Must haves for L4701

Matt Ellerbee

Well-known member
Lifetime Member

Equipment
MX6000
Jun 27, 2019
805
665
93
Canton, Georgia
Well at only $3000 more for an MX5400 ($35/month), I went with the MX. The dealer had a 4701 and a 5400. I will pick up tractor, 10,000 pound trailer, 6’ disc, and 6’ box blade next week. I’ll go back to get the fel and a cutter whenever they come in. He said it might be a while before the fel comes in. I’ve got plenty of box blade and discing work I can do.
You’ll love the MX. Are you add any rear remotes or other items?
 

Edwardo

New member
Oct 9, 2021
7
6
3
Auburn, AL
You’ll love the MX. Are you add any rear remotes or other items?
I will get 3rd function on the loader. I really don’t think I will need rear remotes; I have done well without the need on a box blade and I don’t plan on any pull type implements. Also getting rear tires filled with water and antifreeze, rear work light, and bucket level indicator.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user

NCL4701

Well-known member

Equipment
L4701, WC68 chipper, grapple, BB1572 box scrape, Howes 500, 16kW IMD gen
Apr 27, 2020
1,022
999
113
Central Piedmont, NC
I would pass over the orphan 4701and get at least the MX or larger
If your tractor having come into the world via the “when a mommy tractor and daddy tractor like each other VERY much…” process and that connection with your tractor’s biological family is important to you, I would definitely agree you should skip over the L4701 as I can attest mine was the result of engineering and manufacturing rather than love and lust. So yes, it was an orphan before I took it in to be a part of our little family.

Regardless of its lonely pedigree, I’ve been glad to give it a home as it has been a great fit for what I needed. As cold as it probably sounds, I really only cared about the work it could do, not it’s parentage. Having an orphan has advantages. For instance, I’m able to use it every holiday every year, even Thanksgiving and Christmas, as it has no family to visit. It doesn’t have to stop mowing for an hour to talk to its mom every Sunday afternoon. Pretty sure those of you whose tractors have a relationship with their parents have some conflicts at times.

I’m good with my orphan tractor, but my 20 year old zero turn has been pretty much of a bastard from the first day I met it, so maybe parental problems are just a trend with the equipment I’m drawn to.

Seriously, anyone looking for a new utility tractor once narrowed down to one or two models from one or more manufacturer, I’d also suggest take a hard look at the next size up. If you don’t buy a piece of mechanical equipment because it’s not the best fit for your needs; perfect. If you don’t buy a piece of mechanical equipment because it’s an “orphan” good luck to you, but I don’t think there’s any help for folks that make decisions that way.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user

Cathy Liebchen

Active member

Equipment
KUBOTA L3901, MX5800, MULE PRO FX, MULE PRO FXT
If your tractor having come into the world via the “when a mommy tractor and daddy tractor like each other VERY much…” process and that connection with your tractor’s biological family is important to you, I would definitely agree you should skip over the L4701 as I can attest mine was the result of engineering and manufacturing rather than love and lust. So yes, it was an orphan before I took it in to be a part of our little family.

Regardless of its lonely pedigree, I’ve been glad to give it a home as it has been a great fit for what I needed. As cold as it probably sounds, I really only cared about the work it could do, not it’s parentage. Having an orphan has advantages. For instance, I’m able to use it every holiday every year, even Thanksgiving and Christmas, as it has no family to visit. It doesn’t have to stop mowing for an hour to talk to its mom every Sunday afternoon. Pretty sure those of you whose tractors have a relationship with their parents have some conflicts at times.

I’m good with my orphan tractor, but my 20 year old zero turn has been pretty much of a bastard from the first day I met it, so maybe parental problems are just a trend with the equipment I’m drawn to.

