Hitachi boosts power on new 1.6/1.8 t mini excavators

By Murray Pollok06 October 2009

The Zaxis 16-3 is one of two new mini-excavators from Hitachi.

The Zaxis 16-3 is one of two new mini-excavators from Hitachi.

Hitachi is strengthening its range of mini excavators with the European launch of 1.6 and 1.8 t models, the Zaxis ZX16-3 and ZX18-3.

With a more than 20% increase in engine power compared to their predecessors (the ZX16 and ZX18 models) the new excavators are available as cab or canopy models and are designed for light applications in confined spaces, such as utilities, gardening/landscaping and general purpose groundworks.

The launch of the two models follows the introduction of the first ‘dash 3' mini excavator, the ZX14-3, in late 2007. The ZX14-3 was a shortlisted product in the Rental Product of the Year category at the first European Rental Awards in June 2008.

Joep van den Maagdenberg, Hitachi's product sales manager for the compact line in Europe the Middle East and Africa, said; "Every Hitachi mini excavator has been designed with durability, ease of maintenance and operator comfort in mind. The ZX16-3 and ZX18-3 are no exception.

"These new Zaxis models have already been tested extensively on a wide range of job sites. We are therefore confident that the enhanced performance of these machines will be well received by new and existing Hitachi owners, as well as rental customers."

Both units are equipped with three-cylinder 10.7 kW engines, which Hitachi said gives a significant increase in performance over the 8.7 kW power plants used in the previous models.

"Their superior power-to-weight ratios allow rapid acceleration and smooth operation in comparison with the previous models", said the manufacturer. Digging force is also increased by 18% to around 16 kW.

Operating weights are 1600 kg and 1770 kg, respectively, which means that the ZX16-3 and ZX18-3 are light enough to be transported by a trailer driven under a standard EU driving license.

Hitachi said the units will have reduced running costs because of the use of highly durable components. "The machines' D-shaped frame provides additional reinforcement and helps to prevent damage caused by obstacles. The boom is reinforced with a strong, ribbed cylinder cover, which provides higher impact resistance. The counterweight also extends over both sides of the machine for further protection", said the company.

A new tread pattern has been applied to the rubber shoe for added durability. The short-pitch rubber crawler is also excellent in reducing vibration caused when traveling and its structure has been improved for stability.

With the engine cover open, parts such as the fuel and oil filters are easily accessible for quick servicing and inspection, therefore reducing operator downtime and maintenance costs. Both the ZX16-3 and ZX18-3 have 22 litre capacity fuel tanks, and an optional extra is a keypad theft deterrent system.

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