Six superb Cat machines

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  • Earthmovers & Exacavators

What are the best Cat machines? Here are 6 superb Cat machines released over the years.

Caterpillar machines are ubiquitous on jobsites across the country. From large and small excavators to graders to trucks to diesel generators, Cat equipment is a favourite of the construction, mining and infrastructure industries. Here are six of our favourite Cat machines.


6 of the best Cat machines

Cat 335F L CR excavator

Cat 335F L CR excavator

The Cat 335F L CR is a compact radius excavator made for heavy work on congested job sites. It’s a 37-tonne earthmover — and it has a very decent blade that makes a tremendous difference on-site. Indeed, just about every mini excavator has one but very few large excavator models have taken up the challenge.

The Cat 335F LCR (CR stands for Compact Radius, L for Long undercarriage) has a very spacious cabin with a large display monitor (that’s easy to use). Noise levels are low and the machine offers easy handling. It’s also Tier 4-compliant.

Hydraulics are powerful and overall operation is smooth, the design drawing inspiration from the Cat bulldozer range. While an operator will need to pay close attention to the position of the blade, the Cat 335F LCR compact radius excavator stands in a class of its own.


Cat 305 E2 mini excavator

Cat 305E2 excavator

Cat excavators might not look like they’ve changed much over the years, but they’re packed with innovation.

The 5.1-tonne Cat 305E2 compact radius excavator is a sturdy machine. The body, rear engine door, side hydraulic system and radiator cover are all constructed from steel.

With 200-degree bucket rotation it’s a stable and smooth excavator that cuts through dirt and throws it around with ease. As you would expect from Caterpillar, Cat mini excavators are available with a dazzling array of buckets and attachments.

Seasoned operators will appreciate the absence of foot pedals, the longer bucket stroke (for easier wall cleaning and truck loading), and the new COMPASS control panel. This last one is system designed specifically for mini excavators. Even better, the Cat 305E2 mini excavator comes with a passcode-activated security system.


Cat 924K wheel loader

Cat 924K wheel loader

The Cat 924K is a versatile wheel loader that sits at close to 13 tonnes. Although a Cat wheel loader is a machine that would traditionally be found on a worksite like a quarry, the example shown here operates on a bulk cattle feed lot.

This model had an Australian-designed and locally-manufactured 3-cubic-metre lightweight bucket from McCormack Industries. This allows it to efficiently pick up 2 tonnes with a quick release bucket.

A 140hp (105kW) Cat engine drives the Cat 924K wheel loader. Coupled to the hydrostatic drive, handling is effortless and smooth. All side covers lift in an upward motion, allowing for good access for the operator or fitter to complete those compulsory daily checks and servicing.

The Cat 924K wheel loader is an efficient and reliable machine with no mechanical or technical issues identified on this model after the first 100 hours of operation.


Caterpillar 740 articulated dump truck

Cat 740 Articulated Dump Truck

The Caterpillar 740 articulated dump truck (ADT) is a well-made workhorse capable of moving mountain of material over a long distance for an economical price at speed.

Caterpillar’s team of engineers forayed into the manufacturing of ADTs back in the 1980s and the resulting Caterpillar 740 articulated dump truck was one of the early models to arrive in Australia.

The Cat 740 ADT is at the top of its class. It is one of the most popular articulated dump truck on the market, is the most sought after size and model of its range, and can move all types of materials over long distances in most types of terrain.

It hauls vegetation, tree stumps, rocks and just anything else, typically on rough and unfinished roads. After 9000 hours of use, this example continues to happily travel at 55kmh with a payload of 23 cubic metres, or 38 tonnes of material.


Cat 239D compact track loader

Cat 239D compact track loader

The Cat 239D compact track loader is a machine with all the bells and whistles. It features an enclosed, sealed and pressurised cabin; fully suspended undercarriage; and low ground pressure tracks.

Its radial lift design delivers impressive mid-lift reach and excellent digging performance, with power coming from a Caterpillar C2.2 engine, pumping out 44kW or about 60hp.

The air-ride suspended seat is a stand-out feature. Linked to the joysticks so they move in sync, it takes a little bit of getting used to. However, it massively improves operator comfort, and a 12-hour day in the Cat 239D doesn’t feel like a day inside the cab of some other machines.

With a standard operating weight of 3306kg, the Cat 239D compact track loader is the smallest of in the Caterpillar D-Series. Four other models are available that upsize in approximate 500kg increments, the largest being the Cat 289D at 4778kg.


Cat 140M grader

Cat 140M grader

The Caterpillar 140M grader saw the beginning of the new era for Cat graders. With the Cat 140M came huge technological improvements in safety, production, operator comfort, ergonomic design, fuel efficiency and vision. This example here, with a mere 7000 hours on the clock, is a case in point.

It is powered by the Cat C7 ACERT turbo-diesel engine, pushing out 136kW or 183hp. The entire machine is a combination of smooth controls, operator friendliness, good vision and heaps of power. Indeed, a standout feature is the cab, with its all-glass surrounds and unimpeded vision.

The Caterpillar 140M grader weighs about 19 tonnes. It has a 412-litre fuel tank, an-easy-to-maintain 12-inch blade, and eight forward (47km/h) and six reverse (37km/h) direct-drive PowerShift. Its turning radius is 7.6m.

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