Planter tractor price prospects

Demand for late-model high hp. tractors is pushing up their values.

The late-model horsepower marketplace was presenting a windfall of availability for anyone searching for a low hour planter tractor (200 hp. or greater tractors). In particular it appears that sales of new high horsepower front-wheel drive (FWD) machines were strong in 2018 and continued to be brisk into the following year. Now a percentage of those tractors have come in on trade-in or are on heading to auction.  

While searching the inventories of 8000R series tractors listed on John Deere's dealer site,, I discovered 1,400 tractors built between 2016 to 2019  sitting on dealers lots. And the numbers of low-hour model year 2018 and 2019 were surprisingly strong.

New sales are strong 

Inventories of late-model tractor will continue to be fed as 2020 tractors start coming in on trade this month as a result of increasing year-end purchases of new tractors. Spurring on this surge of purchases are higher harvest-time commodity prices. 

At press time there was speculation of $11 soybeans based on lower yields in the US and shortages of soybeans in Brazil in 2021. And government payments to farmers to support them during the COVID crisis pumped extra cash into the marketplace. "And a lot of that money is being spent on machinery," observes Scott Cook of Cook Auction ( "The other factor in play here is that dealers are reporting that there is limited availability of certain tractor models from the manufacturer."

The tractor market is in flux these days

All these factors have placed the used tractor market in flux. This has definitely started to push up the prices of late-model tractors up in the used marketplace.

The Pocket Price Guide on the next provides a glimpse into the dealer asking prices being asked on the most popular 2019 planter tractor models from Case IH and John Deere. 

I narrowed the tractors featured in this guide to the lowest hour machines available at press time.

Market conditions are going to require extra Internet time searching for tractors that suit you needs and sharp pencils employed to figure out the best deal in the marketplace.

Certainly use will have a huge impact on late-model prices. The tractors in the Pocket Price Guide offer a good example of that. While these tractors are two years old they are "like new" thanks to their low hours. Supporting their values is the fact that these tractors are also under warranty with some of that coverage extending into 2022.

Low hour tractors always bring a premium even when the marketplace was loaded with tractors as it was several years ago, Cook observes. "But if new tractor inventories are limited from the manufacturer then this makes the low-hour tractor a premium piece of equipment."

Price impact of options

Also, how a tractor is equipped influences their asking values. Such optional features such as suspended front axles and deluxe cabs have become so common that influence on price is neutral. But continuously variable transmissions (CVT or IVT), higher capacity hydraulic pumps, additional hydraulic outlets (SCVs) and power-beyond hydraulics can add $5,000 to $8,000 to asking prices. 

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