Seriously, anyone looking for a new utility tractor once narrowed down to one or two models from one or more manufacturer, I’d also suggest take a hard look at the next size up. If you don’t buy a piece of mechanical equipment because it’s not the best fit for your needs; perfect. If you don’t buy a piece of mechanical equipment because it’s an “orphan” good luck to you, but I don’t think there’s any help for folks that make decisions that way.
The lack of 02 model upgrades for the 4701 highlights it’s orphan status, and it’s likely to be discontinued. The reasons it is in the product line (golf courses, ability to tow with a half ton truck) are why so few people buy them
 

NCL4701

Well-known member

Equipment
L4701, WC68 chipper, grapple, BB1572 box scrape, Howes 500, 16kW IMD gen
Apr 27, 2020
1,022
999
113
Central Piedmont, NC
The lack of 02 model upgrades for the 4701 highlights it’s orphan status, and it’s likely to be discontinued. The reasons it is in the product line (golf courses, ability to tow with a half ton truck) are why so few people buy them
The only data I’ve ever even heard anything about sales numbers was in relation to the HST improper bolt torque recall PSB-2020-046 which was initially thought to impact thousands of L4701 HSTs. I don’t recall how many the initial number was.

I’ve seen enough of your posts to know you’re an intelligent person, so I’m quite sure you have the data on sales quantity and buyer demographics. It doesn’t really matter, but it is interesting since you have the sales data, how many have been sold and how many were to individuals v landscapers v golf courses? How does that compare to the MX and the other L01’s?

Also, since I’m not very educated on equipment terminology and the only definition of “orphan” I can find is a child whose parents are dead or alternatively the first line of a paragraph set as the last line of a column or page, can you please define “orphan” as it relates to equipment?
 

PaulL

Well-known member

Equipment
B2601
Jul 17, 2017
1,234
429
83
NZ
The only data I’ve ever even heard anything about sales numbers was in relation to the HST improper bolt torque recall PSB-2020-046 which was initially thought to impact thousands of L4701 HSTs. I don’t recall how many the initial number was.

I’ve seen enough of your posts to know you’re an intelligent person, so I’m quite sure you have the data on sales quantity and buyer demographics. It doesn’t really matter, but it is interesting since you have the sales data, how many have been sold and how many were to individuals v landscapers v golf courses? How does that compare to the MX and the other L01’s?

Also, since I’m not very educated on equipment terminology and the only definition of “orphan” I can find is a child whose parents are dead or alternatively the first line of a paragraph set as the last line of a column or page, can you please define “orphan” as it relates to equipment?
I suspect you're over-reading into things on an Internet forum.

The L4701 is commonly called an orphan because it's the only L tractor on that frame size - so unlike the other models where there tend to be lots of engine sizes and both luxury and economy models, or HST and gear transmissions etc, the L4701 has only that specific tractor. Also, many dealers say they don't stock it, because it's so close in price to the MX that most people buy the MX instead, unless they specifically need a smaller/lighter tractor with a lot of HP - and 47HP is a lot in that frame size.

So in that sense, orphan means it's alone. This usage is common enough - something that is on it's own is described as an orphan. For example, in Microsoft Word you can set "orphan control" which stops a single line of text being on a page on it's own - it'll pull the whole paragraph onto that page. https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/orphan refers to that usage.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user

Goz63

Well-known member

Equipment
Kubota L2501, LA525 loader, QH15,Land Pride RCR1860, BB2560, SGC0660, forks
Jun 19, 2021
270
297
63
Mississippi
Some buy tractors simply for the utilitarian value. My neighbor is like that. No attachment at all to his equipment. Buys and sells them for his needs. Think for many of us we have more of an attachment to our tractors. Me included. There is another forum thread recently where some one has an old B series tractor and compared it to the L2501. While he gave “his impressions” they were a little out of (in my opinion) what would make sense seeing as the 2501 is heavier and has a more powerful loader. Anyway it causes us to get a little defensive. I think ALL of us should be mindful of comments we make about tractors we don’t own. We buy what we buy to meet our needs. If that is not the tractor someone else has that doesn’t mean their tractor is somehow less of a machine. I am NOT promoting political correctness just to be careful. Again not too long ago some guy switched from Kubota to a Kioti and decided it was a good idea to go to the Kubota forums and say why he did that. Pretty stupid move imho. Needless to say it was kicking a hornets nest. (Which I really think was his intention).
The L4701 is a great tractor. I looked at one When I bought mine. Same as was stated, my dealer also said that for not much more money you can get the MX5400 which can do more. There is a trade off often when moving up, the tractor gets bigger. Sometimes that doesn’t work. Would LOVE to have a 4701 or 5400. Wife even said get whichever one you want. (I married up for sure) but they were too big for what I needed to get around in my barns and barnyard. So I got the 2501. Works perfect for me. So whether you have a BX or M series ya done good, it’s orange!
 
