John Deere AutoTrac™ Universal



Precision Ag


  • AutoTrac reduces overlap
  • Allows for faster working speeds
  • Curve Track automatically drives curved passes

Machine Features

Use many tracking options for any field

AutoTrac™ steering system allows operators to use tramline management more effectively, minimizing soil compaction. Additionally, AutoTrac allows the machine operator to select from a variety of guidance modes including straight track, AB curves, adaptive curves, circle track, and swap track. These tracking options allow the operator to select the track best suited for the field and conditions reducing the number of passes needed to cover the field.
Curve track
Curve trackCurve track

The curve track mode helps operators by automatically steering curved guidance lines on terrain that does not allow for straight track to be used (rolling hills or contours).
When running with curve track, keep in mind these basic principles:

  • Straight track is more accurate than curve track.
  • A machine with an integrated AutoTrac steering kit is more accurate than a machine with the AutoTrac Universal (ATU) steering kit.
  • Slower speeds are more accurate than faster speeds.
  • Gentle curves are more accurate than tight turn radius curves.
The curve adapts, if driven around an obstacleThe curve adapts, if driven around an obstacle
The curvature of the line changes down the fieldThe curvature of the line changes down the field

A/B curve track 


This track allows the operator to set a curved line in a field with two end points (A and B) and will generate guidance lines parallel to the initial track in either direction.

Skip passSkip pass
The line stays the same across the field, and an operator can use skip track.
Field obstaclesField obstacles
Even if an operator drives around an obstacle in the field, the next pass follows the original track line.
Straight track
Subsequent passes are identical to the first passSubsequent passes are identical to the first pass

The straight track mode helps operators by automatically driving straight. Operators can create an initial straight line using a variety of different setup options.


Once the track has been defined, all subsequent track lines in the field are created parallel to each other at the defined track spacing distance.

Follow track mode reduces compaction
Active Implement Guidance™ uses the follow track modeActive Implement Guidance™ uses the follow track mode

Unique to John Deere Active Implement Guidance, the follow track mode assists the driver when operating headlands or navigating around obstacles, allowing the implement to follow the tractor guidance path. This helps reduce crop damage and soil compaction.

Types of curves
Simple curve







Two different modes can be used depending on the type of curves that need to be created: adaptive curves or A/B curves.


Adaptive curve track


This track allows the operator to record a manually driven curved guidance line. Operators using a GreenStar™ 3 (GS3) 2630 Display have the ability to record and utilize multiple adaptive curves per field. This feature is especially useful as operators maneuver around terraces or irregular, constantly changing fields. Adaptive curve mode also has the ability to connect line segments when documentation is selected as the recording source. Self-propelled forage harvester or combine operators may find this functionality useful if they need to quickly raise their header for any reason.

Manual circles with Parallel Tracking™t guidance systemt
Circle track mode on the displayCircle track mode on the display

The circle track mode helps operators drive concentric circles in a field when a circle is set up and guidance is being used. Operators can create an initial circle using a variety of different methods. Once the initial circle has been defined, all the subsequent circles in the field are created.


Circle track is available in Parallel Tracking mode. Pivot Pro activation must be purchased to use circle track with automatic guidance.

Concentric circles with Pivot Pro
Pivot Pro tracking modePivot Pro tracking mode

The Pivot Pro module allows the operator to automatically guide a machine in defined concentric circles in fields with center-pivot irrigation systems.


Circle track functionality is included with GreenStar Basics, allowing the operator to manually guide the machine around the concentric circle without an upgrade activation. Pair Pivot Pro activation with GreenStar AutoTrac to have the machine drive circles automatically.


Pivot Pro is approved for level fields, as accuracy can be degraded as slope increases. If there is slope in the field, there is the potential the circle track space and the center-pivot tower track will not match up. Keep in mind, AutoTrac draws the circle spacing as if the plane were level.

Tramline management
Tramline screenTramline screen

Tramline management provides the opportunity to setup and edit certain guidance lines as tramlines. Those lines will be highlighted in a separate color in the guidance screen. Tramline management is available on the GS3 2630 Display in straight track, AB curve, and circle track modes.

Tramlines can be set and stored for each A-B line in the display. This allows the operator to properly seed and plant fields with accurate tramlines defined. This will make it easier to reduce inputs on all following field operations such as spraying.

NOTE: Tramline management is not currently available on the GS3 CommandCenter™ controls.

Swap track
Swap track provides operators the ability to quickly switch guidance modes as they work through fields varying geographic conditions. Operators can easily move from straight track to any of the other tracking modes as needed. Swap track allows the operator to toggle between up to four different guidance lines within the same field on the GS3 2630 Display. Operators can also change the track order while AutoTrac is engaged.
Swap track is available on the GS3 2630 Display.
NOTE: Swap track is not available on the GS3 CommandCenter.

