Friday, 28 June 2013
John Deere Gator 12v - Review
My boys have had ride-on quads for about 18 months and they LOVE them BUT the batteries have gone and they are not the fastest quads on the planet for two 'adventurous' boys with a lot of space in their garden! And so..........they now have a John Deere Gator which we brought pre-loved from a friend. This model has been superceeded by the HPX which apparently has a longer ride-time....but don't tell the boys!
We didn't tell them they were getting it and given that it was a pretty expensive gift, even pre-loved, we hoped that it would go down well. And it did!!!The boys were ecstatic and have spent the whole of the weekend 'pottering' around the garden / field.
The Gator is recommended for children between the age of 2 and 8. A 2 year old would not be able to drive the vehicle so I am presuming that they would be the passenger of course. Sam is almost 7 and reasonably tall for his age. He does look a little 'big' on it but this has not crossed his mind at all. At the moment it's fast enough to placate his 'need for speed'. Their 7 year old friend (pictured above) has also been round for a test drive and had plenty of 'leg room'. Harry is 4 and can easily drive the Gator. None required any tuition on driving- it's not rocket science!
The Gator has 2 gears - 2.5mph and 4.5mph. It also has a reverse which the boys loved! It goes well on grass (flat and meadow) and gravel due to it's 'extreme' tyres which are plastic and knobbly. I presume of course that concrete would be fantastic BUT we don't have any (much to the boy's disappointment!). I was surprised at how well the Gator tackled the field part of our garden...great for flattening mole hills!
There are two seats - either child can use the pedal and the gears as these are centrally situated but only one can steer. I was concerned that this might cause an argument or two but so far so good (pretty sure that this won't last!). The seats are made out of what can only be described as 'strong stuff'...they will last forever!
One of the benefits of picking a ride-on like this is the mini dump-bed with integrated tailgate. On the side, there are two buttons, an 'up' and a 'down' which allow the This has given the boys hours and hours of fun.....moving bark-chip, wheel barrows and bits of wood from one area of the garden to another. We are in the process of trying to persuade them to move stones from the stone pile to spread out over the drive but so far they would rather move their own 'stuff'....bother!
Cost (new) :- from around £350 (not confirmed)
Pros : - goes everywhere, has room for luggage, carries 2 children, well built
Cons :- not the cheapest ride-on option
Summary :- Our two boys LOVE it and I envisage many hour of fun ahead of us this summer. Buying pre-loved made this a good buy and they obviously hold their value so I think we will be able to sell on in a few years without losing a lot of money!