To get you ratings and reviews of the latest models by early spring, our testers come to our mower test center in Fort Myers, Fla., To perform late winter testing on grounds that we prepare each year. We plant 1,800 pounds of grass seed (mostly annual rye, prized for its dense growth) and cut 500,000 square feet of grass in three modes: mulch, side discharge and bagging, for a total of 3,000 pounds of mowing. . We mow both flat turf and slopes to get a feel for each model and review the convenience features.
The overall score incorporates all of this performance data, as well as reliability and owner satisfaction estimates from our latest member surveys. They use data from more than 78,000 lawn mowers and tractors that members purchased between 2010 and 2020.
CR members with digital access can read ratings and reviews of the 12 best lawn tractors, zero turn mowers, and rear-engined motorcycles on the market right now. You’ll find gas-powered models from Cub Cadet, Gravely, John Deere and Toro, as well as a new battery-powered zero-turn mower from Ego.
Notes: For models with fair or poor noise level in the ear, we recommend that you use hearing protection. Additionally, CR doesn’t judge zero-turn mowers for bagging, as our research shows that only 12% of their users pack their clippings.