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October 26, 2021

Professional Tool Reviews for Pros


Best Lawn Mower Reviews 2021

Best Lawn Mower Reviews

If you’re researching lawn mowers, you know there’s there is a TON to choose from. While we’ve used a bunch, we haven’t walked behind or sat on every mower available. We’re bringing our picks for the best lawn mower models from our own experiences to the table. But keep in mind these are hotly debated, even in our own office, and not every yard or property is the same.


We know they aren’t the only good ones out there. So give the other folks reading this article a hand and tell us what the best lawn mower is and why in the comments below.

Best Commercial Zero Turn Lawn Mower

Hustler Super Z Hyperdrive Series

Commercial ZTs have to have it all: durability, cut quality, speed, and comfort are at the top of the list. Fail in any one of these and you’ll be back to the drawing board.

Best Commercial Lawn Mower |  Hustler Super Z

Hustler’s Super Z Hyperdrive series earns our top recommendation in a split decision with Scag’s Turf Tiger II and eXmark’s Lazer Z X series also earned high marks.


Powered by Vanguard big block EFI 36 – 38.5 HP commercial engines, Hustler Super Z Hyperdrive mowers cut great and have speeds up to 16 MPH. Hustler’s I3M seats are comfortable for those long summer days while the hydraulics and transmission systems help keep the mower’s operations smoother than most.

On the durability side, the Super Z’s 60 – 72-inch VX4 decks are fabricated from 7-gauge steel. Raised and lowered using foot control, they have a range of 1 – 5.5 inches.

Hustler backs the Super Z series with a 3-year, unlimited hours/5-year, 500 hours warranty with 3,000 hours for the drive system. Visit or call your local Hustler dealer for pricing.

Also Consider:

Best Residential Zero Turn Lawn Mower

Cub Cadet ZT3 60 Ultima Series ZT

Finding the best zero turn mower for residential use isn’t all that different from what commercial crews need. The big difference, of course, is that these mowers are used far fewer hours each week. You can find good entry-level models starting around $2500, but if you’re able to swing into the $4000 – $5000 bracket, you wind up with a much better experience.

Best Residential Zero Turn Lawn Mower | Cub Cadet ZT3 60 Ultima Series ZT

We had a pretty tough time narrowing down this highly competitive field. Options from Toro’s Time Cutter and Titan series are strong contenders along with Ariens’ Apex series. However, it’s the ZT3 60 from Cub Cadet’s Ultima series that ultimately came out on top as our best residential zero turn lawn mower.

Cub Cadet starts with a Kawasaki 730V power plant rated at 24HP. While you can expect excellent cutting, speed is the trade-off. With a max speed of 7.5 MPH, it’s well under top commercial models and there are residential options that can give you a bit more.

However, that’s offset with dual Hydro-Gear hydrostatic rear-wheel transmissions that help you accelerate quickly and smoothly. Meanwhile, the generous 60-inch 11-gauge steel deck has a foot pedal for lifting and lowering to cover a cutting height range of 1 – 4.5 inches.

While you’re cutting, independent spring suspensions on the front casters help absorb bumps, and Cub Cadet includes a pretty nice adjustable seat for a residential ZT.

The ZT 3 60 is backed by a 3-year, unlimited hours warranty with limited lifetime coverage on the frame and deck shell.

Price: $4999

Also Consider:

  • Toro Time Cutter 42-Inch 75740: Best budget zero turn lawn mower

Best Battery-Powered Zero Turn Lawn Mower

EGO Z6 42-Inch Zero Turn Lawn Mower

It appears this is the year battery power really hits its stride and there are three new models competing for the best battery-powered zero-turn lawn mower for homeowners. EGO and Greenworks both have 42-inch models and Ryobi is sporting a new 54-inch.

Best Battery-Powered Zero Turn Lawn Mower | EGO Z6

We’ll go into much more detail about all three of these mowers in another article. But for our purposes today, the EGO Z6 is our top pick. It uses the same 56V batteries that power other EGO lawn care tools and mows up to 2 acres with the 10.0Ah batteries that come in the kit. Add 2 more for a total of 6 and you can boost that runtime up to 3 acres.

Onboard charging is a big plus and it’s impressively fast-charging for the size batteries it has. In our experience so far, it’s a legitimate gas replacement.

