John Deere has topped the sales charts once again, maintaining its position as the UK’s leading tractor brand.

Figures released last week by the Agricultural Engineers Association confirm that Deere continued its dominance in 2004 with over a quarter of the market, having held the top spot since 1998.

New Holland follows on the American giant’s heels with its sales accounting for more than 20% of tractors registered in 2004.

Massey Ferguson rounds up the “Big Three” with a 15.3% slice of the cake.

It is the top end of the league that appears most stable.

The middle and bottom of the table is where the upsets seem to happen.

Following its resurrection in 2001, McCormick has risen through the ranks fast and beat Case into fourth place for the first time in 2004.

Case has suffered since its merger with New Holland in 1999.

At that point its sales accounted for nearly a fifth of the market and the company occupied third position in the table.

It now sells less than 8% of the UK’s tractors and has slumped to fifth in the league.

Renault (now Claas) strengthened its position, leap-frogging Valtra.

However sales volumes and share were down for the French manufacturer – a trend Claas will be keen to reverse.

As usual the “Others” category – those companies which choose not subscribe to the AEA – accounts for about 10% of sales.

 The key contributors being Zetor and Same Deutz Fahr (SDF).

Zetor says it sold 366 tractors in 2004 – a number that would equate to 2.4% of total sales.

With Same, Lamborgini and Deutz Fahr, SDF claims a 4.3% share of 2004’s tractor registrations, with the Same brand leading the field.

Lumping brands together under their parent companies’ banner presents a different overall picture. Looking at it this way, Case New Holland (CNH Global) fills the top spot, Deere shifts to second and Agco (Massey Ferguson, Fendt, Valtra and Challenger) grabs third place.

out of date?

You’ll note that the figures relate to 2004 tractor sales.

Annoyingly an EU ruling dictates that market share statistics must be published one year in arrears.

The European Commission argues that this ensures the best possible deals for machinery buyers because competing firms do not have access to up-to-date market share information and are therefore unable to fix or inflate prices accordingly.

fwmachinery@rbi.co.uk


Tractor sales league table
Manufacture
2002
2003
2004
  Units % of total Units % of total Units % of total
John Deere 4110 27.8 % 3939 26.2 % 4301 27.7 %
New Holland 2816 19.1 % 3335 22.2 % 3189 20.6 %
Massey Ferguson 2615 17.7 % 2299 15.3 % 2382 15.4 %
McCormick 877 5.9 % 1060 7 % 1241 8 %
Case 1355 9.2 % 1345 8.9 % 1227 7.9 %
Renault (now Class) 563 3.8 % 543 3.6 % 500 3.2 %
Valtra 457 3.1 % 586 3.9 % 484 3.1 %
Fendt 220 1.5 % 314 2.1 % 362 2.3 %
JCB 289 2 % 268 1.8 % 303 2 %
Others 1459 9.9 % 1351 9 % 1528 9.8 %
Total Units 14,761   15,043   15,518  
N.B. Data includes compact Tractors (<=40 hp) and agricultural tractors (>40hp)