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Small model toy tractors have been on the market since the 1920’s but pedal tractors were not produced until the late 1940’s. The first pedal tractor, a John Deere Model A was produced by Eska in 1949. It is prized by collectors and can bring a high price in good condition. Ertl came out with pedal tractors shortly after Eska and continues to produce them today. Scale Models has also manufactured pedal tractors since the 1980’s in their U.S. based plant.
Since the 1970’s pedal tractors have enjoyed renewed popularity mostly due to their collectability. Today approximately sixty percent of all pedal tractors are sold to collectors. The other forty percent are sold for use by children. Collecting and use of these mini tractors as riding toys are not mutually exclusive. Kids can enjoy riding them and the value will still increase over time if they are not abused.
Kids love pedal tractors, in part because they are much like the real thing. Children age’s three to seven are the perfect age to enjoy these special toy tractors. One popular event at many county fairs is the kiddie tractor pull. These pulls are just like tractor pulls for adults but with pedal tractors they operate under kid power only.