Hitachi Construction Machinery (Europe) NV (HCME) has launched the ZW180-5 wheel loader. The new model has been designed to meet the requirements of its European customers, who are seeking highly productive yet fuel-efficient machines, with a smaller impact on the environment and a lower total cost of ownership. Operator comfort and safety, and easy maintenance features, have also been considered in its design.
The 6.7-litre six-cylinder water-cooled turbo engine contributes to high productivity levels by enabling a powerful digging performance and impressive travel speeds, as well as excellent fuel consumption. The ZW180-5 is equipped with a maintenance-free Diesel Oxidation Catalyst (DOC), which reduces particulate matter from the engine exhaust without the need for a Diesel Particulate Filter (DPF). A chemical reaction occurs at normal system temperatures, allowing a reduction of particulate matter in the exhaust without compromising the wheel loader’s performance or reliability. Fuel consumption is reduced by up to 10 per cent compared to the previous model, thanks to the five-gear transmission and the new fully electronic controlled engine, which combines a high-pressure common rail system and the DOC.
Reduced fuel consumption means lower running costs for owners of the new ZW180-5, as well as a smaller environmental impact. Examples of the machine’s advanced technology also influence the wheel loader’s environmental performance. It has two simple work modes, suitable for particular tasks. In Standard mode, the engine speed is controlled, which allows for smooth and efficient acceleration during loading, regular operations and travelling on level terrain. The P mode is useful when greater traction force is required for heavy-duty excavation and travelling quickly uphill. When changing work modes, the ZW180-5 has a quick power switch, which boosts the power when required.
The ZW180-5 also has a new clutch cut-off system, which controls the timing of the clutch for smooth operation when loading, regardless of the terrain. When travelling at high speed on flat terrain, the clutch can be released early so the wheel loader slows down smoothly by applying the brake pedal. When travelling slowly uphill, the clutch is released by pressing the pedal firmly to allow for easy unloading.
Further ways to minimise fuel consumption are using: the ECO display, which shows the operator when the wheel loader is operating economically in ECO drive; and the optional auto-engine shutdown, which avoids fuel wastage while the wheel loader is long idling.
Operator comfort is evident from the spacious cab of the new ZW180-5. The heated air-suspension seat can slide further back, providing ample legroom. The tilting telescopic pop-up steering column has also been repositioned to create additional space.
To enhance safety on the job site, the ZW180-5 offers greater visibility from the operator’s seat thanks to a pillar-less windshield, optional rear-view camera and large sun visor. The counterweight is also now visible from both sides of the machine. The shift-up delay to third gear makes this wheel loader safer to operate in confined spaces, because it can perform excavating and unloading tasks more safely in first and second gears.
A variety of easy maintenance features have been incorporated into the design of the ZW180-5 to ensure maximum availability and low total cost of ownership. For example, the redesigned engine and radiator cover can be opened fully, providing quick and convenient access for daily inspection. The greasing points, oil levels and fuel filters can all be accessed at ground level.
For operation in dust-filled environments, the ZW180-5 can be equipped with an optional wide-pitch fin radiator to prevent clogging. Another useful feature for quick routine maintenance is the automatic reversible cooling fan, which allows for easy cleaning of the radiator with its one-minute automatic reverse rotation every 30 operating minutes.
HCME’s Wheel Loader Product Specialist Vasilis Drougkas says: “The ZW180-5 belongs to one of the most popular classes of wheel loaders in Europe, so this highlights its importance to the Hitachi product line-up. We believe this durable new model will be ideal for material handling, agriculture and waste management applications among others. Its fuel-efficient and low-maintenance qualities will also make it particularly appealing for rental companies.”