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 Caterpillar® showcases world first electric drive large wheel loader 

Dealers and key clients from across Australia and New Zealand were treated to a special showcase event on Thursday (31 October 2019) when Caterpillar put its latest wheel loaders, articulated trucks and a range of other equipment to the test at Quarry Farm, south of Perth. 

The 2019 national Load and Haul Event was centred around Caterpillar’s new XE range including the Cat® 988K XE and 972M XE wheel loaders. 

The XE range is proving incredibly popular for a broad range of applications across construction, earthmoving and smaller mining operations, and is closely based on the popular predecessor models with additional features providing greater productivity, efficiency and even better all-round performance. 

988K XE Wheel Loader 

The new Cat 988K XE is the first large wheel loader offered by Caterpillar with a high-efficiency electric drive system, delivering 25% greater overall efficiency and up to 10% more productivity in load-and-carry applications than the industry leading 988K loader. 

Delivering high-production in all loading applications, the 988K XE is recommended for demanding job sites where fuel efficiency makes a difference in the machine’s total cost of operation. 

The new loader features switched reluctance (SR) technology and leverages more than 15 years of Cat electric drive experience as well as more than four years of stringent testing in a range of applications, delivering proven reliability in the field. 

The Cat C18 ACERT™ engine, mechanical dropbox, driveline and axles from the legacy of the 988K remain in this electric drive machine, providing a consistent, trouble-free operation. 

972M XE Wheel Loader 

Cat’s 972M XE wheel loader features a continuous variable transmission that results in smooth shifts, fast acceleration, and speed on grade, whilst also delivering exceptional fuel economy. 

While designed with the construction sector demands in mind, these characteristics will make the 972M XE a popular choice in quarry and mining operations with the need to deal with steeper grades, tighter loading areas, and greater pressure on cost per tonne. Caterpillar: Confidential Green 

Other Recent Additions 

A range of Cat’s other recent additions was also on display including the 986K Wheel Loader, 6015B Hydraulic Shovel, and the 745 and 740 GC Articulated Trucks. 

There was a special cameo appearance by the Piacentini Panther Low Loader, designed by Bunbury-based contractor Piacentini & Son, which has been developed to improve safety and efficiency when loading and transporting heavy equipment around mine sites. 

Jarvas Croome, CEO of WesTrac which hosted the event and is the Caterpillar dealer for WA and NSW, said industry would welcome the further refinement of this popular range of construction and earthmoving equipment. 

“We are delighted to be able to host such an important event on behalf of Caterpillar and welcome the interest and input of industry,” Jarvas said. 

“Activity is increasing across Australia with a large number of infrastructure and major construction projects underway, while there’s also a lot of movement in mining. 

“The highly versatile Cat XE range is going to be a popular choice for fast, efficient operations across all sectors, not to mention providing improved environmental performance for operators.” 

“Photos courtesy of Andre Chang-Fane/WesTrac”

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