Are you looking for the best self-propelled petrol lawn mower? Read my reviews, my opinions and a complete guide to choosing.

If you need to mow the lawn and you have a lawn larger than 700 square meters, then a self-propelled or self-propelled petrol lawn mower is exactly for you. This machine, in fact, is especially suitable for rather large expanses of land, that is those that a municipality electric lawn mower would not be able to cover. Plus, the self-propelled technology allows you to drive the device without (almost) a single drop of sweat. If you are interested in learning more about this topic, I suggest you continue reading.

What is self-propelled traction and how does it work?

Look, it’s very simple to explain and understand. Unlike common lawnmowers, self-propelled appliances have the rear wheels connected to the engine. Basically, the motor powers them and drives them forward, allowing you to make no effort when you push it. The self-propelled lawnmower moves forward almost by itself, considering that you just need to give it a little nudge to make it proceed. What are the advantages of this technology?

In addition to the effort saved, these models are perfect – as I anticipated – for large lawns and therefore over 700 square meters. Secondly, the automatic advance becomes particularly valuable when you have to deal with terrain that has various gradients. Furthermore, they are quite handy and light, take up little space and do not suffer from the problem of autonomy, which we find instead in battery-powered lawnmower.

Also consider that you will not have wires between your feet, that you will not have to worry about the possible presence of an electrical outlet nearby, and that the performances are really very powerful. Then know that it does not cost a high amount, if we evaluate the performance it is able to offer, and that it has a record robustness, which will allow you to count on it for many years.

Before going ahead, know that the self-propelled petrol lawnmower is a perfect meeting point between the common lawnmower (i.e. the push one) and the ride on mower, drivable.

Best self-propelled petrol lawn mowers

1. Murray EQ500 Self Propelled Self Propelled Lawnmower

I decided to start with a mid-range self-propelled petrol lawn mower, in my opinion not expensive, considering that such models can even exceed 400 euros. It integrates self-propulsion technology, so it is possible to move the rear wheels by pulling a special lever. It is a perfect model for land with a surface area of ​​around 1,200 square meters, due to the presence of a blade with a diameter of 46 cm.

  • Engine displacement: 140 cc
  • Cutting width: 46 cm
  • Sack capacity: 60 liters
  • Cutting height: 6 levels (2.8 to 9.2cm)
  • Extra features: mulching and side discharge

And the engine? Great, considering the price. It is in fact a very performing Briggs & Stratton 500E with a 140 cc displacement, and there are several options. As this is a 4-in-1 lawnmower, in fact, you can use it with the rear discharge in the collection bag (with a capacity of 60 liters), or with side discharge, by activating or not the mulching function. In summary, it is also ideal for anyone looking for a mulching machine.

What are the other technical data to underline? The engine is a 4-stroke, so it must be used with a special piston lubrication oil, which you will have to buy separately because it is not included in the package. As for the cutting heights, 6 levels are available, from a minimum of 2.8 cm up to a maximum of 9.2 cm. In addition, it is quite sturdy thanks to the steel and has a handlebar with an ergonomic grip and adjustable to 3 different heights.

1.BIS – Murray Version 750EX Series (161cc, 53cm)

  • Engine displacement: 161 cc
  • Cutting width: 53 cm
  • Sack capacity: 70 liters
  • Cutting height: 6 levels (2.8 to 9.2cm)
  • Extra features: mulching and side discharge

We do an encore and stay at Murray, with the 750EX Series version of the model seen above. It is a self-propelled lawnmower with a very powerful 161 cc engine, and with a cutting diameter of 53 centimeters. The bag is larger (70 liters), so it is a perfect model for lawns of about 2,000 square meters. Finally, it retains all the qualities of the less powerful machine.

2. Sprint 530SPX Self Propelled Lawnmower 750EX Series DOV

The Sprint 530SPX is a real monster, it has a high cost but it is not accidental, considering that it is recommended for very large plots of land. In fact, it has a Briggs & Stratton engine with a 160 cc displacement, so it can easily support the self-propelled lawnmower up to a surface area of ​​2,000 square meters. In addition, it has a particularly large bag, with a capacity of 70 liters, and this is also a factor that weighs on the distance to be covered.

  • Engine displacement: 160 cc
  • Cutting width: 53 cm
  • Sack capacity: 70 liters
  • Cutting height: 6 levels (2.8 to 9.2cm)
  • Extra features: mulching and side discharge

This Sprint model, then, has a steel blade with a cutting diameter of 53 centimeters, and is yet another proof of its goodness on really large grounds. Secondly, this self-propelled petrol lawn mower is also a 4 in 1, so you can also use it with the side discharge with (or without) mulching function. Finally, the engine is very powerful but it is also easy to start.

