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Compact excavators remain some of the most popular machines in the construction, industrial, and agricultural industries. Top compact excavator manufacturers include Hitachi, John Deere, Bobcat, Case, Kubota, and Komatsu. New compact excavator models meet Tier 4 certification requirements and accept a range of attachments. However, top models change and with the rising competition, each company tries its best to outshine the others. Here we discuss the top four compact excavators of 2017, including features and prices.
1. Bobcat E32i T4
The Bobcat E32i T4 is available in three configurations: standard, long arm, and extendable arm. It has a maximum rev of 2200 RPM. What’s more, the turbocharged engine generates up to 24.8 horsepower, which is considerable for a machine this size. It is durable and offers many configuration options and add-on features that earn it the number one place on our list.
2. Caterpillar 301.5 Mini Hydraulic
This mini excavator is small enough to work on a landscaped surface and can deliver 17.4 horsepower with revs up to 2300 RPM. It works at two speeds, 1.4 mph and 2.7 mph. It also comes with selectable traction options and has an independent two-speed motor for greater flexibility. It also comes with an avalanche of features.
3. Hitachi ZX10U-2
This mini excavator comes equipped with a Yanmar engine complete with an adjustable undercarriage. The engine is water-cooled and exerts 12.7 horsepower with a top rev of 2100 RPM. The tractor type undercarriage has rubber shoes, making it great for pavement and landscape jobs.
4. John Deere 50G Compact
This excavator is slightly heavier than the usual mini excavator is, but that weight pays off in the unit's 36 horsepower capability and 2400 RPM. It is efficient thanks to gas recirculation technology and an auto shutdown feature. This excavator is best for heavy-duty work.
Pros of Compact Excavators
Compact excavators' small design allows them to go through tight areas. This is, in fact, one of the main reasons that many builders and contractors prefer compact excavators to full-sized excavators. Homeowners can also use compact excavators to dig inside their yards because these machines can easily fit into their yard gates due to their variable undercarriage. Compact excavators are less noisy than their larger counterparts, especially when crossing over cement and hard surfaces. In addition, a compact excavator that meets the Tier 4 certification requirements is generally less noisy than one that only meets Tier 3 or Tier 2. Finally, compact does not mean less power. The power output of these machines starts at 10 horsepower and tops 30.
Points to Consider before Purchasing a Compact Excavator
- Model: Even within the same manufacturer, models vary widely in terms of size, capabilities, and features. Look carefully at your needs and compare the model's capabilities to what your project requires.
- Specifications: Specifications also vary widely, from machine dimensions and weight to its power, dump height, and dig depth. Again, compare specs to your needs.
- Financing: With prices ranging from $20,000 to $120,000, most people do not buy compact excavators outright. If your resources don't permit outright purchase, look carefully at lease and finance options to determine your best solution.
Sample Prices of Compact Excavators
Prices depend on the type of excavator you want and vary widely based on a variety of factors, including:
- Engine power
Even with so many variables, the following rough estimates help guide your budget.
- Komatsu PC220 ranges between $50,000 and $60,000.
- Komatsu PC200 LC-5 ranges between $80,000 and $100,000.
- Hitachi EX150 costs between $90,000 and $120,000.
- Hitachi EX225 costs between $130,000 and $150,000, thanks to advanced features.
- Kubota K008-3 ranges between $20,000 and $40,000
- Kubota KX040 pricing starts at $50,000.
- A used Bobcat E32i 4T with 500 hours ranges between $30,000 and $50,000.
- A used Caterpillar 301.5 mini hydraulic with up to 2000 hours ranges between $15,000 and $25,000.
- A used John Deere 50G Compact with 1200 hours ranges between $8,000 and $16,000.