Caterpillar announces four prototype electric machines

By Andy Brown22 September 2022

Cat’s 320 electric excavator

At an online press event Caterpillar announced that its construction industries division was working on four new electric equipment machines, two excavators and two wheeled loaders.

Several of these machines will be on display at Bauma Munich in prototype form, but it is not known when they would be available commercially.

The two excavators are the 301.9 Electric Mini Excavator powered by a Cat 48V, 32kWh battery with a run time of up to eight hours on a single charge and the Cat 320 Electric Excavator powered by a Cat 600V, 320kWh battery with a run time of eight hours.

The wheeled loaders are a compact Cat 906 with a 300V, 64kWh battery and a run time of up to six hours. The other wheeled loader is a Cat 950 GC with a Cat 600V, 256kWh battery with a run time of up to six hours on a single charge.

Caterpillar’s 906 electric wheeled loader

Each machine will include an onboard AC charger, said to be best for overnight charging and a DC fast charging option for customers to use during break times. Caterpillar said it expects the 301.9 mini excavator and 906 compact wheeled loader to be first machines commercially available.

During the live event Caterpillar said, “We have been working for a long time on electrification – components, systems, functions… we want to make sure there is no performance difference with the electric products.”

At the event Caterpillar also announced that the company is evaluating the use of hydrogen in certain construction equipment applications with relatively high run times.

Hydrogen-fuelled solutions may also be used to charge battery-electric construction equipment where an adequate grid is not available.

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