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Today’s modern machines are designed to dig every day, all day long, and every manufacturer strives to set themselves apart to make their machines at any size more comfortable for the operator. Intuitive and user-friendly designs enhance both operator comfort and performance and cab comfort is the key.
Compact equipment is growing in popularity in markets such as India, China and Latin America according to manufacturers, but low labour costs in these countries are preventing any rapid market development. Although not strictly considered a compact machine, the excavator is popular in most underdeveloped markets because it is versatile and cheaper than other compact equipment and is growing the fastest in India.
In the Asia Pacific, meanwhile, where labour is still cheap and heavy equipment is generally preferred, compact machines are becoming more popular. Mini excavators in particular are growing, albeit slowly, in this region. Developing areas are moving along – as more large-scale construction projects are completed the more it needs to do maintenance work and this is where the compact machines are needed.
Emissions standards in Europe, Japan and the US have shaped many aspects of the construction equipment industry over the last 15 years or more. This applies to the compact equipment sector, where the cost of onboard engine emission technology is a significant part of the overall machine price.
But at the lower engine power ratings found in compact equipment, regulation has been lighter than for bigger units. It is similar in Japan, where both power bands do not have to exceed the requirements of Tier 4a – the EU Stage V and US Tier 4 Interim equivalent. Things are more demanding in the US, where everything is now a Tier 4 Final level.
Compact excavators – engines of this size are not normally found in machines below about 10 tonnes in weight. However, it is more of an issue with the larger sizes of compact tracked, wheeled and skid-steer loaders and the introduction of Tier 4 Final in the US has driven several new machines that have been introduced in the last 12 months.
Compact wheeled excavators have been popular in Europe, however, they remain a rare commodity on many North American job sites. But in the right applications, these machines offer many advantages over other machine forms, especially in crowded urban environments.
The total number of wheeled excavators sold in North America over the last several years has been more or less static. Globally, the growth in the wheeled excavator category has been steady and significant. There are places where they are more popular than others. It should be no surprise that almost 100% of the wheeled excavators built in the world are built in Europe and South Korea.
The U.S excavator market is very competitive when it comes to performance and reliability demands. It is important to look at a job site as a whole and assess what size excavator you will need based on dig depth and lifting capacity.
The global compact excavator market is estimated at $XX Billion in 2020 and growing at XX% CAGR till 2025.
With its two newest machines, the U10-5 and the K008-5, Kubota offers power in small packages. Kubota has a broad portfolio of 13 compact excavator models ranging from 1- to 8-ton weight classes.
Both of the most recent machines are powered by a 10.3-horsepower Kubota engine. Excavators aren’t known for their speed, but the U10-5 and K008-5 both have a top speed of 2.5 miles per hour. Each allows for easy access to the engine for routine examination and maintenance.
Bobcat has revealed the E32e, its newest electric compact excavator. The 3.9-ton battery-powered excavator is the latest addition to Bobcat’s increasing electric machine roster. All three battery-powered Bobcat machines were on display in California for live demonstrations, demonstrating their viability as zero-emissions solutions for government and commercial fleets.
The lithium-ion battery pack in the E32e provides a 4 hour continuous run time. With a 240-volt outlet, it takes 8 hours to fully charge. The E32e has a 21.6 horsepower (or 16.1 kilowatt) motor. The electric mini excavator gives maximum torque regardless of rpm.
Case Construction Equipment has teased the release of the CX15 EV, an electric small excavator for the North American market. A 16-kilowatt-hour electric motor powers the CX15 EV, a 2,900-pound compact excavator. It has retractable tracks that reduce the machine’s width to 31 inches, allowing it to fit through doorways and work in tight locations.
It can work close to structures and barriers because of its minimum-swing design. Depending on the use, the CX15 EV’s battery can run the vehicle for an entire eight-hour day on a single charge.
Bobcat Company Introduces 6-ton R2-Series Compact Excavator In the latest release in the new R2-Series line-up of Bobcat compact excavators, which includes the conventional tail-swing, 4-ton E42 and minimal tail-swing.
Doosan Shows Prototype Electric Compact Excavator for the first time in North America during CONEXPO-CON/AGG 2020
Caterpillar has introduced three new NextGen excavators – designed to offer higher productivity and lower operating costs to the 15- and 17-ton class of machines. Models are available in Europe and North America.
The new Kubota KX057-5 and the U55-5 compact excavators offer various upgrades from their previous units. Technology features on the vehicle include a new full-color, seven-inch LCD screen. Optional keyless start and also the engine can be started with a four-digit code.
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