Deere to Bring Fully Autonomous Tractor to Market This Year

The largest farm equipment manufacturer in the world unveiled a fully autonomous tractor, propelling it past rivals in the tech space

A fully autonomous tractor is debuted during a John Deere live-streamed event at the CES 2022 trade show in Las Vegas, Nevada, U.S., on Tuesday, Jan. 4, 2022.
By Joe Deaux
January 05, 2022 | 10:36 AM

Bloomberg — Self-driving vehicles are moving off the roads and onto the fields.

Deere & Co. (DE:UN), the largest farm equipment manufacturer in the world, unveiled a fully autonomous tractor on Tuesday, propelling it past rivals in the tech space.

The company introduced the technology on its iconic 8 series tractor, which it says can be controlled from farmers’ mobile phones. Humans will need to transport the machine to a field and configure it for an autonomous run, but then they can let the tractor plant seeds, spray nutrients and harvest crops down to one inch of accuracy without touching a steering wheel, the company said.

The announcement, made at CES 2022, thrusts Moline, Illinois-based Deere further into so-called precision agriculture -- a key way for farmers to improve harvests without using more labor. The autonomous tractor will be available for purchase later this year.

“Without this self-driving technology, farming is incredibly exhausting mentally and physically,” Jahmy Hindman, Deere’s chief technology officer, said during a CES presentation in Las Vegas. “You’ll find some of the most advanced robotic machines are being used on the farm to feed the world.”