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By: CJ Rena Johnson

John Deere

2011 John Deere Gator XUV 855D 4x4: Crossover for the New Year

2011 John Deere Gator XUV 855D 4x4
2011 John Deere Gator XUV 855D 4x4

2011 John Deere Gator XUV 855D 4x4

2011 John Deere Gator XUV 855D 4x4 tailgate
2011 John Deere Gator XUV 855D 4x4 tailgate

2011 John Deere Gator XUV 855D 4x4 bench seats
2011 John Deere Gator XUV 855D 4x4 bench seats

Work hard. Play hard. Get the job done. What more could anyone want for a new year? The John Deere Gator XUV 855D is the machine to make all of those things possible. We found that out early at the media event held at Carolina Adventure World in Winnsboro, SC.

Eye Catching

The 855D model was the most eye catching of all the models at the media event. It has a unique design that I have never quite seen on a vehicle like this before. At first glance, it seems a little standard until you put the accessories on it and then it takes on the resemblance of something right off the Jetsons. If they wanted to hit the trails, I think they would do it in a John Deere 855D with all the accessories on it. Therefore, here on present day earth, the more rounded roll bars provide the perfect fit for some great doors and windscreens to turn this work vehicle into a completely enclosed and state-of-the-art looking cab.

The Gator XUV 855D comes in the well-known John Deere Green and Yellow or the Olive and Black color scheme or in the REALTREE HARDWOODS HD® pattern. All three are recognizable as a John Deere product as far as the eye can see.

Conquering Difficult Terrain

Carolina Adventure World offers a variety of terrain, and we experienced some of all they have to offer when we test drove the new John Deere XUVs. Although the top speed for the 855D is only 32 MPH, this model seemed to be the one with the most power going up all of the hills we encountered. The 854cc, 4-cycle, 3-cylinder diesel engine is the one to have if you need to get a heavy load up a trail or steep hill out on the farm. Shifting will not be a concern with the two-range CVT transmission, so you can concentrate on the more important aspects of your day.

If the terrain turns rougher or muddier, you can switch over to 4-wheel drive with the push of a switch. For the even more difficult spots, you can lock in the rear differential so the rear drive wheels work together to overcome even those rocky areas you might come across. Eleven inches of ground clearance keeps you from bottoming out in those areas as well. The full-steel skid plates guard underbody protects your machine even when it does bottom out. Water crossings up to 22 inches are not a problem either due to the fully enclosed clutch.

Regardless of the terrain, stability is always important. The independent double-wishbone long-travel suspension with 8-inches of travel in the front and 9-inches in the back along with the 11 inches of ground clearance makes this one of the best qualities about this machine. The 99-inch wheelbase, 62-inch wide stance and low center of gravity puts the 855D right up there with the highest ranked vehicle in the industry for stability.


Of all the crossover vehicles on the market today, the two closest competitors to the John Deere 855D are the Polaris Ranger Diesel side-x-side and the Bobcat 3400 Diesel utility vehicle.

The horsepower and displacement of each of these vehicles are very similar with the John Deere having 24.6 hp with 854cc displacement. The Bobcat 3400 has 24.8 hp with 903cc displacement and the Polaris Ranger diesel has 24 hp with 904cc displacement.

The overall weights of the three vehicles vary with the Bobcat 3400 and the John Deere 855D being the closest at 1,650 lb. and the 3400 at 1610 lb. The Polaris Ranger weighs only 1,435 lb.

The fuel capacity for the Bobcat 3400 and the Polaris Ranger is 9 gallons, while the John Deere only holds 5.3 gallons.

The John Deere 855D has a larger cargo capacity than either of the other two of these competitors with  45 inches in length, 52 inches wide, and 12 inches deep total while the Bobcat 3400 and the Polaris Ranger both have cargo dimensions of 36.5 inches in length, 54 inches in width and 11.5 inches deep. The cargo weight capacity is very similar with the Bobcat having a 1,100 lb limit, and the John Deere and Polaris maxing out at 1,000 lb each. The overall payload capacity of the Bobcat 3400 is 1600 lb., the Polaris Ranger is 1500 lb., and the John Deere Payload Capacity is 1400 lb. The towing capacity for the Bobcat and the John Deere are both 1,500 lb. and the Polaris Ranger towing capacity is 2,000 lb.

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