Also Consider:

Best Lawn Tractor

Husqvarna TS 248XD Lawn Tractor

Lawn tractors still dominate the entry-level ride-on mower class with price points that are typically lower than zero-turns and a less intimidating design for homeowners. As we considered the landscape, two mowers got our attention as real contenders for the best lawn tractor: Cub Cadet’s XT1 Enduro series and Husqvarna’s TS 200 series.

Best Lawn Mower | Best Lawn Tractor | Husqvarna TS 248XD

Husqvarna gets the nod with their mid-level TS 200 series line and we like the TS 248XD right at the $3000 price point. Powered by a 23 HP Kawasaki V-twin FR series engine, its dual pedal controls and electric push-button blade engagement are simple to learn and easy to use. Plus, you’ll be working from one of the most comfortable seats in this class.

The 48-inch ClearCut deck is fabricated from a more durable 10-gauge steel that’s designed to provide a lot of suction and pull grass up better to make your cut nice and even. The Tuff Torq transmission is a hydrostatic design and has an automatic differential.

As you’re looking at the premium side of the lawn tractor market, be sure to take a look at Husqvarna.

Also Consider:

  • Cub Cadet XT1 Enduro Series: Excellent value starting well under $2000

Best Battery-Powered Lawn Tractor

Greenworks Pro 60V Lawn Tractor

ZTs get most of the attention and there aren’t as many players in the electric lawn tractor category. However, it’s a very familiar design and a lot less intimidating for many folks.

Best Battery-Powered Lawn Tractor | Greenworks Pro 60V Lawn Tractor

That’s why Greenworks took the guts from their Pro 60V ZT and wrapped it into a 42-inch lawn tractor package. It runs on up to six batteries—the same ones that work with their other 60V tools. They also made the effort to make it feel similar to gas in its acceleration and movement but without the noise and emissions.

Overall, it’s the best transition from gas to a battery-powered lawn tractor we’ve used.

Best Self-Propelled Lawn Mower

Honda HRC216HXA 21-inch Commercial Mower

Best Self-Propelled Lawn Mower | Honda HRC216 Series

Honda’s flagship commercial mower continues to be our top pick. Sure, there are much less expensive options, but it’s the cutting power and cut quality of its twin-blade system, Honda GXV160 engine, and bulletproof durability that keep us coming back.

For more affordable options on the residential side, check out Honda’s GCV170-powered HRN lineup. From push to variable speed self-propelled and features such as RotoStop and electric start, there are four choices to fit your needs.

Also Consider:

Best Electric Self-Propelled Lawn Mower

EGO 56V Select Cut 21-inch Self-Propelled Mower

EGO has consistently been at the top of our rankings in the battery mower sector. There’s more competition than there used to be, but EGO hasn’t been content to sit still and let others catch up.

Best Electric Self-Propelled Lawn Mower |  EGO Select Cut

Their top two self-propelled models are the Peak Power (the most powerful battery walk-behind we’ve tested) and the Select Cut. The Select Cut gets earns the win in our books thanks to its combination of power, included blade selection, and cut quality.

The big deal is that it’s a stacked blade system that, until this model, we’d only seen on gas models. EGO also packs it with blades optimized for mulching and general cutting—you get to decide which one you put on. Since both come in the box, you can try them both and decide which cut you like best.

Also Consider:

Best Push Lawn Mower

Toro 21-inch Honda Push Mower 21328

Ah, the push mower. It’s less expensive and there are few parts to worry about breaking down on you. With a good engine and wheel bearings, it might not be as easy as self-propelled, but it’s not all that bad.

Our top choices for the best push lawn mower had the same engine: Honda’s GCV160. It’s a reliable power plant that should last you many years with minimal maintenance and has more power than entry-level mowers.

Rising above the rest, Toro’s 21-inch Recycler push mower earned our top recommendation over Troy-Bilt’s TB 160. It comes ready to mulch and bag with a side discharge chute available separately if you’d like it.

While it doesn’t haven’t a ton of bells and whistles, it’s a solid all-around machine with an engine that’s primed for the long haul.

Also Consider:

  • Troy-Bilt 21-Inch Push Mower TB160

Best Electric Push Lawn Mower

Makita 18V X2 Push Lawn Mower XML07

Makita’s XLM07 is essentially the same as the XML08 that we enjoy using but without the self-propelled drive. Makita made huge improvements to this model compared to earlier versions to get it ready for commercial use.

It steel deck is ready to handle the high-hour use that commercial mowers get and the entire design is much more rigid. It needs two 18V batteries to run (it’s a 36V mower) and has room for four packs so you don’t have to go back to the trailer or garage as often.

