The December/January issue of Farm & Ranch Living magazine featured the results of a survey where readers were asked to name their favorite tractors of all time. The list is heavy on models from the 1930s through the 1950s, proving that, even as new models increasingly incorporate technological innovations that make them more efficient and easier to handle, the classics still hold a soft spot in many farmers' hearts.
The five favorite tractors, as ranked by the readers of Farm & Ranch Living, are as follows:
- Farmall Model H: International Harvester (IH) stopped using the Farmall brand name in 1973, and IH itself ceased to exist in 1986, but the Model H dominated the American landscape in the 1940s and 50s. Nearly 400,000 were mass-produced following the Ford assembly line model, and many remain in operation with still more being preserved as antiques.
- Ford Model 8N: One quarter of all tractors manufactured in the U.S. between 1947 and 1952 were 8N models, with sales averaging more than 400 units every day during that period.
- Farmall Model M: The larger counterpart of the Model H, the Model M was the first diesel-powered tractor of its kind, and an ideal choice for row crops.
- John Deere Model B: Produced from 1935 to 1952, the Model B and the larger Model A featured a two-cylinder engine, four-speed transmission and front-wheel options.
- John Deere Model 4020: The newest model in the top five, the 4020 was the most popular during its years of production, 1964–1972. It has a six-cylinder engine and 96 PTO horsepower.
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Respondents showed an affinity for the classics of the 1940s.