your choice of turf, Ag or industrial tires (ours was equipped with industrials) size 18×8.5-10 in the front and 26×12.0-12 in the rear. With a 98.1” overall length, 55.1” wheelbase, wet weight of 1485 lbs, and a non-commercial warranty of 48 months, this just may be that subcompact tractor you’ve been dreaming of. If you are in the market for a machine of this size and class, check out the CS2410 (coming to dealer stocks early this month). We think you’ll be glad you did.

Related Reading
2011 Kioti CK20S HST Overview
Kioti Enters Subcompact Tractor Market with CS2410

2012 Kubota GR2120 Review

Feature-packed and ready to work

Kubota’s GR2120 puts big tractor features into a compact package and might be in a class all alone.

We’d heard the buzz on tractor forums from happy GR Series owners but had never tested one. When we got word our local dealer was prepping one for delivery and the new owner-to-be would allow us a little seat time, the decision for our next review was never in question. The GR Series consists of the GR2020 20 horsepower air-cooled gasoline powered garden tractor and the tested GR2120 with a 21 horsepower liquid-cooled diesel powerplant. The rest of the niceties with the exception of mower deck size between models remain the same.

2012 Kubota GR2120 Front Left

The GR Series begins with a heavy-duty 5/16” thick ‘U’ frame into which the abovementioned Kubota manufactured engines are attached and power hydrostatic transmissions via a shaft drive (no belts to slip or need replacement here). Not only is the shaft-driven feature a class leader, but Kubota shoots darts into competition hearts with the addition of its Glide Steer AWD system. The Glide Steer system allows the front wheels to turn a full 70º each direction, but instead of damaging the turf as traditional 4WD systems often will, the transmission allows the inside rear wheel to freewheel, making tight turns possible without tearing up your lawn. Impressive.

2012 Kubota GR2120 Front

The GR2120 gets Kubota’s time tested and proven three-cylinder diesel. This is a smooth running powerplant with a wide torque curve that under no circumstances leaves the tractor wishing for more power. The single-speed hydrostatic transmission is controlled by Kubota’s single treadle pedal that gives the operator infinite control over the 0-6.2 mph forward and 0-3.1 mph rated speed. We found the flat operator’s platform roomy with plenty of legroom and easy to access from either side. The high-back seat had plenty of travel and came with another big tractor feature; operator weight adjustability. On the left fenderwell is a cupholder and the hydraulic mower lift lever that gives the operator 1/4” incremental control over the 1” – 4” cutting height. Our tractor had the optional arm rest kit installed (a $55 option) that we felt was well worth the added operator comfort it offered. Power steering and cruise control are standard.

2012 Kubota GR2120 Turning

Our GR2120 came with Kubota’s 54” three-blade side discharge deck (a 48” deck is available) that begins with a 10-gauge steel deck. Like the engine to transmission, the transmission to deck is also shaft driven and is engaged by an electronically actuated wet clutch power take off (PTO). The 5” deep shell mower deck has plenty of air flow and lift, and combined with the diesel’s wide powerband, gives the GR2120/54” the ability to tackle even a neglected lawn. The deck is mulch compatible, though our test tractor did not have this option installed. Measuring the uncut circle left with the 54” deck and we came up with 35”. Not bad for a 970 lb tractor that can use all of that maneuverability without tearing up your turf. Nice. Styling is always subjective, but our reviewers universally liked the snark-nosed hood with halogen headlamps that gave the operator an excellent view, whether it was during the day or night.

Kubota, like every other manufacturer, equips the GR series with a system that prevents the operator from mowing in reverse. Longtime readers know our thoughts on this: while we believe operators should look behind them before reversing we can’t see how pressing a switch to override the system ensures that the operator does so. Anyway, the Kubota Reverse Awareness System (KRA) allows the operator to override the system by depressing a switch. While KRA is disengaged, a flashing light reminds you that reverse mowing has been selected.

The GR2120 is 77.2” long by 50.8” high and 66.9” wide with mower installed. The tires are turf, size 16×7.8-8 on the front and 23×10.5-12 on the rear and ride on a 50.4” wheelbase. Options in addition to the arm rest and mulch kits are a 46” snow blower (model GR2707), 48” front blade (model GR2705), and a 10-bushel Catch All Grass Catcher (GCK54-GR). MSRP with the arm rest kit is $9,443 and the GR comes with Kubota’s 24 month homeowner limited warranty (extended warranties are available).

So what tractors does the GR2120 compete with? This is a hard question to answer. Kubota compares both GR models to the Deere X500/534 and the Simplicity 23/50 PS 4WD (an older model). Though the size comparison is fair, when you factor in the powerful yet thrifty diesel engine, Billy Goat traction of the AWD Glide Steer system, reliability of Shaft Drive and ease of hydraulic implement lift, the GR2120 is really in a class by itself. If you are in the market for a machine of this size and class, you owe it to yourself to check out the GR Series. We think you’ll be glad you did.