  • Like
Reactions: 4 users

NCL4701

Well-known member

Equipment
L4701, WC68 chipper, grapple, BB1572 box scrape, Howes 500, 16kW IMD gen
Apr 27, 2020
1,022
999
113
Central Piedmont, NC
most people buy the MX instead, unless they specifically need a smaller/lighter tractor with a lot of HP - and 47HP is a lot in that frame size.
That’s a succinct and accurate statement of the niche that the L4701 fits and how it differs from the MX. If the need is for more HP, specifically PTO HP, than the frame size would typically indicate due to weight being somewhat of a negative for the intended use, it’s a good fit and that’s a legitimate comparison to the next size up MX which has nominally more HP and significantly more weight. For drawbar and loader capacity, which both require weight, the MX is clearly more capable. For mowing, running PTO implements such as chipper and generator, where weight is either a non-issue or a negative, the L has some advantage in both cost and less weight.

For example if I was still pulling moldboard plows, while the L will pull a plow, it doesn’t have the weight to pull what the 47hp rating might lead one to believe so some of that 47hp is not fully utilized and therefore it wouldn’t be a good fit for that purpose, and certainly not with R4 tires. The MX would also be a much better choice for stacking round bales. However, the L4701 with R4’s causes much less damage to our numerous and steep dirt trails than our lighter 2wd R1 equipped tractors. I would expect an even heavier MX would cause more damage than the L. To rock the trails into real roads, at the time I costed materials a couple years ago prior to purchasing a new tractor, would have run around $50k just for the rock, and would have been a major project with some of them being as much as a half mile from dump truck access, so that’s not happening while there are alternatives such as running lighter 4wd equipment. However, the smaller L’s didn’t have the PTO HP to run a chipper sufficient for our needs. And I do agree, the higher HP to weight ratio of the L4701 makes it a reasonable choice for users such as golf courses and some commercial landscapers that have a need to run large finish mowers with minimal soil compaction. That doesn’t mean that’s the only scenario where a lighter higher HP machine is desirable. Not a good solution for every user, but no model is, which is why there is such a plethora of models.

That sort of true comparison is potentially useful for someone considering a L4701 v a MX5400, which seems to be a common comparison. Particularly for those new to tractors they may be fixated on HP and not considering the advantages and disadvantages of weight for their uses.

How many “sister” models are in a machine’s class isn’t useful information to determining what is a good fit for the buyer. It’s a machine, not a family. “Skip the orphan” without any explanation of why doesn’t educate the buyer on what the differences are such that they can make a more considered decision on what best fits their needs.

An explanation of weight, HP, loader capacity, and tire choices impact on the various areas of performance so a buyer can make a good decision on what best meets their needs IS useful.

It’s about like me telling someone asking about a B v a L to skip the B for a “real” tractor with no explanation of why I think the L is a better fit for their intended use. It’s just useless to them and ignores the fact that the B is a better fit for some purposes.
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user

jyoutz

Well-known member

Equipment
MX6000 HST open station, FEL, 6’ cutter, forks, 8’ rear blade, 7’ cultivator
Jan 14, 2019
567
255
63
Edgewood, New Mexico
Might as well go all the way and get the rear remotes. Will come in real handy when maintaining roads with the box blade.
A straight rear blade that offsets is better for road maintenance than a box blade.
 

