will shift design and production of its smallest hydraulic to Caterpillar facilities beginning in 2018 as the company phases out a successful, six-year strategic alliance with Wacker Neuson. Caterpillar will focus on growing its global mini-excavator business as it leverages existing facilities and design teams to deliver cost-effective new machines that weigh less than three tons.
Caterpillar’s Building Construction Products division will design and manufacture the new machines, building on the proven attributes of the larger Cat mini-excavators. Five of the current models – the 301.4C; 301.7D; 301.7D CR; 302.2D and 302.4D – manufactured by Wacker Neuson will phase out in mid-2018, and the 302.7D will phase out at the end of 2018. The 300.9D will also phase out at the end of 2019 or later if mutually agreed by both companies.
“Wacker Neuson has been an excellent alliance partner, providing Caterpillar high quality mini-excavators in this smaller size class for the past several years,” said Korey Coon, general manager, mini-hydraulic excavators and small track-type tractors. “The market for these products has grown, and we believe that internally designing, manufacturing and distributing these excavators will provide an even higher value to our customers, dealers and shareholders.”
Spare parts availability, technical support and warranty for current models will continue as Caterpillar and Wacker Neuson work together going forward. Other products sold and serviced by Wacker Neuson at Cat dealers and rental stores will not be affected, Caterpillar said.