A better design, along with refinements to the glass, controls and comfort, "give operators a lot to look forward to in Caterpillar's new F2 series backhoes," reports Wayne Grayson of Equipment World. Recently, at the World of Concrete in Las Vegas, Cat announced the center-pivot model lineup, which includes the 420F2 IT, the 415F2, 416F2 and 430F2.
415F2, the new entry to the lineup, is powered by a Cat C3.4B ACERT engine rated at 68 horsepower. The machine is principally aimed at the rental market and government agencies, and does not require diesel exhaust fluid (DEF).
Meanwhile, the 416F2, 420F2 and 430F2 are each powered by the Cat C4.4 ACERT. They are rated at 87 hp, 93 hp and 108 hp, respectively.
Each offers different features. While the 420F2 and 430F2 are available with both single-tilt and Integrated Tool Carrier (IT) front linkage, four-wheel drive comes standard on the 430F2. Four-wheel drive is also available as an option on the other models.
With the 420F2 and 430F2, you can opt for a six-speed auto-shift transmission. Moreover, the transmission can come with a lock-up torque converter, providing speeds up to 25 miles per hour and greater fuel economy.
All of these features aside, Grayson says that "the most significant changes in the F2 models over their F Series predecessors are related to the cab," explaining "it's a bit easier to enter the cab thanks to an third step. But more importantly, Cat modified the cab design to accommodate flat glass for better visibility and features a new rear window that improves trench sight lines."
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Caterpillar's new lineup offers a lot, according to experts.