John Deere 316

The John Deere 316 is the baby brother of the highly popular JD 318. Much of this ride on lawnmower used the same parts and components as the 318 but the 316 was still marketed as the ‘smaller’ or ‘lighter’ version. It was produced in Horicon, Wisconson in the US from ’84 to ’92 and came with a choice of 2 slightly different Onan engines; the Onan P218 and the Onan P218G. The P218 was a 2 cylinder, 0.8 liter gasoline engine providing 18 hp. While the P218G was a 2 cylinder, gasoline, 0.7 liter engine providing 18 hp as well. Both transfer power through a hydrostatic transmission which has an infinite number of gears in both forward and reverse. Why they have used 2 very similar engines providing the same hp in the one lawn mower remains a mystery.

The fuel tank on the 316 can hold a maximum of 17 liters (4.5 US gallons) of fuel, while it has a mower deck that can be up to 48 inches in size allowing for a very large area to be covered. The John Deere 316 lawnmower has a length of 1.76 m (69.5 inches) and it’s widest section (without mowing deck) is 1.09 m (43.3 inches). However depending on the mower deck attached, it’s maximum width can increase quite a bit. It also has a very respectable turning radius of 0.6 m (25 inches) making it quite dexterous and nimble in tight areas.

Like many JD models of lawn mower, the John Deere 316 can take a wide variety of attachments, including snow blowers/throwers and snow blades/plows. Obviously operating the 316 in freezing cold weather is not ideal, so you have the option of a Femco cab weather enclosure to keep you dry and reasonably warm. When all is said and done, the JD 316 is truly a fantastic tractor. It is just as powerful as it’s older brother, but when it was sold new by John Deere, it carried a smaller price tag, meaning that for less cash upfront, you were getting the same amount of power.

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4 Reviews of the “John Deere 316”

  1. Wulf Bandelow says:

    Very good

    Year of Manufacture: 1987
    Pros: The 316 is a great alll around good small tractor. It’s handles well and has great speed control. I would recommend it to any one with a say 1/2 or more acarage to mow.
    Cons: None I.m totally happy with JD
    Attachments: 48″ mowing deck, grader blade.
    Modifications: none

  2. Frank Jadron says:

    very good . I would like to add one more fact about difference between 316 and 318. 318 comes with power steering 316 does not.

    Year of Manufacture: 1988
    Cons: no 2 stage snow blower

  3. Matt Marshall says:

    I’ve been cutting grass on my almost 1 acre lot, and plowing the snow off my and a neighbors drive ways for several years.

    Year of Manufacture: 1988
    Pros: I bought this older JD 316 from its original owner a few years back. The original owner maintained it well until the last few years when he became ill. Even so, all I’ve done since getting it is power washed the engine, changed the oil, replaced all filters, and flushed the transmission fluid. Otherwise, after the initial maintenance, this has been a hands off tractor all the way.

    Excellent performance overall (that includes some relatively steep inclines on my property, which only require modest slow down in speed to climb and cut).

    It always fires right up for me, and never stalls. And finally, all safety mechanisms work as expected, cutting power to the mowing deck, and or the engine entirely as necessary.

    Cons: Not the worst in terms of fuel efficiency, but I’ve seen better.
    Attachments: 46″ mowing deck
    54″ dirt/snow plow
    48″ snow thrower
    Modifications: None

  4. Mark says:

    Best mower I’ve owned (and I’ve had quite a few, all brands)

    Year of Manufacture: 1992
    Pros: Very quiet, very reliable. Smoothe cutting, excellent turning radius
    Cons: None

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