There are 6 adjustable cutting heights in total, starting from a minimum of 2.8 cm up to a maximum of 9.2 cm. In addition, it has very large wheels and this facilitates the forward thrust, guaranteed by the self-propelled technology. What are the other news to know? It does not include oil in the box, but it has a really sturdy, premium quality steel body. It is true that it costs, but it is worth it.

2.BIS – Sprint 500E Series (140 cc, 46 cm)

  • Engine displacement: 140 cc
  • Cutting width: 46 cm
  • Sack capacity: 60 liters
  • Cutting height: 6 levels (2.8 to 9.2cm)
  • Extra features: mulching and side discharge

If you like the characteristics of the Sprint, but you don’t have a large terrain, then you could “settle” for its younger brother, the 500E Series. It has a less powerful 140cc engine and a blade cutting width of 46 centimeters. Additionally, it has a smaller bag (60 liters), but retains the option for mulching and also the self-propelled drive technology.

3. AL-KO Self Propelled Lawnmower 160cc OHV 51 cm

The AL-KO is another self-propelled and therefore self-propelled model, with a powerful 160 cc engine and a rather large 51 cm cutting diameter. It has a bag with a lower capacity than the average for this type of blade, equal to 60 liters. It means that you will probably have to empty it more frequently than another model with a larger container.

  • Engine displacement: 160 cc
  • Cutting width: 51 cm
  • Sack capacity: 60 liters
  • Cutting height: 7 levels (3 to 7 cm)
  • Extra features: mulching and side discharge

Not bad, because the performances are brilliant and for value for money it is in all probability one of the best, since it is not expensive at all. Secondly, this AL-KO lawnmower has a nice self-propelled rear-wheel drive, which allows you to save energy, and given the power of the engine it can even hold up to 1,800 square meters.

However, consider that it has some “edges”, due to the lower than average price. Firstly, it is quite noisy, but this is a speech that applies to almost all internal combustion engines, and secondly it is not very easy to start from cold. Removed these small defects, it is a jewel that offers 7 cutting levels from a minimum of 3 centimeters up to a maximum of 7 centimeters.

4. Alpina Castor Self-propelled lawnmower FL 53 SQH

Another lap, another run, another professional quality self-propelled petrol lawn mower. This model mounts, among other things, a high-performance Honda FL 53 SQH engine, with a displacement of 160 cc and a cutting width of 53 cm in total. It means as always it is suitable for rather large lawns, also due to the presence of a bag with a capacity of 70 liters.

  • Engine displacement: 160 cc
  • Cutting width: 53 cm
  • Sack capacity: 70 liters
  • Cutting height: 5 levels (2.5 to 8.5cm)
  • Extra features: mulching and side discharge

In addition, it has an adjustable cutting height in 5 different positions, starting from a minimum of 2.5 centimeters up to a maximum of 8.5 centimeters. Of course, being a top of the range, there is no shortage of 4 functions in 1: rear discharge with or without bag, and side discharge with or without mulching function. In addition, it has a very comfortable handle to hold with an adjustable height.

The wheels are very wide and the performance is really high, in all its functions, but it is quite noisy (96 dB) and therefore requires you to wear the appropriate protective headphones. Also know that, despite a weight of almost 39 kilos and its dimensions, this self-propelled lawnmower is very agile and easy to drive, also thanks to the self-propelled technology. Finally, the oil must be bought separately and the shredding function is excellent.

How to choose a self-propelled petrol lawn mower

1. Engine power

Any internal combustion engine has a power always calculated in Kilowatts (kW) or in Horsepower (HP), while the displacement in Cubic Centimeters (CC). The correct choice always depends on the size of the lawn you need to mow, since a greater width also corresponds to a greater power of the engine. Here are some concrete examples.

  • Lawns up to 900 square meters: you can settle for a basic machine, with a 2.4 HP, 1.8 kW or 100 CC engine.
  • Lawns from 900 to 1,500 square meters: in this case you will want to get a lawnmower with a 3 HP, 2.2 kW or 150 CC engine.
  • Lawns from 1,500 to 2,000 square meters: To cover this range, you will need a professional self-propelled petrol lawn mower, with 3.5 HP, 2.6 kW or 160 CC.

As you can see, there is certainly no shortage of options to cover any need, both in terms of engine power and land area. Before going on, I would like to spend a few lines to explain the speech relating to the displacement: the larger it is, the more the engine will be able to run for a long time at maximum speed, thus maintaining top performance in the long term.

