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The Ford 2000 Industrial with backhoe: a top choice

This model is rugged and reliable

IN THE SHOP with Rachel

By Rachel Gingell

When I’m in the market for a backhoe tractor, my top pick is the Ford 2000 Industrial tractor with a factory backhoe. I think it’s simply the best small backhoe available for the money.

The base tractor, the Ford 2000 Industrial, is rugged and reliable. The Model 2000 is based very heavily on the proven Ford 600. Besides cosmetic changes, the only notable improvement is the beefed-up axle – which is important when you’re adding a backhoe and a loader!

Two factors make the Ford 2000 a particularly excellent base tractor for a backhoe: the steering and the engine. The steering system is of particular concern because of the added weight (and wear) a loader and backhoe put onto the tractor. This system is where many backhoe tractors fail. The Ford 2000 shares a steering system with the extremely rugged Ford 600. Where other backhoe tractors fall short, this model excels.

Ford 2000 tractor

The second critical factor in the success of the Ford 2000 is the engine. Early models (manufactured between 1962 and 1964) used the excellent four-cylinder Ford 134 engine. This is the same engine that is in a 600 and in a Jubilee. I’m a huge fan of this engine for reliability, ease of repair and parts availability.

Ford switched to a three-cylinder engine in models manufactured in 1965 and later. The new three-cylinder engine is also very reliable and is simple to repair, but the parts availability isn’t as great as the earlier model. While parts can easily be ordered at your local tractor dealership, you won’t find them in big box stores or auto parts stores like you can with the earlier version of the tractor.

No matter what engine you get, though, you’re sure to be pleased with this tractor. While the regular Ford 2000 is a great tractor, the industrial version with the factory backhoe and loader is where this model really shines. Not only is the base tractor an excellent model, the backhoe and loader match the tractor’s reliability and ease of repair. Bottom line: if you need a small backhoe, look no further! The Ford 2000 Industrial is a great buy.