2014 Compact Tractor Spec Guide

The utility tractor can be a versatile piece of iron. Ask any farmer, landscaper or large estate owner — a compact tractor is a great way to tackle that long must-do list hanging up in your garage or warehouse. Cut the grass, mulch the flowerbeds, bale hay, spread gravel, level a field, install that sprinkler system and then pick up dinner — it can tackle almost all of those labor-intensive chores. The diversity and approachability of compact tractors have made them big business in North America. Today compact tractors are defined by their attachment system. The American Society of Agricultural Engineers (ASAE) defines compact tractors as small agricultural tractors equipped with a 540-rpm Power Take Off system (PTO) and a three-point hitch designed for (mostly) Category 1 implements.

Mow grass, dig trenches, auger holes or pick and place large piles of dirt or gravel with a compact utility tractor’s PTO. Compact tractors are a versatile breed of machine, taking implements in the front, back and under the belly, pulling way more than its weight on most jobsites.

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. Today, John Deere, Kubota and New Holland are the three most popular manufacturers of these machines — all with decades worth of compact tractor experience. Yet, there are plenty of players primed to accommodate the growing compact tractor market (Case IH, Yanmar, Kioti and Massey Ferguson are all bringing innovative alternatives to the small utility tractor market).

Compact tractors quickly appeared from 40 hp down through the early 1980s, filling the market gap left by American tractor manufacturers gearing up to meet market demand by the American farmers for larger and higher horsepower Ag tractors. Invariably, schools, parks, landscapers, cemeteries and hobby farmers all took an immediate liking to these high-production, economical-to-own and user-friendly compact tractors. There are hundreds of model choices and unique features galore (from air conditioned cabs to power transmissions), along with a zillion different implements (mowers, landscape rakes, augers, buckets, backhoes, hay bales, fork lifts, seeders, brush cutters and beyond). To learn more about these compact utility tractors, peruse the product summaries and specs on the following pages.

Case IH Farmall

John Deere



Massey Ferguson

New Holland

Yanmar America

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  • Michael L. Edwards
    November 25, 2014 11:25:26

    I own a Mahindra Compact made by Mitsubishi. It is a 26 hp machine and is vary compatible with the ones you are pushing and and I paid much less then the comparable John Deer or Kabota. Like Mahindra none of the others you are pushing are American made. I would not be surprised if many of the ones you are pushing are made in Korea or by Mitsubishi.

  • Michael L. Edwards
    November 19, 2014 17:59:38

    I have a Mahindra compact tractor made by Mitsubishi, I have a front loader and backhoe on it and I am quite pleased with what I can do with it. You need to get Mahindra in your mix of tractors.

    • Mike Kezdi
      November 20, 2014 09:13:24

      Though Mahindra is not listed in the section above, for those interested in finding out more about that product line, here is a link to their website. http://mahindrausa.com/Tractors/series