As Liebherr’s announced the launch of its R 928 G8 crawler excavator sporting features such as high drawbar pull and enhanced capacity for load-bearing and larger buckets, John Deere and Komatsu upped the ante with their own excavator variety. John Deere enhanced their range revolving around grade control solutions by launching their Smart-Grade system on the 210G LC and 350G LC excavators. With the factory-default 3D Smart Grade system implemented, these excavators are able to deliver enhanced productivity and accuracy which benefit contractors at all levels of any given project.
Whilst Liebherr’s heavy duty machines boast optimized weight which makes transportation easier and optimised load curve and rotary drive inertia which reduces fuel consumption significantly, JDs jumps to the battle ground with pure technological enhancements. The new, robust X-form undercarriages ensure greater stability. The automatic central lubrication ensures a longer service life of the parts and improves the productivity of the machines. The Smart Grade excavator system by JD basically automates the boom and bucket functions.
This ultimately allows the operators to achieve finish grades that are smooth and accurate. The system uses GNSS positioning technology which optimises horizontal and vertical positioning which in return assists in controlling the boom and bucket movements to higher precision target. Liebherr’s machine however does have a greater plus point as their Gen 8 delivers enhanced tear and breakout forces compared to other excavators in the market of previous generation excavators. Even torque for Liebherr’s superstructure has been increased significantly which means that these new generation crawler excavators are able to achieve much higher levels of performance.
Kubota’s entered the foray from a totally different angle with their U48-5 compact excavator that sports a tight tail swing reflected from the U Series. Kubota looked into features which included enhanced performance, better comfort for operators and tech options that allow operators to customise their machines for their respective shifts. The use of Kubota excavator hire machinery is by far the most popular within the rental industry.
The new U48 has an operating weight of 11,057 pounds and gross HP at 40.4. For its size, the U48 mini excavator stands out in regards to digging depth of 10 feet 8 inches, and a bucket breakout force of more than 9,000 pounds. KOBELCO’s ED160BR-7 Blade Runner excavator is a two in one concept (short radius excavator and a dozer) and spits out 105 HP and equipped with a 6-way patented large-capacity dozer blade that have foldable edges that makes the ED160BR-7 easier to transport. There are several performance enhancements that render the ED160BR-7 as an efficient and effective machine at project sites.
Boasting much more power, agility and speed than its predecessors, the upgraded unit that features a digging force of more than 24,000 pounds increases work volume quite significantly which translates to cost savings. Market reports indicate that the excavator market will grow at a steady and holistic rate over the next few years giving market leaders such as Caterpillar/Cat, Sumitomo Construction Machinery, Kubota, Volvo Construction Equipment, Komatsu, Kobelco Construction Machinery and Doosan (Bobcat) the much-needed push as they contend with the VOVID 19 Pandemic.