Once you determine that a compact tractor is the right piece of equipment for the jobs on your specific spot of land, then the research commences. There are several tractor brands to choose from. Plus, there are so many different categories. We’ve cross-referenced some different sources and came up with this list of 5 of the best compact tractors on the market.
What is a compact tractor?
First of all, what is a compact tractor? CompactEquipment.com defines the compact tractor as an agricultural tractor that is smaller than a typical farming tractor. Compact tractor models are compatible with first-category implements, as they use a 540-rpm power take off attachment system (PTO) combined with a three-point hitch. A compact tractor usually weighs less than 4,000 pounds (although some are a little larger).
“Today’s compact tractors are defined as small agricultural tractors equipped with a 540-rpm PTO and a three-point hitch designed for Category 1 implements. Compact tractors generally have a mass less than 4,000 lbs and use less than 40 PTO hp to run their attachments.”
Best compact tractors to buy right now
Great Day Outdoors calls the compact tractor the “Swiss army knife” of the tractor world. Even within the compact tractor segment, there are several different styles and sizes. They are perfect for anyone who needs the absolute utility and versatility of a tractor, but isn’t necessarily plowing 200 acres of cornfields each season.
John Deere, New Holland, and Kubota are today’s leading ( though not only) producers in the small tractor category. These tractors are built with relatively smaller footprints than their behemoth counterparts. However, they all have a wide range of implements that they can make use of. Here are 3 of the best.
New Holland Boomer 55 Cab (T4B)
A farmer favorite, the Boomer 55 Cab is a 55 hp compact tractor. the 3-cylinder engine has a 12.4-gallon fuel tank. According to Tractor.com, this New Holland compact tractor uses an independent electro-hydraulic PTO that lends 46.7 hp to the job.
But the T4B offers other transmission options as well. These include a 16×16 gear option and the three-range dual-pedal hydrostatic transmission. New Holland shows a price of $43,021 for the Boomer 55 Cab compact tractor.
The New Holland T4B has a maximum ball end lift capacity of 2,756 pounds. It’s one of the larger compact tractors with a height of 94 inches and a 128.1″x69.1″ footprint. This is one of the best compact tractors around and weighs in at 4,194 pounds.
John Deere 4066M Heavy Duty
Although the John Deere 3025E is a great tractor for first-time tractor buyers, the John Deere 4066M Heavy Duty takes it up a notch. This is a compact tractor for a heavy-duty work environment. The John Deere 4066M HD is one of the best compact tractors on the market and it has a turbocharged diesel engine.
Combine that with an eHydrostatic transmission and both mid and rear hydraulics and you’ve got yourself a bonafide land tamer. This beast of a compact tractor has 65.9 hp, with PTO horsepower at 52. It’s price at $51,842 and John Deere actually has it on sale right now.
The John Deere 4066M Heavy Duty offers options for three-point, Category 1, and Category 2 hitching options with a lift capacity of 2,500 pounds. This model has nice creature comforts like standard cruise control and optional wraparound halogen headlights as well as fender-mounted light for nighttime jobs.
Don’t let its size deceive you. The Kubota L2501 is agile and perfect for general use––it’s one of the best smaller tractors in the industry. It’s not as powerful on paper as the others on this list, but that doesn’t hold the Kubota L2501 back.
This model has a 24.8 hp engine with PTO horsepower at 20.5. It’s a lighter unit, weighing 2,425 pounds. The 3-cylinder engine has a 10-gallon fuel tank. The three-point hitching system offers a 1,918 pound lift capacity at the ball point.
It offers both two- and four-wheel drive options. The Kubota L2501 uses a gear shift transmission that allows the operator eight forward speeds and four in reverse. There’s also a hydrostatic transmission model with three-range speed. The Kubota L2501 starts as low as $17,600 although implements and options can ring up the price quickly.
Finding a good tractor for your work environment
Overall, if you are looking for a great tractor that isn’t a massive behemoth with its own zip code, a compact tractor is your best best. These aren’t the only good compact tractors out there. Other brands like Massey and Case IH make nice ones, too.
However, these three are among the best compact tractors on the market. That said, finding a good tractor depends largely on your working environment as well as the jobs it will need to get done.