Now comes loader
By Andrew Faulkner
MOST manufacturers spread new product launches throughout the year. Not New Holland.
Within just 14 days of announcing an all-new 60-160hp tractor line-up, the firm has now launched a new three-model range of backhoe loaders.
Badged NH75, NH85 and NH95, the loaders replace the firms seven-year-old D series models which, New Holland admits, had become outdated and were overdue for a change. Hence, the arrival of the new machines – the first construction equipment to get both the New Holland name and corporate leaf.
The Ford name has certainly had a tough time in the construction sector over the past six years; its UK backhoe market share has nose dived from 12% to 6%. Combined with a general construction industry slump, the takeover by Fiat in May 1991 only added to the uncertainty surrounding the marques future in this sector.
A $25m investment by Fiat in the new loaders should allay those fears.
Emphasising the Italian connection, the NH75, NH85 and NH95 will all be built at Fiats Modena plant where a new production line has recently been installed. Cabs and front loaders are also made in Italy.
In fact, its almost an exclusively in-house affair. All three models are powered by four-cylinder Genesis engines from New Hollands Basildon plant, while backhoes and rear axles are built in the firms Belgian factories.
Main changes over the previous D series machines are improved operator comfort and a strengthening of components – "beefing up" has gone into front and rear ends and construction is now chassis-based as opposed to monocoque.
For the operator, the most notable change will probably be the Modena-built cab – now very much a mid-1990s platform compared with the outdated 80s D-series cabin it replaces.
Outside the cab, access to daily service points has also been improved. Topping up the oil and diesel tanks no longer mean clambering onto the bonnet – the tanks are now mounted by the steps on either side of the cab – and all maintenance checks are clustered behind one panel at the front of the machine.
• Construction and farming are not as far removed as one might think. About 35% of New Hollands 63 agricultural dealers (152 outlets) in the UK also hold specialist backhoe franchises, selling to farm and drainage contractors as well as the general construction sector.
Loader lift capacity (t)18.104.22.168
Loader dump height (m/ft)2.8/9.22.7/8.92.7/8.9
Backhoe loading height (m/ft)
(with extending dipper)4.5/14.84.6/15.14.6/15.1
Backhoe loading reach (m/ft)
(with extending dipper)2.6/8.52.8/9.22.8/9.2
Price (£) (with extending dipper)37,80039,25040,150
New Hollands updated backhoes get an all-over beefing-up and improved operator environment.