Versatile compact loaders

By KHL editorial staff07 September 2022

Working on different projects with a whole host of challenges means that the compact wheeled loader needs to be versatile as well as agile.

Compact wheeled loaders – those with less than 90 horsepower – are being used for more and more jobs, in part due to the range of attachments available. Alternative power sources, such as electric, also mean that they can operate indoors and in city centres that have noise and/or emissions restrictions in place.

Doosan's five new compact loaders Doosan's five new compact loaders (Photo: Doosan)

As electrification becomes more popular across the compact equipment sector, real improvements are being made in battery life and power capabilities.

For example, Volvo CE’s L20 Electric is expected to deliver up to six hours of active work per charge. The electric machine comes with a choice of battery pack (33kWh or 40kWh) and reduces maintenance by 30%.

The L20 Electric is said to be a proven concept based on the larger L25 Electric model. It features a 1.8-ton payload and a parallel-type linkage offering visibility over the attachment being used, outstanding lifting height, as well as 100% parallel movement.

As well as the more peaceful working conditions, operator controls are also said to be a significant enhancement due to a new automatic park brake with hill-hold functionality as well as a range of customisable work modes.

Innovation in compact loaders
Liebherr has ‘overhauled’ its compact wheeeld loaders. (Photo: Liebherr)

Also expanding and developing its portfolio is Liebherr; the company has overhauled its compact loaders and expanded its series with the L 504 model.

Innovations on this model include the redesigned cab, which is said to provide the operator with better visibility. The optimised visibility of the lift arms also ensures an unobstructed view of the working attachment and therefore maximum safety.

LIKUFIX, available on all three compact loaders, allows the machine operator to change between mechanical and hydraulic working tools from the cab. This is said to save time and reduces the risk of accidents as the operator does not have to leave the cab when changing the equipment.

Wheeled loader from Volvo CE. Volvo CE is investing significantly in electric machines. (Photo: Volvo CE)

Liebherr says that they have now optimised the parallel guidance for safe and precise operation when working with forks. To increase the versatility of their machines, Liebherr offers High Lift arms for the L 506 and L 508 models on request. This is an extended version of the lift arms with a greater reach, which enables the compact loaders to also load taller transport vehicles.

New wheeled loader range from Doosan

Doosan has also been working hard behind the scenes to launch new products in the compact wheeled loader sector.

Following the signing of an exclusive supply agreement with Netherlands-based Tobroco-Giant, Doosan has confirmed the details of a new five model range of 3.5 to 5 tonne compact wheel loaders now available from the company.

Doosan says their new range of compact wheeled loaders covers a wide range of applications, including construction, earthmoving, landscaping, materials handling, and general industry. Electronic driving control ensures high driving comfort and precision and increases the thrust on the machines. In addition, various travel modes are available says Doosan.

Machine operator safety

As it is with most compact machines, operator comfort and ease of use are imperative. Liebherr has developed features in the cab to include a safety roof as standard.

For higher comfort, a safety roof deluxe or a fully enclosed cab are available. The use of narrow styles and a skylight gives the operator all-around visibility.

Electronic controls, coupled with operator comfort, provide users with the technology they need to complete challenging tasks. Development in both areas is increasing as key manufacturers strive to meet the ever evolving needs of the modern operator.

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Andy Brown Editor, Editorial, UK - Wadhurst Tel: +44 (0) 1892 786224 E-mail:
Neil Gerrard Senior Editor, Editorial, UK - Wadhurst Tel: +44 (0) 7355 092 771 E-mail:
Catrin Jones Deputy Editor, Editorial, UK – Wadhurst Tel: +44 (0) 791 2298 133 E-mail:
Simon Kelly Sales Manager Tel: +44 (0) 1892 786 223 E-mail: