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15 Top Zero-Turn Mowers | Includes 3 Electric and 3 Gas-powered

There are more than 260 Zero-Turn Mower models in the United States of America. Selecting the right one for your needs can be challenging.

The zero-turn mowers’ agility, speed, and performance make them a favorite among home gardeners and commercial lawncare operators. We reviewed the 15 top zero-turn mower brands and their flagship products and selected three EVs and three gas-powered zero-turn mower top dogs.

15 Top Zero-Turn Mower Brands, We Review the Top 6

Below is an alphabetized list of the top zero-turn mower brands. More brands could be added, but these are the top contenders for your dollar spend.

  1. Ariens
  2. Bad Boy
  3. Bobcat
  4. Country Clipper
  5. Craftsman
  6. Cub Cadet
  7. Ego Power
  8. Ferris
  9. Gravely
  10. John Deere
  11. Kubota
  12. Ryobi
  13. Scag
  14. Simplicity
  15. Toro
CRAFTSMAN v20 Battery-Powered Elect...
CRAFTSMAN v20 Battery-Powered Electric Mower: 2022 Review

What to Consider when Choosing a Zero-Turn Mower

Choosing Between an Electric or Gas Powered Zero-Turn Mower

As mentioned above, we reviewed both gas-powered and electrical zero-turn mowers.

The electric (battery) ZTRs are a bit pricier, but their savings add up over a year or two, and in the long run, they save money and the planet and are much quieter than gas-powered zero-turn mowers.

Also, because each wheel is independently motorized, you don’t have the potential hassles with hydrostatic transmissions.

Still, the gas-powered units have a power advantage, though, with emerging EV technologies, a 36-horsepower electric zero-turn mower is fast becoming standard. The short-term price difference is still a factor, and the bigger gas-powered zero-turn mowers are about half the price of their electric counterparts.

Mowing Deck Widths and Construction Types

This review focused on units that can cut a swath of between 42- and 56-inches per pass. The logic is that if you want anything more significant, say 60 to 70-inches, we’re entering the terrain of commercial-sized machines.

However, getting anything smaller than a 48-inch deck is uneconomical – still expensive but less effective.

I prefer a medium machine that doesn’t weigh a ton, won’t compact my soil, and will still handle acreage with slopes or uneven terrain.

These are personal opinions, and you will have to consider your factors – such as:

  • Acreage – the size of the property
  • Terrain – mostly flat, slight slopes, some uneven terrain
  • Obstacles – small obstacles, trees, mulch beds, gates, rough grass, bigger obstacles (pools)
  • Features you value – Anti-scalping wheels, armrests, cruise control, front-end protection, deck-type
  • The storage you have available for your machine
  • Attachments you may want to use
  • Price Range
  • Fuel Source – Battery or Gasoline

Matching Your Zero-Turn Mower to the Acreage Needing Mowing

Given the variable discussed above, a rule of thumb would be:

  • A 42-inch decked ZTR mower can easily handle anything under two acres
  • The closer you get to two acres, you might consider a 46-inch zero-turn mower
  • For more than 2 acres, start looking at a 50-inch zero-turn mower
  • Over 3 acres, toward 4 acres, you will be wise to get a 54-inch zero-turn mower. The blade count typically increases as the width increases, especially with zero-turn mowers. This means the mower’s speed can also increase, making the whole job much faster.
  • If you have hilly terrain with slopes over 15 degrees, consider getting a zero-turn mower with a slip differential to retain traction on both wheels.

Guidelines for Time vs. Acreage

  • A 42-inch lawn tractor will mow about 1 acre an hour at 3 to 4 miles per hour. A 42-inch zero-turn mower will mow an extra half acre, i.e., 1.5 acres in the same hour – 50% more.
  • A 48-52 inch zero-turn will mow about 3 acres in the same hour.

Zero-Turn Mower Deck Types

  • For smooth grass, stamped decks are okay, and they are less expensive but still perform admirably in the mowing department.
  • Mowers with constructed decks are a good value for homeowners who want a mower that cuts well, handles rough lawns, and is durable.
  • Heavy-duty constructed decks are suitable for large estates, farms, lawns, and ditches and for mowing pastures.

Zero-Turn Mowers Save 50% on Mowing Times

The size of an area you can mow in an hour is a product of the deck width and the drive-train (transmission) speed. We’ve included a helpful table that shows how your mowing speed and deck width will affect the acres per hour you can mow.

A loss factor of 15% is included for overlapping and non-productive turning. Smaller decks don’t have the blade efficiency built in to run at higher speeds.

To calculate the acres-per-hour advantage offered by a zero-turn mower, the following info will help: inches per mile = 63,360; square inches per acre = 6,272,640. Alternatively, use the table below instead.

How Do Deck Sizes and Zero-Turn Mower Speeds Affect Efficiency?

If you’re mowing at five mph, i.e., you’re covering 5 x 63,360 inches per hour = 316 800 inches per hour (speed)

If your deck is cutting 36-inches wide, i.e., you’re mowing 36 x 316 800 inches per hour = 11,404,800 square inches

Convert that to acres = 11,404,800 divided by the number of sq. in. in an acre (6,272,640)

=11,404,800 / 6,272,640 = 1.81 acres per hour

To make an allowance for obstacles, factor in a 15% loss in efficiency:

1.81 x 0.85 = 1.54 acres per hour for a 36-inch deck traveling at a minimal five mph.

I’ve repeated the calculation above for zero-turn mowers with different deck sizes traveling at different speeds. Below is a table reflecting the acreage a ZTR mower can mow, depending on the deck size and the speed traveled.

Zero-Turn Mower Acres Per Hour

See how the combination of deck size and speed influences the acreage that can be covered in an hour. This table has a 15% allowance for possible obstacles and other delays.

Deck Size5 mph6 mph7 mph8 mph9 mph10 mph11 mph
 36-inches          1.54         1.85                                        
 41-inches          1.76         2.11         2.46         2.82                     
 48-inches          2.06         2.47         2.88         3.30                        
 51-inches          2.19         2.63         3.07         3.50         3.94         4.38        
 52-inches          2.23         2.68         3.13         3.57         4.02         4.46        
 61-inches          2.62         3.14         3.67         4.19         4.71         5.24         5.76
 72-inches          3.09         3.71         4.33         4.95         5.56         6.18         6.80

The Top 3 Gas Powered Zero-Turn Mowers

We reviewed more than 350 mowers from the top 15 zero-turn mower brands to select their best product. We then shortlisted the TOP THREE GAS-POWERED ZERO-TURN MOWERS.

They are:

  • Bronze Medalist: Scag
  • Silver Medalist: Ferris
  • Gold Medal winner: Bobcat

This section contains information to help you choose your first or next zero-turn mower. Enjoy!

1. BOBCAT

The name Bobcat is synonymous with skid-steer compact loaders. The brand has a reputation for ruggedness, agility, and versatility, fosters a sense of pride, and inspires confidence on even the most challenging job sites.

North American operations are headquartered in West Fargo, North Dakota, with manufacturing and engineering facilities in Gwinner, Bismarck, downtown Fargo, and Wahpeton.

They also have North Carolina, Wisconsin, and Minnesota facilities alongside global offices, allowing them to expand their reach worldwide.

Simplify Gardening’s Choice

With Bobcat, we’re again looking at the 48-inch deck – and they’re looking good. Bobcat has two 48-inch offerings; price and drive transmission are the main difference.

FeatureBobcat ZT3500
Mower DeckTufDeck™ Pro 10-gauge Top with 7-gauge Spindle Supports; 7-gauge Side Skirts
Cutting Height1.5-4.875
Engine Size726 cm³
Cutting Width48-inches
Adjustable Scalp Rollers3
Engine ModelKawasaki FR651V
Transmission TypeHG ZT-3400 Hydrostatic Transaxles – 500 lb/ft
Drive-Train SpecificationHG ZT-3400
Pump Displacement0.73 in3 /rev [12 cc/rev]
Motor Displacement0.97 in3 /rev [16 cc/rev
Input Speeds Max Hi-Idle (no load) Min (loaded)  3600 rpm 1800 rpm
Output Torqueup to 500 lb-ft [up to 677 Nm]
Speedup to 10 mph [up to 16 kph]
Gross Vehicle Weightup to 1600 lbs [725 kg]
Axle Shaft Diameter1.125 in [28.56 mm]
Axle Shaft End OptionsTapered 4-bolt Flange 5-bolt Flange
Weight of Unit34.5 lbs [15.6 kg]

So we see that the speed drops by a mile per hour, gross vehicle weight by 300-pounds – and the price drops from $8,269 to $6,599. I’m not the largest man, so the weight drop is acceptable. I’m sad about the speed loss, but it’s not a dealbreaker for me – $6,600 sounds good to me.

CHECK OUT PRICING INFORMATION

2. FERRIS

Ferris® ZTR mowers, equipped with patented technology, offer a consistent cut with added operator comfort and productivity. Their philosophy is: Work Hard. Feel Good.

Ferris zero-turn mowers are popular among landscape contractors. A Ferris zero-turn mower with suspension technology is a great choice when you have a lot of ground to cover, and productivity is vital.

From their top-of-the-line IS® 6200 with a 48 hp* CAT® turbo diesel to our excellent value and compact F60, they have a full range of models to choose from.

Simplify Gardening Choice

There are two 48″ ZTR zero-turn mowers available from the Ferris stable. We liked the more expensive IS 600

This mower will give you all you’re looking for, featuring their patented suspension technology, heavy-duty Hydro-Gear® ZT-3200® Drive System, and speeds up to 10 mph. The IS® 600 can tackle tight places, providing maximum maneuverability and productivity.

Ferris IS 600 Features

  • Debris Management – Briggs & Stratton® Commercial Series engines are built for extreme conditions with an advanced debris management system and beefed-up cylinder block structure.
  • Operator Convenience – Ergonomic zero-turn mower control panel features cup-holder and fuel gauge.
  • Patented Suspension – The suspension system consists of rear coil-over-shocks and pivoting front axle with shocks.
  • Warranties – Coil-Over-Shocks and all suspension-related components are covered for unlimited hours for five years (60 months). We are committed to providing performance, productivity, and durability.
  • Exceptional Performance – The well-tuned steering system delivers smooth and confident operation for excellent performance.
  • Integrated Transmissions – Commercial Hydro-Gear® ZT-3200®  transaxles are designed for high performance and are fully serviceable.
  • Easy Access – Quick removal of the floor pan provides convenient access to the top of the deck for easy cleaning and service
  • Protection – Heavy-duty bumper protects the engine while also allowing for easy service access
  • Smooth Controls – Smooth, precision controls last longer as a result of pillow block bearings on control mounts
  • Mower Spindles – Cast-aluminum greaseable spindles feature a 1-inch shaft with 2.5″ x 1″ dual ball bearings, full access grease fittings, and a pressure relief valve.
  • Cut Height – Foot-operated deck lift, with adjustable pedal, can change cut height in 1/4″ increments from 1.5″- 4.5″
  • Acres Per Hour – Mows up to 4 acres per hour, based on 80% efficiency
  • Miles Per Hour – Forward ground speeds up to 10 mph, reverse 5 mph.

CHECK OUT PRICING INFORMATION

3. SCAG POWER EQUIPMENT

Since 1983, Scag Power Equipment has manufactured “Simply the Best” commercial zero-turn, stand-on, and walk-behind lawn mowers money can buy. Scag’s innovation and attention to quality are known and respected throughout the industry. According to Scag, they’re it if you’re looking for the highest-quality, best-built, best-cutting, USA-built lawn mower.

Scag Power Equipment has grown from a single model, a gear-drive rider, to over 50 models today, becoming one of the world’s largest independent commercial mowing equipment manufacturers.

Simplify Gardening Choice

I’ve decided to go for the SCAG Liberty Z SZL-48H-21FR with the 48″ Heavy-Duty Hero Cutter Deck, the 21 HP Kawasaki® FR651 engine, and the Hydro-Gear ZT2800 Transaxle drive system. Though it was third on the list of great gas-powered zero-turn mowers, it could just as easily have been first.

Of course, SCAG also has the EVZ electric SCAG zero-turn mower that, as far as EVs go, is competitively priced (about $15k less than the Toro or Gravely).

Important Considerations When Buying an Electric Zero-Turn Mower

Despite being more expensive, most consumers prefer electric zero-turn mowers to gas ones. When used in residential locations, they have several significant advantages over gas.

Their electric motors don’t emit pollution or gases, are substantially quieter, and don’t need regular maintenance as engines do.

Let’s delve deeper and go through the specifics to provide a more thorough explanation of what factors into the decision between gas and electricity.

Electric Zero Turn Mower Benefits

Whether a standard push mower or a sit-on mower, using an electric mower has several benefits.

Battery-powered zero-turn mowers are an excellent option for anyone interested in utilizing more ecologically friendly equipment because they have no gas engines and emit no emissions thanks to their rechargeable electric battery.

They don’t require much maintenance, no oil changes, new fuel filters, spark plugs, or drive belts, making them a low-maintenance engine-free option. This allows you to concentrate more on the actual task of mowing and spend less time fiddling with it.

Just to be clear again because it sounds so good:

Zero carbon emissions, cleaner, greener, quieter, no smell of exhaust, no oil change, no engine upkeep. Is this a dream? Not at all; it’s real.

Gas Vs. Electric

The power sources that drive various zero-turn mower models and manufacturers vary, and you might prefer one power source over the other, depending on your preferences. Many different brands and types are available, but historically, gasoline-powered zero-turn mowers have been the best. However, as technology advances, battery-powered devices get better every year.

Battery Powered

Powerful, rechargeable, deep-cycle AGM/FLA lead-acid batteries or lithium-ion batteries power the motor of electric zero-turn mowers.

Technology has advanced significantly since gasoline engines outpowered lithium batteries.

Homeowners now have easier access to this environmentally friendly substitute, which works just as well as household gas models.

Are Electric Zero Turn Mowers Better Than Gas?

Electric zero-turn mowers are the future mowers for domestic and contractors. The low-noise, clean technology will succeed in society. Electric zero-turn mowers are superior to gas ones for up to 2.5 acres. Gas zero-turn mowers used to be tough to beat for commercial use, but that is fast changing as EV technology improves.

Motor Power & Batteries

The motor power and battery runtime of this kind of zero-turn mower are two of the most important aspects to consider. Your mower’s efficiency depends on how it manages its power over time.

Brushless motors are a feature of the most terrific electric zero-turn mowers. These motors are easier to maintain than brushed motors, are lighter and smaller, and work well at any speed setting.

Maximum Speed

The mower will move forward faster the more you move the steering levers forward. Most kinds of gas and electric zero-turn mowers have a top speed of between 7 to 11 mph, which is roughly twice as fast as most riding or lawn tractors.

Battery Power, Charging

The amount of electricity your mower needs and how long it lasts before running out depends on its size and weight. An ordinary 120V power outlet can be used to charge electric zero-turn lawn mowers, and each model has a different charge time.

Lead-acid or lithium-ion batteries may be preferable, but each has advantages and disadvantages.

Although it costs more upfront, lithium-ion batteries often last the entire life of the mower.

Additionally, they benefit from maintaining their stored energy when standing.

Regularly, lithium batteries can discharge 85% of their stored energy in a single use without losing any of the battery’s storage capacity.

Sealed lead-acid batteries are inexpensive but will need to be replaced more frequently. If the mower and battery are not used, they also lose charge while stored, and this isn’t a big problem if you recharge it at the start of the season.

Battery Run Time

The most common range for electric zero-turn mower battery power is 75 to 100 amp hours (Ah). Fueled by a 75 Ah battery, a mower with 75 amps power can run for 60 minutes. Therefore, a greater Ah battery will provide more power for extended periods.

A typical 75 Ah battery will typically last for 2 acres, whereas a 100 Ah battery will last for 3 acres. However, depending on how you drive and the state of the grass, various things will affect the battery’s overall run time.

Riding an electric zero-turn mower uphill than running on flat ground will require greater power output and battery power.

Long grass or soft ground will make the mower work harder, reducing battery life, as does over-throttling. That said, most electric zero-turn mowers are fitted with intelligent software that adjusts mower and blade speed to changing environments.

Most control panels indicate battery life that counts the hours you operate the mower. This option is crucial for those who want to monitor their progress before charging their battery once more and gauge when it has to be replaced.

