New high performance Gator utility vehicle

Steve Mitchellin Industry News

Increased power and ground clearance, a higher top speed and improved suspension are features of the latest addition to the award-winning Gator range. The new XUV 850D 4x4 Gator utility vehicle from John Deere is designed for greater off-road and rough-terrain performance, and is available from the full John Deere dealer network from August 2008.JD_XUV-850D-Gator.jpg

The XUV Gator's 24hp (850cc) liquid-cooled, three-cylinder Yanmar diesel engine is the most powerful and quickest accelerating in its class, with the fastest top speed at 30mph (in high range). Advanced clutching ensures smooth power delivery and engine braking assistance from the dual range constantly variable transmission.

All round independent suspension offers improved handling, operator comfort and ride quality, with 175mm (7in) of suspension travel and 270mm (nearly 11in) of ground clearance, aided by larger wheels and tyres. This enables the XUV Gator to follow rough and bumpy terrain with ease while keeping all four wheels firmly on the ground, whether the vehicle is fully loaded or unladen. Maximum capacity of the steel tipping cargo box is 453kg, while total payload capacity is 635kg and towing capacity is 590kg on level terrain.
Based on a hydroformed steel frame for increased durability, the XUV Gator also offers the only true four-wheel drive traction system on the utility vehicle market. Activated by a simple dash-mounted electronic rocker switch, this on-demand system incorporates lockable front and rear differentials to maintain excellent traction in the toughest ground conditions.

Additional operator friendly features include a glove box and storage compartment, cup holder, 12V power outlet and integrated 50mm (2in) rear hitch. The standard four post ROPS frame can be optionally upgraded to a deluxe full glass cab if required. UK list price of the new John Deere XUV 850D 4x4 Gator utility vehicle starts at £9299.

But don't just take John Deere's word for it!JD_Gator.jpg

John Deere's new XUV 850D 4x4 Gator utility vehicle won the transport category in this year's Royal Show/Farmers Guardian New Equipment Awards 2008. The judging team were the RASE's honorary consulting engineer Matthew Home, Farmers Guardian's machinery editor Mervyn Bailey and farmer Robert Lockhart.

The XUV Gator also won two major product test awards this year in the USA. As winner of the ATV/Utility Vehicle category of the 2008 Finovation Awards, the XUV was ranked highest in the Farm Industry News Utility Vehicle Rodeo, a two-day product testing event in which farmers scored utility vehicles from nine different companies, while completing typical farm tasks. Finovation Awards are given to the most innovative products in 20 different categories published within Farm Industry News, ranging from combines to crop chemicals, and are based on reader responses and voting by the Team FIN farmers.
Side X Side Action magazine also named the XUV its Utility Vehicle of the Year during the 2008 Side X Side Shoot-Out, another comprehensive two-day test in which John Deere went up against 10 different utility vehicles from eight other manufacturers.

Scoring of the machines was determined by how each model handled different tasks such as towing a 465kg loaded trailer, pulling a rake attachment and driving with the cargo box at half and full capacities. The XUV 850D received maximum five star ratings on turning, room for the operator and passenger, ease of getting in and out of the vehicle, and manufacturing and engineering quality.

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