Wacker Neuson has entered the compact utility loader market with the SM100, which has a 1,000-pound rated operating capacity.
"We feel this machine fits our channel well," says Joe Miller, vice president of sales and marketing, Wacker Neuson. He also notes that this machine category has seen significant growth in the past few years.
Featuring 9-inch-wide tracks for applications requiring low ground pressure, the 35.5-inch-wide SM100 easily fits through doorways and gates. Powered by a 24.7-horsepower Yanmar diesel, the 3,000-pound-operating-weight unit has a radial lift path and a hinge pin height of 85.7 inches for dumping into high-sided trucks.
The step-up-and-go spring-loaded operator's platform uses an operator presence system to prevent accidental movement of the lift arm and travel functions. If an operator steps off the platform, these functions are no longer operable. "Some of the early designs in the industry required an operator to hold on to operate, which is taxing to your hands," Miller says. "Now you simply stand on the machine."
"We spend a lot of time on the controls," Miller says. Forward-angled joysticks position the operator's hand in the neutral position. The left hand rest circles the left joystick, and the right hand rest provides a straight segment for grabbing, giving additional stability when going over rough terrain. "You can rest your hands on here and get full mobility with the machine," Miller says. "Especially in rental, you're dealing with a lot of novice operators, so you want the controls to be ergonomic and simple to use."
A sloped hood gives visibility to attachments and the front work area. A common industry attachment interface allows the use of compatible attachments. Front-mounted coolers keep hot or dirty air off the operator's legs. In addition, the triple-flanged rollers on the undercarriage reduce wear and de-tracking. "The raised drive motor is out of the dirt, which helps provide undercarriage reliability and long life," Miller says.
Wacker Neuson has several entries in the compact equipment field, including skid steers, compact track loaders and compact excavators, and started looking at adding a compact utility loader four years ago, he says. (Wacker calls the machine a "utility track loader." The exact nomenclature for these machines is still shaking out; competitive machines have also been called compact track loaders, mini skid steers, mini track loaders and stand-on skid steers.)
The SM100 is produced in the company's Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin, plant.