In the eyes of the law, a publication is a publication. If it is acceptable for a magazine called Which Tractor (I don't know if it exists but I bet it does) to publish pictures of the tractors they have tested (including logos/trademarks) and to publish glowing reports for those which performed admirably and damning reports for those which performed poorly, then a simple book of John Deere tractors with no judgemental text will also be acceptable.
Originally Posted by zsas
A magazine is a for profit publication in the same way as a photo book is.
Magazines and newspapers publish illustrated reviews of all sorts of products from cars to sausages. They often compare similar products of many manufacturers and tell you which is the best and unfortunately for the manufacturer, which is worst. The manufacturer has no claim on the publisher as the opinions are just that, the opinions of a reviewer. Plus they are based on actual tests of actual products. None of this needs to be endorsed by the manufacturers as these are products available for purchase.
To get back to the topic in hand, let us consider this scenario (using your example):
I have produced a glossy full colour book of John Deere tractors. There is no judgemental text but there might be a list of features.
Assume someone at John Deere got a copy of the book - I might even send them a free copy. And assume that they didn't like the idea of me making the book and were thinking of taking legal action.
What are the grounds for this legal action? There is no defamation and no loss to the company.