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You might glimpse some familiar tractor brands in videos of farmers protesting environmental initiatives across the EU. Due to typical farm size, agility, easy maintenance, and “satisfactory” capability are key. In other words, they don’t really need or want anything fancy. As such, the most popular tractors in Europe are mid-sized and two-wheel-drive. The region’s favorite brands are John Deere, New Holland, and Fendt. While these manufacturers are all connected to the U.S. somehow, only one remains fully American.

Spanish farmers drive tractors to block the border with France in protest of EU environmental initiatives two lines of tractors take up the roadway
Protesting farmers use their tractors to block the French-Spanish border on March 7, 2024 | Gaizka Iroz/AFP via Getty Images

Born in Rutland, Vermont, in 1804, blacksmith John Deere made his way to Illinois after the economy in his home region collapsed in 1836. Upon arrival in the midwest, Deere realized farmers needed a better-performing plow. 

He developed a blade that would self-scour, relieving American farmers of the frequent task of scraping soil off the bottoms of their plows.

John Deere is still headquartered in Moline, Illinois. It has factories in four states: Iowa, Georgia, Tennessee, and Wisconsin. It also has a factory in Germany.

New Holland Machine Company was founded in – you can guess it – New Holland, Pennsylvania. In 1986, Ford acquired and operated it as Ford New Holland. In 1991, Ford New Holland was sold to Fiat Geotech. The brand is now based in Turin, Italy, although it still has a presence in New Holland, PA.

Fendt has German roots dating back to 1930. The U.S. corporation AGCO acquired Fendt in 1997. However, Fendt is still headquartered in Marktoberdorf, southwest of Munch.

Sources: Deere & Company, Yahoo Finance

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