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  1. #11
    Veteran Member
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    Dec 2004
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    2,273
    Location
    western NC
    Tractor
    JD 2320; 4520

    Default Re: JD Gator with diesel engine?

    I thought you can now get factory PS with the 855d. Because of the new TierIV emissions requirements I doubt any manufacturers are going to be jumping at going to a higher HP diesel than 25 HP. I have had an 850D which had the same power and thought it was plenty powerful except for pulling steep grades in high range loaded. Most people do not live where it is as steep as I do, so the lower end diesel torque would get most jobs done fine, last a very long time and consume very little fuel along the way. The diesel is nowhere near as powerful as the 825I, but it has its niche for sure. The Polaris Ranger is also offered in diesel and has the same power output and brand of engine. Since it is a little lighter, it likely would have more vigorous performance but likely not much more, if any, top speed. I have owned a Ranger (not a diesel--800EPS) and it was fine and trouble free. It was not as heavily made as the Gator and I suspect would not hold up quite as well long term, though many folks I know have frankly abused their Rangers and have had little if any mechanical troubles. I know that Polaris has done some extensive frame redesign on their flagship Ranger (the 900), but I do not know that that technology has filtered throughout the other models (I do not think it has). One other consideration is that there is a pretty slick aftermarket turbo kit for the Yanmar diesel that will increase HP into the mid-30 range, but it is not cheap and likely would require "professional" installation to be done correctly. I will say in closing that I have owned 5 Gators (2 HPX and 3 XUV) and have had zero significant service issues with any of them so I can personally attest to their reliability. I agree with JESSE in the respect that the 6x4 machines cannot hold a candle to the new XUV Gators (nor many of the other UTV's) unless one is doing no-sport, heavy hauling duties on only moderate terrain.

    John M

  2. #12
    Platinum Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    576
    Location
    Creal Springs, IL
    Tractor
    Kubota M7040, ZD326, JD Gator 855D

    Default Re: JD Gator with diesel engine?

    Power steering is available and very nice. I will not buy another without it. I've had mine for a couple of weeks. Came from a Teryx that had a lot more pep....but I didn't drive the Teryx like that. This 855D has got enough pep and speed to suit me. And it is far smoother in the pasture than the Teryx. I thought the Teryx was pretty good, but this gator beats it on ride. I got very tired of the gas cans with the Teryx...and it was thirsty. I pump diesel from my truck for mowers etc, and now the 855D. I like it.

  3. #13
    Veteran Member jimgerken's Avatar
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    Nov 2001
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    1,632
    Location
    Minnesota
    Tractor
    John Deere 3720

    Default Re: JD Gator with diesel engine?

    Much Thanks to all for relating your experience. I have some time to research a bit more (in no hurry to purchase), so next stop is test driving a couple.
    I have an ATV today, and it is going up for sale. It is a CanAm 800 Outlander Max (two-up seat). 2009, low hours, perfect condition. I have the CanAm Apache snow tracks on it (also have wheels and tires for it of course). I am wondering if the wheel bolt pattern of the CanAm and the Gator and the Ranger happen to be the same. If the wheel bolt pattern is the same, I can adapt the track kit to the Gator, so would keep the track kit and not sell it with the Outlander. If the pattern is different, the idea is a dead end, so will sell the tracks too.
    Is there an on-line reference to the wheel bolt pattern for Gator? Maybe an aftermarket rim sales site would be good, I better go check that out.

  4. #14
    Veteran Member jimgerken's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2001
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    1,632
    Location
    Minnesota
    Tractor
    John Deere 3720

    Default Re: JD Gator with diesel engine?

    Already looks like a dead end. Gator have five bolt pattern, Can Am used 4 x 137mm pattern. Oh well, someone gets a nice package deal on both the 800 and the trax....

  5. #15
    Elite Member
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    Mar 2009
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    2,956
    Location
    Lee, IL
    Tractor
    John Deere 1070

    Default Re: JD Gator with diesel engine?

    Quote Originally Posted by jimgerken View Post
    Thanks Jesse1
    I see Polaris also offers a diesel-engined UTV. I have a feeling the JD would outlast the Polaris. I've owned both brands, many ATV's in Polaris, JD tractors of course, and it just seems like the JD would be the better long-term investment.
    BTW, is there anything greaseable on the Gator Jesse? Suspension points, drive shafts, whatever? If there are grease points, it usually means the item will last longer, in my experience.
    I was in my deere dealer about a year ago and they had a gator and a ranger sitting next to each other on the show room floor (they have started selling polaris as of late). The parts guy they have there is very knowledgeable and has his own shop at home repairing tractors on the side. I was picking up some parts and saw the utv's sitting there and jokingly asked him which one was better (expecting him to say the Deere of course). He kind of jokingly looked around to make sure no one was there and said that he thought the polaris was a better machine. I have absolutely no idea what models they were, but will say that it was the newer style gator(the hummer version, not the deuce and a half).

  6. #16
    Gold Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Posts
    414
    Location
    Sumner, Texas
    Tractor
    Cub Cadet 2145, Z-Force 48 and early Dixon

    Default Re: JD Gator with diesel engine?

    If you will be going long distances on the gravel roads, consider this:

    The 855D tops out at 30 or 32 MPH. The 825i tops out at 44MPH.

