We already looked at the other mini farmer-friendly best seller in our Peg Perego John Deere Kids Electric Tractor and Trailer Review.
This one, the John Deere 550 Gator XUV is a whole different ball-game. A farm-fun utility vehicle for small kids who love to be outside.
This electric vehicle is the second best-selling Peg Perego John Deere farm vehicle in the range, so it's clearly very popular.
This special kids electric farming vehicle has several highlights
It's got 2 speeds with reverse, a dumpbed that raises up and down by operating a handle between the seats, a cup holder, a passenger grab-handle, automatic brakes.
5mph speed limiter for novices and a 2 year manufacturers warranty. This is a 12 volt electric vehicle which does provide extra power when compared with the 6 volt kids electric cars.
This model (IGOD0063) has two heavy duty motors powering each of the rear wheels.
The double-motor drive system means that it can tackle the weight of 2 kids over an uneven surface like grass or off-road.
As the wheels are solid plastic, I would imagine that they would wear a bit if it's always driven on concrete.
However, spare parts are always available from Peg Perego and Tiger Imports in the USA.
Peg Perego say that this Gator 550 XUV is good for ages 3+ and I would say that the limit is about 6 years old, depending on the height of the child.
A small 8 year old could ride it but it would be a squeeze to get into the seat.
So let's take a closer look because many kids will have their eye on this already and you need to be sure that it's up to the job.
Cockpit and Seats
The Gator 550 XUV has two bright yellow seats at the front so your kids can ride together or with a friend and the dumper handle is in-between the seats.
I like this feature as it means that the passenger can also operate the dumper. Often with kids electric vehicles, all the controls are on the driver's side so the passenger can feel a bit left out of things.
Not so with the Peg Perego Gator. The passenger even has the cup holder on their side because we can't distract drivers with drinks, can we?!
Each seat has several adjustment positions to move them according to the size of the child.
This means they can have a comfortable ride even when very small. A 3 year old can sit comfortably and hold onto the grab handle on the passenger side and feel safe.
The Battery And Charging
Batteries are often a problem with kids electric vehicles as they can be over-charged and then fail.
Peg Perego seem to have overcome this problem by supplying a smart quick-charger that trickle charges the lead-acid battery over an 18-24 hour period.
This is pretty much the same as a regular car, so be aware that the battery is powerful and will spark when you connect the terminals!
The battery is housed in a compartment below the front grille and must be removed for charging.
You just need a screwdriver to remove the compartment cover, remove the battery retainer and then remove the battery. Full instructions are in the manual.
Peg Perego do recommend that you do not forget about the battery when charging it and to never charge it for more than 24 hours.
This will safeguard against any mishaps. Remember that the battery is like a regular 12 volt car battery and very powerful!
I have already mentioned the dumpbed handle in-between the seats, so on to the pedals.
There is one drive pedal which switches on the drive motors.
A neat feature is auto-braking
The motors will brake themselves when the child releases the accelerator pedal, so they don't need to learn to drive with 2 feet. The other control is the speed-shifter or gear-shifter.
It has 3 positions for full speed (4.5 mph) , slow 2.5 mph) and reverse. I like the reverse feature because the kid must keep their hand pressed on the shifter for reverse.
I think that this is a nice safety feature. It means that they cannot race around in reverse by accident and crash into things!
Once they let go of the reverse shift position the vehicle will stop. In the manual, Peg Perego recommend that you teach your kids to stop the vehicle before going into reverse.
I guess that switching immediately from forward to reverse will damage the motors, which sounds fair enough.
There are over 30 steps to assemble this Peg Perego 550 Gator SUV! it could possibly take you a whole day to assemble it, so be prepared for that.
It's a good idea to put the battery on charge before you start to assemble this as it needs an 18 hour charge the first time.
You should be done assembling in 18 hours and so your kids will be ready to go once you've finished.
I have read carefully through the reviews of this product and no-one seems to have any issues assembling it other than the time it takes.
Each step is simple and clearly explained with a picture in the manual. The trickiest part is getting the battery to fit right in its compartment.
Otherwise, it's all good but just takes a lot of time. There are a lot of parts!
You can see the full manual before you buy so you can download the Peg Perego John Deere Gator 550 XUV manual in PDF form.
- Battery charge can last up to 2 hours
- Spare parts readily available
- 2 year extended warranty
- Looks just like the real thing
- Good for 3-6 year olds
- Thermal cut-out
- Speed limiter to 2.5mph
- Best seller
- Can slip on hard surface inclines
- May need to add some kind of rubber tread to wheels
- Tailgate can get sticky and not open
- No seat belts
- A lot of assembly
I hope you have enjoyed this review of the Peg Perego John Deere Gator 550 XUV 12 Volt kids electric farm vehicle one of the best kids 12v electric vehicles.
Please go ahead and leave a comment below!