Reduce soil compaction and passes

Reduce compaction with AutoTracReduce compaction with AutoTrac

As tractors and field equipment become larger and heavier, there is a growing concern about soil compaction. Heavy equipment and tillage implements can cause damage to the soil structure. Soil structure is important because it determines the ability of a soil to hold and conduct water, nutrients, and air necessary for plant root activity.


By using AutoTrac™ steering system, operators can optimize the number of passes and reduce compaction. Additionally, the operator can confine traffic between certain rows and avoid compacting the row area.


AutoTrac allows producers to use the same traffic lanes year after year, sacrificing a small portion of the field in favor of having no wheel traffic in the majority of the field. Restricting traffic to specific lanes also provides a firm soil surface for more efficient tractor operation.


Without using AutoTrac during field operations, there is tendency for passes to overlap. Each pass over a field under poor conditions can cause significant damage to the soil.

Reduce operator fatigue and time spent in each field

AutoTrac™ assisted steering system greatly increases operator productivity by maintaining consistent accuracy and efficiency. Operators remain more alert while they are in the field and are able to focus on implement settings and varying field conditions. AutoTrac also allows operators to confidently create evenly spaced rows past sunset, as well as in rain, dust, or fog.

AutoTrac increases productivityAutoTrac increases productivity

AutoTrac allows the operator to maintain the optimal working speed for a specific application. This helps maintain peak machine and implement performance, resulting in a uniform field. Consistent speed also allows for more acres to be covered in a day for those applications that require higher speeds, like spraying.


AutoTrac also improves operator comfort as the operator has time to concentrate on implement tasks.

Customize accuracy and repeatability to meet the needs of an operation

The StarFire™ 6000 Receiver offers multiple differential correction signal levels to match receiver performance with the needs of the operation.

StarFire 6000 horizontal pass-to-pass accuracy:
  • SF1: +/- 15 cm (5.9 in.)
  • SF3: +/- 3 cm (1.2 in.)
  • Radio RTK: +/- 2.5 cm (1.0 in.)
  • Mobile RTK: +/- 2.5 cm (1.0 in.)
StarFire 6000 pass-to-pass accuracyStarFire 6000 pass-to-pass accuracy

NOTE: Horizontal pass-to-pass accuracy specifications are 1D and are based upon a 15-minute time period, 95 percent confidence interval, clear view of the sky, no signal interference, no scintillation, and ideal atmospheric conditions (free from solar disturbances and other ionospheric/tropospheric activity). Performance may vary based on Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) constellation health.


NOTE: Radio RTK horizontal accuracy specification is based on the maximum supported baseline (distance from the RTK base station) of 20 km (12 miles) and a properly-installed RTK base station.


NOTE: Mobile RTK horizontal accuracy specification is based on a 20-km (12-mile) baseline (distance from the nearest network RTK base station). Performance will vary based on network geometry.

What does pass-to-pass accuracy really mean for the user?

Pass-to-pass accuracy defines how accurate the receiver is at calculating its position over a relatively short (15-minute) time window. For each point in time during that 15-minute window, a pass-to-pass error value is calculated based on the difference between the desired track spacing at the receiver and the actual track spacing based on the receiver’s calculated position. The error values for the entire 15-minute period are combined and the pass-to-pass accuracy value is defined as the 95 percent confidence interval of the data set, meaning 95 percent of the error values are less than or equal to the specification.


Pass-to-pass accuracy is measured at the receiver and does not take into account additional error sources such as AutoTrac™ control system error, ground conditions, or implement drift.

Pass-to-pass accuracyPass-to-pass accuracy

Pass-to-pass accuracy has a direct impact on guess-row spacing during jobs like planting, strip till, or fertilizer application, which can have a direct impact on yield potential. Guess-row spacing is also critical for operational efficiency and reducing crop damage in operations that mix implements of various widths.

Guess-row spacingGuess-row spacing

Pass-to-pass accuracy also has a direct impact on the amount of skip or overlap that occurs during operations like spraying, fertilizer spreading, or conventional tillage, which has a direct impact on yield potential and input costs.

What does repeatability really mean for the operator?

Repeatability defines how accurately the receiver can calculate its position over a relatively long time window. Repeatability is measured at the receiver and does not take into account additional error sources such as AutoTrac control system error, ground conditions, or implement drift.


In-season repeatability is critical when using AutoTrac for multiple jobs throughout the growing season. One example would be creating AutoTrac guidance lines during planting, then using those same guidance lines to complete subsequent jobs such as side-dressing fertilizer, post-emerge spraying, and harvesting.


