Best known for their use on farms and golf courses, John Deere’s Gator® off-road utility vehicles, which can travel up to 18 miles per hour, were enlisted for more patriotic duties following the attacks on the United States on September 11, 2001.
Forty-four Gators were sent to New York City to assist workers at the World Trade Center site in lower Manhattan. The company also sent 10 Gators to help in the rescue and recovery effort at the Pentagon outside Washington, DC, while others were sent to the rough terrain of Afghanistan for the war on terrorism.
John Deere, which has been manufacturing Gator utility vehicles for nearly a decade, was no stranger to powder coating, having used the environmentally compliant technology on Gators and other heavy equipment in its extensive line.
A new electrodeposition coating, or E-coat, is now used as the primer on all Gators. This technology, when combined with powder coating, provides benefits not only to John Deere, but to its customers and the environment as well.
The E-coat and TGIC polyester powder finish used on the Gators offer superior corrosion and chip resistance–key issues for these vehicles, which are used in a wide range of harsh climatic situations.
“Gator utility vehicles are exposed to many different conditions ranging from cold temperatures in the north, to salty beaches and hot weather, to fertilizer on golf courses,” said a spokesman for the John Deere Vehicle Group. In addition, a special Gator, dubbed M-Gator®, is used by the U.S. military.
With this special powder coating and E-coat combination, John Deere Gators have an “automotive quality” finish. Colors include well-known “John Deere green,” “work site yellow,” “olive drab” and black.
Another bonus is excellent UV protection, which means Gator utility vehicles will retain that “just-off-the-line” appearance for a longer time.