Machinery Pete: Trends In Combine Values

September 26, 2015 02:08 AM

In recent weeks, the signs of the time—soft grain prices and resulting profit pressure on producers—have continued to reveal themselves. In mid-August, for example, I learned:

  • an equipment seller was offering free freight on large late-model machinery purchases via their online auction.
  • an auction firm in Illinois took a call from a farmer who was thinking about attending an upcoming consignment sale. The auction firm offered him 2.9% financing on any purchases.
  • some sellers adjusted advertised prices on used equipment.

The used market continues to face supply challenges with several types of machinery. I’ve also been noticing an uptick in the number of machinery auctions recently—a 10.2% increase the first three weeks of July versus the same period in 2014. More farm retirement auctions are featuring quite the lineup of late-model equipment. 


The current environment coupled with harvest got me thinking about combine values—specifically five-year-old combines. See the table to the right for a list of five-year-old (2010 model) combines that have sold so far this year. The prices primarily range from $115,000 to $160,000.

What do you suppose five-year-old combines were worth five years ago, in 2010, when the farm economy was a bit better? I consulted the Machinery Pete auction price database and pulled six examples, which are listed below.

In 2010, pent-up buyer demand exploded for all types of new and used farm equipment. Auction prices soared higher across the board. The supply of used equipment was tight. Obviously, that’s not the case today.

This 2010 New Holland CR9060 combine with 1,200 hours sold for $80,000 at a July 1, 2015, farm auction in Iowa.

For example, the 2005 Case IH 2388 with 675 engine hours listed in the table at left sold for $152,500 at a Dec. 8, 2010, farm auction in northeast Missouri. I posted a YouTube video of the combine on the auction block, and you can almost “feel” the strong buyer demand as you watch the video. At the time, $152,500 was the second highest auction price I’d seen on a Case IH 2388. The record-holder was a 2006 Case IH 2388 with only 98 engine hours that sold for $155,000 at a Feb. 2, 2007, farm auction in north-central Kentucky.

Can you imagine combines selling at record prices today? There’s just not that level of heat on five-year-old combines. 

That said, auction prices for late-model used combines started to solidify in August and September compared with a year ago when prices plunged. For example, a 2010 John Deere 9770 STS with 1,258 engine hours sold for $140,000 at an Aug. 21, 2015, consignment auction in Ohio.


If you’re in the market for used equipment, check out the all-new Machinery Pete marketplace. To shop for used machines from across the country, visit

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