2. Cutting width

The cutting width indicates the diameter of the blade disc that rotates under the body of your mower, and is a fundamental value, especially when you have to cut very large lawns. If you choose a blade with a large diameter, in fact, you will mow larger quantities of the surface with a single pass, consequently you will shorten the work time. As a rule, a self-propelled petrol lawnmower has a blade diameter starting from a minimum of 40 cm and reaching a maximum of about 56 cm.

  • Lawns within 900 square meters: diameter from 40 to 46 cm.
  • Lawns from 1,000 to 2,500 square meters: diameter from 48 to 56 cm.

Of course, the higher this value, the more you will reduce the mowing time as the machine moves across the ground. Know that petrol models on the market are those with the highest cutting width ever, given that to find higher blade sizes we have to “trespass” in the field of garden tractors. In that case, in fact, the diameter of the blade disc can even exceed 100 centimeters.

3. Cutting height

Surely you already know that any machine of this type allows you to adjust and therefore customize the cutting height. This also applies to the simpler models without an engine, such as the i manual lawn mowers, consequently, petrol engines with self-propelled traction are no exception. The values ​​are not standard, as some mowers allow you to make several possible adjustments, usually from a minimum of 2 centimeters up to a maximum of 8 centimeters.

  • 2 centimeters: the perfect fit for English lawns.
  • 3.5 to 4.5 centimeters: normal lawns.
  • 5 to 6 centimeters: natural effect lawns.

It is also important to underline another detail that is anything but secondary: each model has a certain number of adjustments, and each level corresponds to a certain cutting height. To give you a concrete example, there are lawnmowers with 4 possible adjustments and others that exceed 10 adjustments. Furthermore, the minimum value of the lowest level could also change, which could start (again for example) from 1.6 centimeters instead of 2 or 3.

4. Capacity of the collection basket

Since self-propelled petrol lawn mowers are tools designed to cover large areas, it is logical that they have collection bags with a higher capacity than electric ones. In this case, in fact, we start from a minimum of about 50 liters, or just enough to cover a plot of over 1,000 square meters, without having to empty the bag too many times. The higher the square footage, however, the more you will want to opt for a model with a larger collection container, in the order of 60 liters if you exceed 1,200 square meters.

Before moving on, consider that some lawnmowers have a sack with a warning light that tells you when it is about to reach its maximum capacity. Other models, on the other hand, give you the possibility to check the capacity on sight, therefore without having to disassemble the bag, thanks to a transparent body. This applies to plastic containers, while for fabric bags it is easy to notice if they are getting too full, as the meshes allow you to see how far you have come.

5. Exhaust system

In most cases, the unloading of the cut grass takes place at the rear, with the mowing ending up inside the collection bag. In some models, however, there is also the option of the side discharge, in case you need to dry the grass on the lawn, so as to use it as a natural fertilizer. The collection in the bag, on the other hand, is useful to dispose of it later thanks to yours composter.

Special mention for the exhaust system with shredding option. A self-propelled petrol lawn mower with mulching cut it chops the grass finely thanks to two blades, and in this way allows you to leave the grass on the lawn, without having to collect it, to make an excellent fertilizer. As far as mulching is concerned, know that some lawnmowers give you the possibility to choose whether to use it or not, thanks to a special accessory to be assembled or disassembled if necessary.

6. Type of transmission

The types of transmission that you can meet in a self-propelled petrol lawn mower are essentially two: the mechanical one, and the hydrostatic one. The second is the best ever, as well as the most expensive, since it allows you to change the forward speed and adapt it to any circumstance, by operating a specific lever. This extra is really valuable, especially when you have to cover a lot of meters and you need to go very fast.

Not surprisingly, hydrostatic transmission is also known as “Auto-walk”. Also, it makes things easier when you have to run into a lot of slopes. The classic transmission, on the other hand, is mechanical: it costs less, but does not allow you any opportunity to adjust the speed, and is less rapid (about 1/3) than the hydrostatic one.

Other factors useful for the choice

1. Electric start

In the more advanced models there is a small motor that allows you to start the lawn mower electrically. It is usually activated by pressing a special button or by turning a specific key, and it is particularly suitable for those who fear not being able to have the necessary energy for the classic pull start of the rope.

2. Additional front wheels

Some devices give you the possibility to install a bar with 2 additional and multi-directional wheels on the front of the machine. This addition is great as it facilitates the progression and movement of the mower, making it even more manageable, for example when you have to do the slalom between trees and bushes.

3. Adjustable and foldable handlebar

If you are looking for a compact and easy-to-store self-propelled petrol lawn mower, then I recommend that you opt for a model with a reclining and folding handlebar. In addition, some appliances also allow you to adjust the height.


Related Post