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2011 John Deere Select Series X500 Review
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2012 John Deere Select Series X324 AWS Review

A worthwhile step up from the X304

As John Deere celebrates its 175th year, we marvel at the improvements that have trickled down over those years—many of which we take for granted. All Wheel Steer technology (AWS) is one of those improvements and we’re fast becoming fans of how this technology translates into reduced time performing the task at hand.

A few months ago we tested the John Deere X304, the entry-level model in this series with AWS, and came away quite impressed. When our local dealer informed us that a big brother X324 was available for us to try out, we were off to the land of green. With the X324 ringing in at about a $1000 premium ($4699 vs. $3699) over the X304, we were curious to see what the consumer gets for that hefty jump in cost. The simple answer is that John Deere, as in all of its product lines, gives you a little more each step up in the model scale. More horsepower, larger transmission, bigger mowing deck—and the list goes on. Below we’ll talk specifics.

2012 John Deere X324 AWS Low Angle

The X324 starts with a robotically welded full frame that is made of 3MM steel and reinforced at stress points (bumper and rear hitch) with 3.8mm metal. After a durable powder coat paint application an air-cooled 726 cc Kawasaki V-Twin that makes 22 horsepower at 3600 RPMs is attached to the frame. This is a deliciously smooth and quiet powerplant that comes with automotive-like niceties like full pressure lubrication with a changeable spin-on/off oil filter, cast iron cylinder liners, overhead valves, two-stage air filter and a flywheel alternator generating 15 amps. The front axle is nodular cast iron and supports 15×6-6 tires (the rear gets 20×10-10 tires) with greaseable spindles and ball joints. With the AWS system, this translates to a turning radius of 15” and an uncut circle of 9”, which is the true measure of maneuverability.

2012 John Deere X324 AWS Studio

The transmission powering the X324 is a Kanzaki Tuff Torq K58 hydrostatic unit that is actuated by Deere’s two-pedal arrangement which our testers feel is one of the most ergonomically designed systems available. The K58 is a heavy duty design with 1” axles and high-strength gears. Its internal charge pump makes for quieter operation, which translates to reduced whine for the operator, who gets infinite control over the 0-5.9 mph forward and 0-3.5 mph reverse ranges. Brakes are internal wet-disc and never need to be adjusted.

The X324 gets Deere’s 48” 3-blade Edge Xtra mowing deck which starts with a 3mm stamped shell and is designed for maximum airflow. The deck is mulch compatible (with an optional mulch kit) and comes with spring-loaded anti-scalp adjusters that make changing height settings a snap and also allow for the wheels to be turned 90 degrees for easy removal—you just roll the deck out from under the tractor. For that perfectly level cut, Deere makes it easy to adjust side-to-side tilt from the operator’s seat and includes a gauge that fits in the height adjustment knob and a hex key for this purpose. Front to back rake is also adjustable, but you need to get off the tractor to make this rarely needed adjustment. Mowing height adjustment is controllable in ¼” increments from 1” to 4” and the deck is lifted by a pedal that can be adjusted for lift effort preferences.

2012 John Deere X324 AWS Top View

The operator gets a well laid out platform with color coded controls and a 15” open-back seat with 7” of travel over 15 pre-set positions and a suspension adjustment for operator weight. Under the seat is a tool tray and there is a cupholder and storage tray on the left fenderwell. Our tractor came with an optional 12V outlet conveniently located on the console so there’s no need to worry about draining your iPhone battery while mowing. Cruise control is standard and adding fuel to the 3.3-gallon tank was especially easy with the large mouth cap located on the left rear fenderwell. The Xenoy hood, which is nearly indestructible, hides scratches, and won’t rust or dent, and is also designed to vent hot air out the front and away from the operator. Nice! We were also impressed by the separate throttle and choke arrangement – Deere engineers equipped the latter with a spring that prevents the operator from unknowingly running the tractor with the choke on.

The X324 comes with one of our least favorite devices that we all are forced to get accustomed to—the dreaded Reverse Implement Operation (RIO). It makes the operator lift and hold the Power Take Off (PTO) switch while pressing the reverse lever . . . each time they wish to reverse while the blades are turning. While we are in agreement with turning and looking behind you before backing up, making the operator push a button doesn’t ensure this and only adds more effort to what should be a relaxing day taking care of one’s lawn.

2012 John Deere X324 AWS Turning

The X324 has a wheelbase of 49.4” and an overall length of 72”. It weighs 714 lbs without fluids and sits 43” high. So is the X324 worth $1000 more than the X304? We thought so. Both deliver solid values, but the more powerful engine, wider deck and K58 tranny along with the niceties mentioned above make this a tractor we wouldn’t mind seeing in our garage or shed. Add to that Deere’s 175 years of experience and a four-year, 300-hour warranty and you might think so too.

Related Reading
2011 John Deere Select Series X304 4WS Review
2011 John Deere D170 Review
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