First Drive: New Holland LM 5060
New Holland has been dabbling in the telehandler market for nearly 10 years. But with the introduction of new, home-grown loaders, the blue brand now appears to be keen to strengthen its offering.
Since 1998 French loader specialist Manitou has produced a limited line-up of loaders, virtually identical to its own, but painted in the yellow and, latterly, blue liveries of New Holland.
But last year an announcement was made that this agreement would end and New Holland would look to adapt some of its own construction machines specifically for agriculture.
The result? A brand new blue telehandler, which was wheeled out at the Cereals event in June last year to get a feeling for what British farmers made of it.
Since then the LM5000 range has undergone a series of further changes to answer the criticisms that were initially thrown at it.
So that explains the wait.
Late last year we managed to get our hands on a LM5060. Middle model in a range of three, it lifts 4t and can reach heights of up to 7.1m.
The machine tested came in “Plus” spec, which means it boasts a four-speed powershift rather than the Delta-designation manual box.
It also gains air-con and a variable output hydraulic pump that will churn out 145-litres/min, compared to the standard 130-litre fixed displacement unit.
New Holland LM 5060 Images
ENGINE: New Holland LM 5060
New Holland LM 5060
- Cavernous cabin
- Smooth powershift/clutch dump
- Simple “Jump-on-and-drive” controls
- Good rearward views
- Awkward joystick action
- Slow boom extend/retract
- Vulnerable rigid tail-lights (NH says it will sort this)
- No centralised boom greasing
On all models the engine is the same 120hp 4-cyl NEF unit used in certain T6000 tractors and developed by the European Engine Alliance (EAA) which includes Iveco, Cummins and Case New Holland.
Its positioning is a break from tradition. Previous Manitou-built LM-A units had their power-plant perched in the tail. The new machine tucks its motor under its right wing.
This does wonders for visibility and lowers the boom pivot, getting rid of the LM-A’s hunchback look and making for clear views rearwards.
New Holland also makes the point that mounting it longitudinally – rather than transversely – means drive is channelled in the right direction through the various gear- and transfer-boxes and does not have to snake its way through power-sapping bevel gears to make its way to the axles.
SO WHAT’S IT LIKE TO DRIVE? New Holland LM 5060
It’s only as you approach the LM5060 that you realise the size of its cab. It quite literally takes up every inch between the front and rear wheels and is claimed to be the largest on the market.
But to appreciate it you’ve got to get in first – and here’s a word of warning.
The Italian designers have opted for a one-piece door frame that remains as one even when you’ve got the top window latched back. This means the frame juts out right at eye-level when you swing the door open, making for the perfect Glasgow kiss.
Our guess is that once it arrives on farm the door-frame might well receive the gas-and-grinder treatment. (New Holland says it is reviewing the design.)
Once seated in the cavernous cabin, the views really are impressive. It’s roomy and even the lankiest of operators will struggle to find fault with legroom, although there is that inevitable elbow crunch on the door-pillar that all off-set cab handlers suffer from.
In fact, the cab is so long that there’s almost room for a buddy-seat in the back – canine companions will be impressed and New Holland has the opportunity to add a decent-sized tool-box that will put any tractor to shame.
External stowage space is equally impressive. Under the cab there’s a compartment big enough to store a good selection of fencing gear.
Transmission controls are pretty much standard fare. Knock the shuttle-lever forward and the machine starts moving, twist its collar and it slickly shifts up a gear.
There’s a clutch-dump button on the joystick that allows the operator to give the handler a bit of right foot when it’s required without it surging forward. At the flick of a switch this is replicated on the brake-pedal and its operation is silky smooth compared with other machines on the market.
When it comes down to the hydraulics, oil-flow is more than adequate, although boom extend/retract is painfully slow when you’re using other functions simultaneously. New Holland says to extend service intervals and avoid temperature build-up, larger rams are now used, with the hydraulic circuits running at lower pressures.
It’s the joystick itself that doesn’t really measure up. It looks pretty much what you’d expect, with a roller-switch for proportional control of boom extend/retract and buttons for the auxiliary services.
And you get the boom to raise and lower in the conventional way. But, rather than tilt the stick to crowd or dump your attachment, you’ve got to twist it – an action which quickly becomes uncomfortable (even for those with well-exercised wrists).
When it comes to maintenance the LM5060 needs to pull its proverbial socks up too.
Simple things make servicing a chore – boom grease-points aren’t centralised so it’s back to aimlessly wandering round in the hope of finding erroneous nipples. (The competition – namely Claas and Manitou – have taken to grouping boom pivot greasers together.)
Verdict: New Holland LM 5060
NEW HOLLAND LM 5060 PLUS PROFILE
|Max lift||7.1 metres|
|Max lift capacity||4 tonnes|
|Engine||4.5-litre CNH/Iveco 4-cyl turbo (100% biodiesel compatible)|
|Transmission||4-speed torque-converter powershift|
|Price||£50,667 (incl. hyd. attachment locking, pick-up hitch, trailer-brakes and rear hyd. service)|
Do we like it? The answer is a definite yes, particularly because of its class-leading cabin.
But, as with all new machines, it has a few niggles that need sorting out.
The LM5060 is a quiet, capable performer. List price is certainly on the low side and service intervals at 600-hours are good. Add to that New Holland’s claim of having the smallest turning circle and you’ve got a nimble, comfortable, good value loader.
Rivals: New Holland LM 5060
|Manitou MLT741-120||JCB 541-70||Merlo P40.7||Claas Scorpion 7040|