    I just bought an 825i and I also run distances on gravel and even some paved roads. I wanted an 855D really bad, but needed to get it quick (long story) and it was going to take awhile. I love diesels and have diesel vehicles and machinery of all description around the place. The higher speed of the 825i is topping the desire for a diesel.

    If you are not going to need to go over 30MPH and will be using it a LOT, then the diesel would be the only way to go IMHO.

    Doc
    Doc

    JD 5045D - Ford 3000
    I live so far out in the boondocks that my TV runs on propane.

  7. #17
    Veteran Member JESSE1's Avatar
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    Nov 2003
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    1,162
    Location
    Kilgore, Texas
    Tractor
    JD 6400

    Default Re: JD Gator with diesel engine?

    I use my 855D only in the pasture so a high top speed is not necessary for my use. I like the fact I only have to fuel about once every two weeks. The 825i is a high revving engine that no doubt likes running fast.
    6400 John Deere w/ cab, JD 535 Baler, 997 ZTR Diesel, 72" 7 Iron deck, John Deere 855D 4x4 Diesel Gator

  8. #18
    Veteran Member
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    Dec 2004
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    2,273
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    western NC
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    JD 2320; 4520

    Default Re: JD Gator with diesel engine?

    Mike H, we each have our opinions on this and I think there probably is not an answer to which is "better" between the Gator and the Ranger in its purest sense. I will say that I have had both brands within the past three years and the considered top model at the time from each. For durability, quality of build, and heavy work there is no question the Gator XUV is the better machine. I have an 825I and it is simply much stronger for working than my prior Ranger 800 EPS LE. It is larger and weighs a lot more, and has much heavier components but has better acceleration and similar top end performance to the Ranger. Doing the same tasks I have done before the Gator is the better machine--one reason I went this direction (because it does well what I need to do). The Polaris, however, is simply a pleasure to drive. Unless one is testing the work limits of the Ranger it is nearly the equal of the Gator. I personally think one area where Polaris is much better is in the ergonomics of the cab and another the quality of the accessories. Both of these areas favor the Ranger, but their accessories are generally a bit more expensive than those of the Gator. The little things also, such as the larger fuel tank (a 5.3 gallon tank on the 825I, which uses about 1-1.5 gallons per hour--really?) better bench seat and more storage space also are better on the Ranger. As I have said in prior postings, were I to buy something to drive around between a top end Ranger and an 825I or 855D gator, I would choose the Polaris, especially if I was not pushing the weight/load limits of its capability or doing a fair amount of recreational duty. Instead, I chose the Gator because I mostly work my UTV but need power and some speed to get my work done efficiently. I also cannot have my equipment down when I use it and I have found the Gator to be more strongly made (though I never had really any major service issues with my Ranger) and I suspect it will perform more consistently over the long haul and has good John Deere support as well. I would choose a Ranger over a XUV 625I any day and perhaps over an 855D also, but would not choose one over an 825I. Perhaps the machine you saw in comparison was the 625I, which really cannot compete with the Polaris product in performance. Though but one person's opinion, it is the opinion of one who has owned and operated both and has a good relationship with both brand dealers that I form it. This said, I have not used the new 900 Ranger. I am intrigued by it, not because of the larger engine, but rather due to Polaris' evolution of the product and the improved design of the frame and suspension. I believe in no small part the has been driven by the competition within the market, primarily from JD, but am happy to see that Polaris is acting to improve suspect aspects of an otherwise solid machine. This may have equalized things a bit.

    John M

  9. #19
    Veteran Member jimgerken's Avatar
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    Minnesota
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    John Deere 3720

    Default Re: JD Gator with diesel engine?

    Thanks John! I looked at the 2013 900 Polaris last night. I am a mechanical designer so it is typically tough to impress me, but this machine did that. Everywhere I looked (first look admittedly) I saw innovative valuable engineering and well-thought out product. I will go next to see the Gator, and will eventually test drive each. The longer I delay the buying decision, the more I lean toward favoring the sport over the work useage, if there has to be a tradeoff. But for me, the machine has to be able to do both well, which is a tough mission.

  10. #20
    Veteran Member
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    Dec 2004
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    western NC
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    JD 2320; 4520

    Default Re: JD Gator with diesel engine?

    Jim, they would both fit your needs well. I suspect you would be happy with either. I think a lot goes back to your feelings about the dealer for each product and pricing. Be sure when you are testing to compare like machines. On big example is power steering. Both companies now offer power steering on their high end UTV's as an option. My understanding is that Polaris will not offer the limited edition 900's with PS until this coming month, but John Deere has PS as an option now. Personally I would not want either without this option but as a matter of suggestion I would want to make sure you tested both with and without it. I think one's opinion likely could be swayed by just this one difference (i.e., testing an 825I with PS and a 900 Ranger without of something similar). You would have to test an 800 EPS LE I believe at this time to see about the Polaris PS but then could drive the 900 to get a feel for the design change. If you can find a 900 with the PS, you would be really lucky to try it. Either of these machine are sporty enough to make most people happy and they are also able to work, unlike some of the "sport" side by sides which are really only toys and can do no work to speak of.

    John M

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