Bobcat, which has given the world iconic skid steer compact loaders, is on track with the first compact crawler loader with a purely electric drive.
The American company Bobcat, whose compact loaders are an absolute legend, probably doesn’t need much introduction. It is worth mentioning that the first compact loader Bobcat M-200 started production in 1958 and since then it has been part of the Korean company Doosan Infracore, which, thanks to this acquisition, is one of the largest manufacturers of construction equipment in the world.
The Bobcat products themselves then strive to adhere to proven recipes of compact dimensions, versatility and excellent permeability in any terrain. However, the company is constantly modernizing them, expanding their technical equipment and enabling customers to use the machines in the maximum range of conditions.
The latest and one of the most important innovations, Bobcat, now Doosan Bobcat, presented at the ongoing CES consumer electronics trade fair in Las Vegas, where it reportedly brought the world’s first compact track loader with a purely electric drive, called the Bobcat T7X.
One of the most common benefits of the Bobcat T7X is the quiet and emission-free operation, which will be appreciated not only by people in the city center, but also, for example, by companies operating in confined spaces with inefficient ventilation or air conditioning. However, in addition to the lower environmental impact, the T7X has several interesting advantages.
Let’s start with the propulsion system, which is based on a 62 kWh battery, which according to the company’s presentation should last either 4 hours of continuous work or all day intermittent work, which should be more common use with this type of loader. In places where the machines work in shift operation without the possibility of breaks for possible charging, but existing conventional combustion models are likely to remain popular.
The T7X electrically drives all systems, so it does without any hydraulics that were essential in the past. The absence of hydraulics means faster starts, because there is no need to wait for the system to pressurize, easier maintenance and at the same time lower costs, because there is no need to change the hydraulic fluid and take care of the system.
Electric motors should provide more power and at the same time higher torque from lower speeds than any Bobcat diesel has offered in the past. All he will need for his operation will be less than a liter of environmentally friendly coolant in the cooling system.
In addition, the machine is equipped with smart electronics management that monitors machine load / load weight and adjusts machine performance accordingly to save battery power. Perhaps the only disadvantage of switching to a purely electrical solution, apart from the classic limitations associated with batteries, will perhaps only be the incompatibility of the T7X with previous accessories that allow for hydraulic control.
However, Doosan Bobcat has introduced a new range of purely electrical accessories with the new machine, which includes an earth drill, broom or grab. In addition, the range of accessories should be expanded to cover the requirements and needs of the widest possible group of clients.
Sunbelt Rentals, which operates more than 1,000 branches in the North American market and is said to be committed to making a significant investment in building a relatively large fleet, should be the first to be interested in the T7X. But we will have to wait for more information.