Bobcat ‘Next is Now’ Will Reinvent Compact Industry

Posted: 21 October 2020

In the company’s first 60 years, Bobcat created the Global Compact Equipment Industry and changed how the world works. That was then. With ‘Next is Now’ the company is reinventing everything. In fact, Next is Now ensures what’s next for the industry is happening right now at Bobcat.

Creating the tools of tomorrow. More powerful, more efficient products that offer the agility, versatility and toughness that have made Bobcat famous. Combined with very significant product diversification and expansion into new markets and complemented by more intelligent, more connected technologies and services that reshape how work gets done.

Gustavo Otero, President of Doosan Bobcat EMEA, said: “With Next is Now, Bobcat is empowering people to work more efficiently and to enable them to achieve more than ever before. We are advancing more powerful, more efficient and smarter equipment and technologies in an expansion that offers an enhanced and much wider choice of products to increase opportunities for our customers.”

Next is Now - Diversification and Expansion

Over the last sixty years, Bobcat has gone through many changes, but throughout the company has maintained its compact market leadership with outstanding quality, workmanship and ingenuity. Bobcat is using the same ingenuity to launch Next is Now at the company’s largest ever virtual launch event in Europe, the Middle East and Africa on 21st October 2020.

Whilst this is a new platform reflecting current circumstances, Bobcat is embracing digital technology to launch innovative products into both new and existing markets. The company is not just aiming to be the global leader in compact construction equipment; the goal is to lead the entire compact equipment industry. That means a wider product line, more frequent product updates and innovative designs and technologies that will force competitors to play catch-up.

Roy Haaker, Vice-President of Sales and Marketing for Doosan Bobcat EMEA, said: “Inspired by the Next is Now philosophy, Bobcat is launching an unprecedented number of new products and product categories. As well as the product categories below, which will enter the market with immediate effect or very shortly, Bobcat is presenting new technology, showing the industry where it will be heading now and in the future.”

  • New Range of Small Articulated Loaders
  • New Light Compaction Range
  • New Bobcat Innovations and Technologies

Bobcat Enters the Wheel Loader Market

To expand the company’s loader product portfolio and to strengthen the company’s position as the world leader in compact equipment, Bobcat is entering the Small Articulated Loaders (SALs) market.

The company is expanding its loader portfolio to provide customers with more choice of Bobcat products, with optimized characteristics for specific applications in construction, rental, agriculture, landscaping, road works, material handling and many other industries.

Bobcat is entering the SAL market with two models, the L23 and L28, designed and built by the company in Bismarck in North Dakota, USA. With the new Bobcat SALs, the traditional attributes of high performance in a compact size, agility and versatility are now complemented by a light touch on the ground and increased lift capacity for lower weight machines. All of this is provided in comfortable, easy-to-drive vehicles that are also easily transported by trailer.

Bobcat SALs achieve very minimal ground disturbance with their use of an articulated joint, which enables the rear tyres to match the front tyre path when turning. In addition, the turf-safe mode limits wheel slippage. This makes Bobcat SALs ideal for landscaping, light construction, agriculture and maintenance projects where space is tight and lower ground contact is needed.

John Chattaway, Loaders Product Manager at Bobcat, said: “The high lift capacity offered by Bobcat SALs compared to their machine weight is ideal for lift and carry operations in compact areas. The extendable boom on the L28 further simplifies the placement of loads which is also enhanced by the all-round visibility. Counterweight options allow our SALs to be customized to give users the capacity they need for a particular application.”

Bobcat will be providing more detailed specifications of the SAL range at the commercial launch date, which is planned for early 2021.

Bobcat Launches New Light Compaction Range

Compaction applications are a required part of numerous industries, and no construction site is complete without a soil and asphalt compactor. As a result, Bobcat is expanding its product portfolio further to offer a full range of light compaction machinery, developed in collaboration with the Ammann Group.

The new Bobcat Light Compaction Range covers seven different product families and 37 models in total, to meet work requirements on almost any construction job site. Bobcat light compaction machines offer maximum performance, while not compromising on comfort, safety and simplicity of use. The Bobcat Light Compaction Range includes:

  • Vibratory rammers
  • Vibratory forward plates
  • Reversible vibratory plates
  • Hydrostatic plates
  • Walk behind rollers
  • Trench rollers
  • Tandem rollers

New Bobcat Innovations and Technologies

The future is not just more powerful, it is digital and connected. Bobcat is pushing into this space to connect people and machines in new and innovative ways. These technologies are in a concept stage of development or already being prepared to enter the market. This will allow dealers to better serve customers and help operators work more efficiently, more safely and in ways they never dreamed possible. Bobcat is working on bridging the gap between the operator and machine by testing and adopting different technologies that people use every day with the goal of making the job site a smarter place.

Bobcat MaxControl Remote Operation is a new technology providing convenient, easily accessible remote-control operation using an app on a smartphone. With Bobcat MaxControl remote operation, two-person jobs become single-worker tasks. Operators can tackle simple, everyday tasks such as opening and closing gates or loading bales in shorter time and with a smaller crew. It is compatible with compact loaders with Selectable Joystick Controls (iOS only) dating as far as back as 2004.

Bobcat is looking to make MaxControl a simple modular solution, with one hardware box for the groundwork, laying the foundation for other features. Remote operation is the first feature within Bobcat MaxControl and the company is looking to add more features in the future.

These include the Object Avoidance Feature - Bobcat is testing solutions that help a machine realize a known object based on images taken in augmented reality mode and prevent the machine from colliding with that object.

With the Semi-autonomous Feature, the company is working on automating some repetitive tasks which require little to no personnel to perform, to make the job site more productive and safer.

As job sites change by type, size or location, another new technology Bobcat is working on is Features On Demand for selected compact loaders. This technology enables customers to explore hardware and software features embedded on their machine. These can be activated and purchased at any time in the future. Initially these features will be enabled by the dealer but in the future customers will be able to enable them and many more features using a subscription platform.

Vijayshekhar Nerva, Innovation and acceleration lead, Doosan Bobcat EMEA, added: “We are working with leading companies and exploring far reaching technologies for use on our equipment. To make work at the job site more productive, safer, environmentally friendly and cost effective.”

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