Cat introduces the 988K XE, its first electric drive wheel loader

Therese Dunphy

August 24, 2017

CAT Wheel Loader
The new 988K XE is Cat’s first wheel loader to feature a high-efficiency electric drive system.

 

The new Cat 988K XE is the first wheel loader offered by Caterpillar with a high-efficiency electric drive system. This new wheel loader joins the 988K and the recently launched 986K wheel loaders as cost-effective loader options for various application. The 988K XE is recommended for job sites where fuel efficiency makes a difference in the machine’s total cost of operation.

The new loader features switched reluctance (SR) technology and leverages more than 15 years of Cat electric drive experience and more than four years of testing in a range of applications for proven reliability in the field. It features the same C18 ACERT engine, mechanical dropbox, driveline, and axles as the 988K remain for consistent, trouble-free operation.

Efficiency and productivity

Offering increased truck loading and load-and-carry efficiency, the new 988K XE is said to increase efficiency by 25 percent overall and by up to 49 percent in face-loading applications, as compared to the 988K. This reduces costs and helps operations reduce greenhouse gas emissions and carbon footprint. At the same time, Caterpillar production studies report the new loader delivers up to 10 percent higher productivity in load-and-carry applications.

The new Cat 988K XE loader offers a range of bucket capacities from 6.2 to 17 cubic yards. Rated standard and high lift payload for the loader reaches 12.5 tons when working with face material and 16 tons with loose material. Advansys Series Ground Engaging Tools (GET) protect bucket components and reduce operating costs, so operations can get the most out of machine performance.

The standard 988K XE wheel loader is performance matched to offer efficient three-pass loading of the 42.6-ton Cat 770G and four-pass loading of the 51-ton Cat 772. Its high-lift configuration delivers five-pass loading of the 61-ton  Cat 773G and six-pass loading of the 70.5-ton Cat 775G.

Lower ownership costs

Cat electric drive technology found in the new 988K XE lowers overall maintenance costs, while increasing engine life expectancy. Offering extended oil change intervals of 2,000 hours, the electric drive wheel loader uses 40 percent less powertrain oil.

The SR drive motor, generator, and inverter are built to last through the second engine life with minimum maintenance. Additionally, the efficient electric drive design increases engine life by up to 3,500 hours, extending time between powertrain rebuilds.

To assist with electric drive rebuilds, Caterpillar offers customers service training material, backed by customer support from the Cat dealer network. Remanufactured drive motors, generators, and inverters will also be available to reduce rebuild cost.

Similar operation, greater productivity

Slight changes inside the cab of the new 988K XE provide operators with the familiar functions and feel of the 988K. At the same time, operators will experience improved handling smoothness and ease of operation. The new loader offers a single speed range, so the machine efficiently operates without the need for gear shifting. New virtual gears help to control machine ground speed and deliver smooth direction shifts.

The standard Cat Product Link offers remote data monitoring through VisionLink, so key personnel can stay informed of critical machine operating data.  Fuel usage, payload summaries, scheduled service reminders, fault code alerts, and various productivity reports are available to help improve machine management.  Additionally, the onboard Vital Information Management System (VIMS) provides the operator with operating data such as real-time fuel consumption and fuel efficiency via an interactive touch screen display.

The new Cat 988K XE loader is equipped with technology solutions to increase operating efficiency and machine uptime. Cat Production Measurement (CPM) brings payload weighing to the cab, so operators can work more productively and deliver accurate loads with confidence. CPM offers advanced weighing modes, which assist with payload accuracy and increase loading cycle speed.

Optional Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS) is a fully integrated Cat feature, which enables operators to monitor tire inflation. Available through the VIMS display, the operator can view each tire’s pressure and take action when needed to reduce wear and increase service life.

Operators can safely access the cab via left- or right-hand stairs built at a reduced 45-degree angle and maintain three points of contact at all times. The STIC steer armrest easily folds up, allowing the operator to quickly enter the cab. Isolation cab mounts and an air-suspension seat reduce vibration transmitted to the operator for increased comfort, while the enclosed pressurized structure reduces operator sound levels. The automatic, in-cab temperature control system maintains operator comfort even in extreme temperatures.

Product specifications

Engine Cat C18 ACERT
Gross Power 588 horsepower
Operating Weight – Standard 116,362 pounds
Operating Weight – High Lift 119,618 pounds
Rated Payload – Standard (face/loose) 12.5 tons  / 16 tons
Rated Payload – High Lift (face/loose) 12.5 tons / 16 tons
Bucket Capacity Range 6.2 to 17 cubic yards
Dump Clearance – Standard 11.5 feet
Dump Clearance – High Lift 12.7 feet

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