jyoutz

Well-known member

Equipment
MX6000 HST open station, FEL, 6’ cutter, forks, 8’ rear blade, 7’ cultivator
Jan 14, 2019
567
255
63
Edgewood, New Mexico
The lack of 02 model upgrades for the 4701 highlights it’s orphan status, and it’s likely to be discontinued. The reasons it is in the product line (golf courses, ability to tow with a half ton truck) are why so few people buy them
I am buying an MX, but I don’t think you are correct when you say that few people buy them. Local dealers tell me they are a popular model. I went with the MX because I have more utility needs than landscaping. Landscapers and greens maintenance people love the L4701.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user

drumminj

New member

Equipment
L4701 (on order)
Nov 4, 2021
3
1
3
TN
I am buying an MX, but I don’t think you are correct when you say that few people buy them. Local dealers tell me they are a popular model. I went with the MX because I have more utility needs than landscaping. Landscapers and greens maintenance people love the L4701.
I went with the 4701 vs the 5400 (it's on order), for my 28 acres -- not a golf course. Maybe I made the wrong choice -- we'll see :)

But the dealer I ordered from had at least 3 other orders for the model when I made mine, so I don't think it's "rare", however I don't know how many 5400s they had on order either.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user

jyoutz

Well-known member

Equipment
MX6000 HST open station, FEL, 6’ cutter, forks, 8’ rear blade, 7’ cultivator
Jan 14, 2019
567
255
63
Edgewood, New Mexico
I went with the 4701 vs the 5400 (it's on order), for my 28 acres -- not a golf course. Maybe I made the wrong choice -- we'll see :)

But the dealer I ordered from had at least 3 other orders for the model when I made mine, so I don't think it's "rare", however I don't know how many 5400s they had on order either.
I think that you will love your 4701. I was wavering each way, then ended up buying a MX6000 because the dealer had one that the person who ordered it declined to buy. I take delivery around the end of the month.
 

Oliver

Active member

Equipment
L2501, JD 3520
Feb 2, 2011
515
107
43
Preston County, WV
I can see the advantages of both L47 and MX, and Kubota must also. The MX is the more capable tractor (in most measurements) and not all that much more money than an L47. But it doesn't have any more 3-point lift capacity and it's 8" wider and 8" longer than an L47 which simply wouldn't work on the trails through my property.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user

NCL4701

Well-known member

Equipment
L4701, WC68 chipper, grapple, BB1572 box scrape, Howes 500, 16kW IMD gen
Apr 27, 2020
1,022
999
113
Central Piedmont, NC
I can see the advantages of both L47 and MX, and Kubota must also. The MX is the more capable tractor (in most measurements) and not all that much more money than an L47. But it doesn't have any more 3-point lift capacity and it's 8" wider and 8" longer than an L47 which simply wouldn't work on the trails through my property.
Same reason I ended up with the L4701. After settling on brand and dealer, I bought the biggest tractor that fit the trails and tightest areas it absolutely has to go on the property.
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user

Cranblue

Member
Feb 23, 2019
55
9
8
Lincolnton NC
I went with the 4701 vs the 5400 (it's on order), for my 28 acres -- not a golf course. Maybe I made the wrong choice -- we'll see :)

But the dealer I ordered from had at least 3 other orders for the model when I made mine, so I don't think it's "rare", however I don't know how many 5400s they had on order either.
In western NC it has been a best seller for Kubota
I am buying an MX, but I don’t think you are correct when you say that few people buy them. Local dealers tell me they are a popular model. I went with the MX because I have more utility needs than landscaping. Landscapers and greens maintenance people love the L4701.
In western NC it has been one of Kubotas best sellers I dealt with three dealers all claimed a big seller !!! I choose it over a Mx 5200 that was only $1,800 more couple years ago.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user

HDB

New member

Equipment
Kubota L4701
Dec 20, 2021
5
3
3
SC
I bought a L4701 several months ago, and I love it. I have not had any situation come up, were I thought, I need more tractor. When using either the front end loader, 6' grapple, bush hog, or box blade, it has performed as well as I could have expected.
Here in South Carolina we have had a lot of rain since I bought my tractor, and the L4701 with the R4 tires have been very easy on my lawn, where the heavier tractor would probably have made a mess.
Good Tractoring!
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user