The Top 3 Electric Zero-Turn Mowers

An increasing number of brands are entering the competitive EV zero-turn market, trying to outdo their competition. This bodes well for consumers, as electric power tools are less noisy, an essential factor in urban environments.

 We then shortlisted the TOP THREE ELECTRIC ZERO-TURN MOWERS.

They are:

  • Bronze Medalist: EGO
  • Silver Medalist: Mean Green Machines
  • Gold Medal winner: Toro

This section contains information to help you choose your first or next zero-turn mower. Enjoy!

MowerToro Z RevolutionMean Green RivalEGO ZT4201E-L
Cut Width48″52″42″
Battery Type23.4kWh14.5 kWh48V ARC
Battery Ahn/asix 12Ah batteries.
Run Time7 hours7.25 hrs.Up to 2.5 Acres
Deck Type10 Ga. Fabricated7 Ga. Fabricated13 Ga. Stamp
Speed12 mph11.5 mph8 mph
Warranty2-year unlimited / 5-year or 1500 hours2-year or 1200 hours5-year unlimited

1. TORO

Toro celebrated its first century in 2014 as a leading global provider of innovative outdoor environment solutions. Their new Toro Z Master Revolution is set to take the company into the next evolutionary phase.

The brains of the Z Master Revolution help deliver unprecedented control, allowing you to set blade-tip speed and maximum drive speed. Patent pending software in the drive-lever controls enables smooth, reliable handling.

Make the deck rake angle fit your need by enabling more clippings to exit the back of the deck during mulching. An increased deck rake angle will help extend runtimes. Alternately, reduce the deck rake to improve performance and provide the best cut possible under most circumstances.

2. Mean Green Machine

The RIVAL is a full-featured, commercial electric mower that offers up to 7 hours of continuous mowing time, the choice of a 52″ or 60″ deck, speeds up to 11.5 mph, and horsepower comparable to a 36 HP gas mower. With all the power of gas and none of the hassles, the RIVAL is a pleasure to operate.

  • Evolution Series ZTR Riding Mowers
  • 52″ or 60″ Cutting Width
  • Battery Options: 14.5 kWh, 22 kWh
  • 36 HP equivalent
  • Up to 7.25 hours per charge
  • Speeds up to 11.5 mph

Designed with maximum power in mind, Mean Green has combined time-tested planetary gearing and the latest electric hub motor technology. Their impressive, leading-edge Impulse Drive System (IDS)™ generates unrivaled power and weight carrying capacity. It’s the equivalent of a 36 HP diesel mower with a forward ground speed of 0 – 11.5 MPH in 1.3 seconds.

Their SmartDeck™ rapid height deck lift system can be operated with the push of a button or no-strain foot pedal. When approaching curbs or obstacles, a simple touch of the electronic foot pedal will elevate the deck within 2.8 seconds!

3. EGO ZT4201E-L

Delivering the equivalent power of a 22-horsepower petrol engine, with none of the emissions, the Z6 covers up to 2.5 acres on a single charge with six 12Ah batteries. You can tailor the combination of batteries exactly to match the size of your lawn and how you prefer to cut your grass – unlike any other battery-powered ZTR on the market.

The industry’s fastest charger fully charges 4 x 10Ah in just 2 hours, 4x faster than any of the competition, while the four independent brushless motors deliver the power and performance of petrol to get the job done. It reaches a top speed of 8MPH and will cover up to 2.5 acres on a single charge with six 12Ah batteries.

The LCD screen is intuitive, allowing you to control the mower’s speed, mode, and cutting speed, plus you can see exactly how much charge you have left.

Choose between three driving modes.

  • Standard – everyday tasks
  • Control – perfect for users new to zero-turn mowers
  • Sport – great for precision cuts around sharp turns

The EGO zero-turn mower also has Bluetooth connectivity, so you can enable a remote key from your mobile, take complete control of your mowing experience, monitor your battery, and download firmware updates to receive the latest features.

Conclusion

Selecting the best out of 260-plus excellent machines is no simple task. We believe your best option is to work through the information in this article and choose what will best suit you.

Investing in a zero-turn mower will bring you years of satisfaction, whatever brand you opt for. It’s pricey, but what would work is shared ownership. A zero-turn mower is so productive that it could easily keep the lawns of multiple properties in shape without breaking a sweat.

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