The History of John Deere Lawn Mowers

The History of John Deere Lawn Mowers

John Deere Lawn Mowers

John Deere has been producing lawn mowers for homeowners and landscapers for over 50 years. Hundreds of new models have been introduced throughout this period and that has played a huge role in the evolution of John Deere equipment today. Read more to understand the history behind John Deere lawn mowers.

John Deere Lawn Mowers – 1960s

John Deere broke into the lawn tractor market in 1963, introducing the model 110, with a 4-stroke petrol-fueled engine with 7 horsepower. Due to its ergonomic design and futuristic features, like Variable Speed Drive, the 110 became a big seller.

During the 1960s, lawn mowing was becoming a more popular leisure activity so John Deere was prompted to dive into the marketplace by offering similar features and implements that the bigger farming tractors incorporated.

After the 100 lawn mower proved successful, the John Deere 60 model was introduced shortly after. This mower was designed for operators in urban areas who had less land and didn’t need the larger 110 model. The 60 was designed for lawn work and not heavy workloads like the 110. The 60 model offered a variety of attachments, making it a versatile machine for its time. The attachments included pull a behind sprayer, model 80 dump cart, snow blade, and snow thrower.

Continuing on the success of the 110, John Deere introduced the 112 model, a larger model that carried a similar style as the 110 but with a bigger motor and wider deck. The 112 was designed for those who needed a machine for larger jobs than the 110 and 60 were capable of.

John Deere also introduced the John Deere 140 shortly after. This model was known for having a lot of power for such a small machine. With a 14 hp Kohler engine and hydrostatic transmission, the 140 was ahead of its time, and capable of accomplishing all kinds of yard work.

John Deere Lawn Mowers – 1970s

While a few existing models that were introduced in the 1960s were upgraded in the early 1970s, John Deere took on major advancements in 1975 when the 200, 300 and 400 Series riding lawn mowers were produced. These machines provided customers with new and exciting features including engine options between 8-16 horsepower, new style hood and grill, integral headlights, engine side panels, and power steering.

John Deere Lawn Mowers – 1980s

In 1984, John Deere introduced the 430, the first tractor to combine a diesel engine with hydrostatic drive and power steering.  This model made quite the impression in the tractor industry, featuring a powerful Yanmar 3-cylinder water-cooled diesel engine instead. The 430 weighed 1,170 lbs, making it the heaviest and strongest John Deere machine of its time.

During the 1980s, the 300 Series was redesigned and many new features were added from the rear-frame redesign from “closed” to “open” configuration and square-shaped fender deck to the reserve fuel tank for increased productivity.

During this time, John Deere manufactured its millionth lawn and garden tractor and introduced the R Series and S Series, designed for customers working both small and large pieces of land.

The R Series was a good fit for those handling smaller areas and included features like a 5-speed gear-drive transmission and tight turning radius of 27 inches. The S Series, for those with bigger areas to cover, incorporated an electric start, 30-inch cutting width and 8 horsepower engines.

John Deere Lawn Mowers – 1990s

In the 1990s John Deere manufactured its 2 millionth lawn tractor with the LX188 model and its 3 millionth tractor with the LT133. The LT Series, LX Series, and GT and GX Series were crucial to the history of John Deere lawn mowers.

The LT Series became one of the most popular John Deere mowers ever. Operators were given wider cuts and a greater amount of fuel. John Deere placed more emphasis on comfort with the adjustable operator seat for those who spent long hours on their equipment.

The LX Series was known for its versatility, allowing owners to use a variety of attachments to handle a variety of projects around the yard. The GT and GX Series were the perfect fit for those who needed more power and size to complete yard tasks. These machines could hook up to other implements like snow blowers and baggers, and a variety of rear attachments like aerators and utility carts.

John Deere Lawn Mowers – 2000s

Some of the biggest product announcements made in the 2000s were the LA Series and the X Series. The LA Series models catered to medium and large lawns. Key features included the full-length steel welded frame, headlights, comfortable operator station, and Edge Cutting system. This series also incorporates John Deere’s trademarked CargO Mount system, which allows users to easily attach large baggers or other heavy rear-mounted equipment.

The technology is what sets the X Series models apart. These machines transfer power to the wheels through the hydrostatic transmission to save time during operation and eliminate unnecessary gear-changing to speed up or slow down.

Take a look at all the John Deere lawn mowers that were introduced throughout the years.

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Charles Deere: The Man Behind John Deere’s Commercial Success

Green Parts Direct - Charles DeereSure, you’ve heard of John Deere, the name behind the famous brand many have come to know and love. But do you know about the other Deere who was responsible for the company’s successful growth before and during the turn of the 20th century? That man, otherwise referred to as John Deere’s son, was better known as Charles Deere.

John Deere’s second son, Charles Deere, was born in 1837, the same year that John Deere created his trademark self-cleaning plow from an old steel saw blade. Although this coincidence may now seem like an omen to the contributions Charles Deere would one day make to the company, the Deere family did not initially plan for Charles to assume a management role. In fact, it was John Deere’s eldest son, Francis Albert, who planned to one day take over the family business. That all changed, however, when Francis unexpectedly died during a flu outbreak at age 18. Assuming his older brother’s role, Charles Deere attended business school and in 1854, began working at his father’s company.

A natural at bookkeeping, Charles Deere advanced quickly in managing the company’s finances and soon moved on to become head of sales. In this role, Charles combined his knack for business with an extensive knowledge of plows to demonstrate equipment and win over new customers.

After years of prosperity under Charles’ direction, the Deere business hit a rough patch during the “Panic of 1857.” During this time, many businesses faced economic hardship—and the Deere business was no exception. Faced with overspending in production and manufacturing costs, John Deere turned company leadership over to Charles, who used his know-how to guide finances in the right direction. This overhaul included reorganizing the business into a partnership called John Deere & Company, which John Deere and Charles Deere shared equally with colleagues Luke Hemenway and David Bugbee. This strategy allowed the Deeres to manage more money within the family, avoiding personal bankruptcy in the event that something should happen to the business.

To ensure future success of John Deere & Company, Charles Deere remained in a leadership role even though his father held on to the official title of company president. It was under Charles’ management that the company continued to prosper, giving birth to new branch houses across the country. Through his father’s death in 1886 until his own passing in 1907, Charles Deere also helped expand a product line that included over 300 models of plows and other various types of farm equipment. Today, Deere & Company continues to serve customers in agricultural and landscaping professions, providing quality products that deliver superior results.

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Green-Parts-Direct.com stocks a wide inventory of parts for John Deere power equipment. Our comprehensive parts selection allows us to provide quick response times and help you confidently find the parts you need.

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Charles Deere