I replaced my old Ford 8N that did not cut it in northern Minnesota to remove large amount of snow during occasional use. After extensive search and considerations, I was deciding between the John Deere 4720 and Kubota L5740. Two very capable tractors for my needs, some had advantages for the Deere and some for Kubota. At the end of the day, the major factors for Deere 4720 were: self leveling loader, sealed cab and better side to side links at the 3 point hitch.
The things I liked better on the Kubota were: loader structurally tied to the rear axle rather than the gear case, having the skid steer loader attachment with appropriately sized bucket (Deere had that as an option, but bucket too large), larger cab, external actuation for the 3PT hitch and telescoping links on the 3PT.
The final deciding factor was the dealer service capability and distance to my location. The John Deere dealers were really not interested in selling a tractor, many times the John Deere products were just another side business in addition to motorcycles and ATVs. Their product knowledge was also lacking. Even at that, my service for the Kubota is over 100 miles away.
The primary purpose for my tractor is snow removal. I got the LandPride 74" 3PT rear facing snow blower (SB1574).
In addition, I kept the old 8' rear blade and a home made V plow that my son adapted to the front loader skid steer interface. Having almost one winter of snow removal done, I ended up using the rear blade for most of the first part of the winter.
When snow got piled up along the sides too high and it started pushing the tractor sideways, I used the V plow to widen the driveway (really an old logging road). This used just about all the tractor power and I managed to bog it down.
The last couple of snow removal events took the snow blower. I have to use it some more to get a better feel for that one, as this was done in the dark and in a hurry and I didn't get to pay too much attention to the process.
Results were quite good. I like the rear blade for the nice smooth finish it left behind. No tracks to disturb it and so the driveway ends up smoother in the winter than the rocky dirt road full of pot holes in the summer.
Starting in cold temps was another reason I went with the Kubota. Deere dealer would not commit to any temperature at which the tractor should start. Kubota told me that they have experience starting it to about 0°F. I was able to start it at -10°F, but one morning when it was -26, the starter would not turn the engine over on the first try and I didn't have the heart to try it twice. I plugged the 400 W block heater in the next day (-25°F) for 30 minutes and it started okay. No matter what, the engine sputters for the first minute or so when temps are below zero.
Blowing snow demonstrated very clearly that I will never regret getting the cab. Heat worked fine enough even in those low temp conditions and not getting covered in frigid powder snow still makes me smile.
I also use the front loader for snow removal around the house and am very happy with the reach and height of the loader. It makes great nice piles of snow.
Overall, I am very pleased with the tractor and will update when I get more hours and experience with the "dirt" and driveway maintenance in the summer.
One of the tasks is to pull large rocks from the ground. I've got forks for that so far, but if anyone has good ideas or experience, I am interested to learn.