Makita also dialed in a Quiet Mode for its brushless motor. When you’re trying to conserve runtime or keep the noise level down in lighter cutting conditions, it keeps the blade at a lower—and quieter—RPM.

Also Consider:

  • EGO 56V 21-Inch Push Lawn Mower LM2101: Outstanding value and excellent quality
  • Greenworks Pro 60V 21-Inch Push Lawn Mower 2531802: Excellent choice for smaller lawns

Best Robotic Lawn Mower

Husqvarna Automower 435X AWD

Husqvarna consistently stays on the cutting edge of robotic lawn mower technology and they moved the bar higher (again) with the Automower 435X AWD. This futuristic-looking machine is specifically designed to be able to handle hills up to 35°.

This Automower works great for yard up to roughly 0.9 acre and the battery keeps it mowing for an hour and 40 minutes. Charging takes just 30 minutes before it’s off and running again.

Like most robotic mowers, the cut height is limited. Ranging from 1.2 to 2.8 inches, it’s not the best option for all grass species.

Smartphone connectivity and GPS assist are built into the system. It’s not completely wire-free just yet, though Husqvarna is working on that.

The system starts at $5199 with professional installation.

Also Consider:

  • Worx Landroid: Solid budget option if you don’t mind self-installation

How We Make Our Best Lawn Mower Picks

Lawn mowers at the level we’re writing on make up a vast category, and we’re not going into all the fine details about all the classes we’re recommending—that would take a really long time to write (and might be terribly boring to read)!

However, there are several things common to all mowers that we look for.

Cutting Power

Some grass is easy to cut, others, not so much. The St. Augustine we have in central Florida grows particularly thick and we need enough power to cut through it while keeping the blade speed high enough to get the best cut quality the mower can offer.

Cut Quality

When we talk about cut quality, we’re looking a couple of things. First, we want to see how even the mower leaves the grass. The best lawn mowers make your yard look like a green field of carpet that rolls with the small hills.

Second, we check to see how small the blades chop grass for mulching and how much grass it leaves behind when we’re bagging. No matter which one you prefer, you want the lawn to look clean when you’re done.

Engine Reliability

Do you want you mower to last a season or multiple seasons? Some engines, such as Honda, are known for their multi-year reliability. On the residential side, Honda engines can last a decade!

Even though professionals repower or buy a completely new mower every 3 – 5 years, quality engines from Kawasaki, Vanguard, and others can keep those years of service trouble-free with regular maintenance.

Build Quality

The engine isn’t the only part of the mower you need to keep an eye on. Belt pulleys, height adjustments, wheels, and much more need to stand up to the kind of hours you’re going to put on the mower. That’s very different for someone who mows once a week and a professional crew that covers 20 lawns a day.

Lawn Size Suitability

You’re not going to use an 18-inch lawn mower to maintain a 3-acre property. At least, you shouldn’t be. But those mowers are great for smaller city lawns. We always take into account the best lawn size for each mower. Part of that is the deck, and part of it is how efficiently it uses a tank of gas or set of batteries.

Price and Value

What you get for your money is another consideration for many people. Finding the right balance or performance, quality, and price is high on our list and how well each mower does it plays into our selections.

Why You Can Trust Pro Tool Reviews

Ever check out a “review” site and you can’t tell if they actually tested the tools or if they’re just “recommending” the Amazon top sellers? That’s not us. We won’t recommend anything unless we’d actually use it ourselves and we don’t really care who the primary retailer is. It’s all about giving you a legitimate recommendation and our honest opinion of each product.

We’ve been in business since 2008 covering tools, writing reviews, and reporting on industry news in the construction, automotive, and lawn care industries. Our Pro reviewers work in the trades and have the skills and experience to know whether tools can perform well in the field.

Each year, we bring in and review more than 250 individual products. Our team will put our hands on hundreds of additional tools at media events and trade shows throughout the year.

We consult with innovators in the technology and design of tools to gain a broader grasp of where these products fit and how they work.

We work with more than two dozen professional contractors around the United States who review products for us on real job sites and consult with us on testing methods, categories, and weighting.

We’ll provide more than 500 pieces of new content this year absolutely free for our readers—including objective evaluations of individual tools and products.

The end result is information you can trust because of the editorial, scientific, and real-world professional experience we collectively utilize each and every time we pick up and test a tool.

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