Long-term repeatability is critical when mapping interior and exterior boundaries for later use as input to John Deere Section Control on planters, sprayers, and fertilizer applicators. Long-term repeatability is also critical for growers that use the same AutoTrac guidance lines over multiple seasons for operations like subsurface-drip irrigation, controlled traffic, or alternating planter spacing between the rows from a previous season.

StarFire 6000 repeatability:
  • SF1: no repeatability, position drifts over time
  • SF3: +/- 3 cm (1.2 in.) in-season repeatability (where applicable)
  • Radio RTK: +/- 2.5 cm (1.0 in.) long-term repeatability
  • Mobile RTK: +/- 2.5 cm (1.0 in.) long-term repeatability (where applicable)

NOTE: Repeatability specifications are based on a 95 percent confidence interval, clear view of the sky, no signal interference, no scintillation, and ideal atmospheric conditions (free from solar disturbances and other ionospheric/tropospheric activity). Performance may vary based on GNSS constellation health.


NOTE: Radio RTK repeatability specifications are based on a properly-installed RTK base station and a base station position that has not been modified after initial setup.


NOTE: Mobile RTK repeatability may be impacted by updates to network reference frames or adjustments for tectonic plate movement. Networks in some areas of California, Oregon, and Washington will be updated more frequently due to tectonic plate movement.


NOTE: SF3 repeatability specifications have been validated through at least a 9-month period. A guidance-line shift may or may not be required after a period longer than 9 months. SF3 repeatability claims are only valid after the receiver has completed a full pull in and is operating at 100 percent accuracy. SF3 repeatability may be impacted by large unpredictable geological events such as earthquakes.


NOTE: SF3 repeatability performance may vary in the locations marked No in the table below due to the unpredictable nature of local tectonic plate movement or lack of historical data to verify SF3 tectonic plate models. The StarFire 6000/SF3 system will still apply repeatability modeling and attempt to correct for tectonic plate drift in these areas unless the receiver is located very close to a tectonic plate border, but performance may vary by location:



SF3 In-season repeatability modeling verified?



Yes (see notes)

Western portion of British Columbia is not verified due to proximity to a tectonic plate boundary

United States

Yes (see notes)

Locations not verified include Alaska, California, Hawaii, Oregon, and Washington due to the random nature of tectonic plate movement in those areas

Operates with hundreds of equipment platforms using all levels of StarFire™ Receiver accuracy

Silver logo denotes the ATU 200Silver logo denotes the ATU 200

The AutoTrac™ Universal (ATU) 200 steering kit is a mobile guidance solution that brings additional productivity to farming operations throughout the growing season.


ATU 200 is approved on over 450 different equipment platforms and is compatible with all levels of StarFire accuracy.


The benefits of the ATU 200 over the original ATU include:

  • Improved on-track line performance
  • Faster line acquisition
  • Serviceability

Move AutoTrac™ Universal 200 steering kit between machines depending on the season

AutoTrac Universal 200 steering kitAutoTrac Universal 200 steering kit
Quick and easy setupQuick and easy setup

With the mobile AutoTrac Universal (ATU) 200 steering kit, producers can leverage their investment in AutoTrac across many approved machine platforms throughout the growing season.


This means producers can move their ATU 200 steering system from their planting tractor in the spring, to their sprayer in the summer, then into their combine, and finally to their tillage tractor in the fall.


Best of all, the ATU 200 moves from machine to machine in about an hour depending upon the platform. By moving this system, operators can experience the value of automatic guidance year-round.

GreenStar™ 3 2630 Display: Increase profitability and reduce overlap

AutoTrac reduces overlapAutoTrac reduces overlap
AutoTrac maintains speedAutoTrac maintains speed

Farming requires multiple passes. This requires a method of guidance with a high degree of repeatability in order to minimize overlap (extra cost of seed, fertilizer, chemical and machine hours) and skips (loss of production).


Maintaining repeatable accuracy is important in all operations, especially with cropping practices that require multiple passes through the field. AutoTrac creates more consistent row spacing, reducing the potential for crop damage with subsequent passes through the field.


University studies have shown that operators tend to overlap 5 to 13 percent over the course of an entire day, which could mean up to 60 cm (23 in.) of overlap with a 6 m (19 ft) tillage implement. This means that a producer with 300 ha (740 acres) actually works and pays for 330 ha (815 acres).


With reducing overlap by using AutoTrac more ground is covered in the same time and inputs like chemicals, fertilizer, fuel, labor and machine hours are reduced.

Reduced overlap with AutoTrac

Field 1

4.72 percent

Field 2

8.03 percent

Field 3

12.74 percent


8.50 percent

GPS accuracy versus manual accuracy

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The information on this page is correct at time of publish and as per John Deere Aus. We reserve the right to change content at any time without prior notice. For more information please contact us.

Last Updated :

October 11,2018 06:23:10 Central Daylight Time

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