Caterpillar bullish despite tough trading conditions
Caterpillarr introduce the 988k wheeled loader
Caterpillar is performing well despite difficult market conditions in Europe, according to chairman and CEO Doug Oberhelman.
The German market is a core operation for the firm. “This is an important market for us. Germany is a competitive market where customers have high expectations,” he said.
“At the moment we’ve got a challenging market around the world for our customers and dealers. Businesses face challenges, particularly here in Europe. Emerging nations are seeing faster growth but they also have challenges.”
The company has come through difficult times and has maintained its strong position in the construction equipment market.
He said, “Despite the worst downturn since the Great Depression, we maintained our credit rating throughout 2008 and 2009. Our goal is to make sure our company is bulletproof.”
Technology forms a core part of Caterpillar’s operations and Oberhelman said, “In 2012 we invested US$2.5 billion into research and development in key areas. We’ve several new products here at bauma.”
The 336 hybrid excavator is a machine Caterpillar is particularly proud of and Oberhelman said, “We’ve 315 patents for the 336H. It represents the state-of-the-art. It offers a 25% fuel saving without loss of performance. We’re also introducing the 988K wheeled loader. It meets Tier 4 emissions standards and also saves up to 20% fuel.”
The firm is keen to highlight the performance of the 336H and claims that payback times for the machine will be 12-24 months. Because it uses hydraulic hybrid technology, this is less costly than some other hybrid systems according to the firm.