This article was featured in Landscape Contractor.
Caterpillar®’s new mini hydraulic excavator range is starting to make an impact in the Australian market.
Servicing Sydney’s residential landscape sector with its diverse construction offering for the past 10 years, the vision of Greenstyle Landscapes and its owner Ryan Allen is clear: to create quality lasting outdoor spaces to suit the needs and desires of their clients.
As a multifaceted business believing in quality over quantity, the North West Sydney-based firm has earned a reputation for excellent customer service, communication, workmanship and a high-quality finish.
Before this year, Mr. Allen says the business had always rented machinery for its projects, but he felt the time was right to move into plant ownership, citing the long-term benefits of ownership outweighing short-term rental.
He began conducting his own research into finding the right mini excavator for the business and approached WesTrac Cat, looking specifically at the 301.7DCR as there were good deals on offer and he knew Cat was a strong brand worth looking into.
When WesTrac Cat mentioned the new “next generation” models Cat had released and the impressive advancements made on them for mini excavators, it piqued his interest.
Officially unveiled to the Australian market in January.
The new models include the standard tailswing 301.5, 301.6 and 301.8 mini excavators that give the best digging and lifting performance possible in a small machine package as well as compact radius 301.7CR, and 302CR for working in tight spaces. All models marketed in Australia come with expanding undercarriage and range from 1630kg to 2200kg, depending on machine configuration.
What makes these new models so different from what’s been seen in Australia before is the investment the manufacturer has made in developing advancements into its smallest machine packages. Through repeated customer input and feedback sessions around the world, Cat has prioritised the customer and operator in the design philosophy of its latest machines, resulting in several industry-first features exclusive to this excavator size class, including its stick steer system, which allows the operator to switch into travel mode at the press of a button.
An air-conditioned cab, tilting canopy or cab and a Bluetooth key with keyless start also help take the machines into the realms of the title ‘next generation’ that emphasise operator comfort, safety and usability.
Opting for the new 301.7CR, Mr. Allen is the first in the country to own a machine in Cat’s new mini hydraulic excavator range.
Having used the machine now since January, Mr Allen loves what he has.
“For me, first-and-foremost, I love the blade float function, it’s so easy to use and a huge advantage in my application,” he explains. “Secondly, the power is great, the machine is at the same time fast and smooth, which is not always possible with mini excavators. I’ve used machines that are fast and jerky and I’ve used machines that are smooth but slow. Fast and smooth at the same time is impressive and great for my job requirements.”
Another aspect he’s excited about is the ability to change the hydraulic settings from the monitor.
Experiencing the power and productivity of the new mini excavators first hand, Mr. Allen knows well the benefits the new Cat range is bringing to business owners like himself and other contractors in the market. Based on his experiences, he is also highly recommending the machines to others.
“More than that, I’ve already helped with a few more sales for WesTrac Cat. I’ve met with a couple of other local businesses, one a landscaping business and another a plumbing business who came by to ask me about my 301.7 and about dealing with WesTrac Cat, who have been great for me,” he says.
“I’ve heard both then made a purchase after meeting with me and having a look at my machine. I’ve also heard both could not wipe the smiles off their faces after taking delivery, which makes three of us. Ultimately, I’d be happy to endorse these machines to anyone who asks.”