We are constantly in pursuit of educating the customer on the value proposition of the various attachments and their roles in critical applications.
S Manjunath ,
General Manager – Sales ,
Doosan Bobcat India.
Bobcat has always been a market leader leading from the front in terms of educating customers about the skid steer loader machines and various attachments. “Our endeavour has always been to help customers with solutions that offer value for their money. With wide range of products, Bobcat is better placed to meet the demand when the awareness increases, states S Manjunath, General Manager – Sales, Doosan Bobcat India. In an exclusive chat with Equipment Times, Manjunath throws light on the growth prospects of skid steer segment.
What is the range offered by Doosan in skid steers?
Bobcat’s strength is its wide range. We have two main categories based on the geometry of lift arm which is radial and vertical lift path. Also, the different models we offer are based on the engine power and the rated operating capacity.
We offer 5 models of skid steer loader and 2 models of compact track loader. Starting with the Bobcat S70 which carries a 23Hp engine and has a rated operating capacity of 318 KG to the largest skid steer loader available in India the Bobcat S770 equipped with a 92 Hp engine and rated operating capacity of 1570 kg. In-between we have the S450 which is the largest selling and flagship model, S590 and S650. We have 2 models in the compact track loader line up – T650 and T770 in track loaders. In addition to the machines, more than 70 Bobcat attachments are available for the various skid steer models.
Right now Bobcat offers 7 models in India. However being global leader in compact segment, we have a wide range of products which is readily available and can be introduced in India if the market requires for a particular application.
How do you ensure enhanced visibility and safety on your range?
Bobcat design team has come up with the cab forward design which allows the operator to see the bucket edge or attachment without leaning forward and thereby resulting in safe and efficient operation. Visibility has been significantly increased in all directions. Lowered rear screen and cooling package improves rear visibility which is critical while reversing at high speed. Also, the side windows are made larger increasing the visibility to the tires and the sides when the loader arms are raised. With regard to safety Bobcat machines are equipped with rollover protective structure (ROPS), and falling object protective structure (FOPS).
How fuel efficient and productive your range of skid steers?
We, at Bobcat, proudly claim that our skid loaders offered for Indian market today are the most fuel efficient as the power to weight ratio is best in the industry. The dual path cooling system is unique only to Bobcat which provides effective engine cooling at extreme working conditions which also increases the fuel efficiency of the engine.
Tell us about the innovations in hydraulics.
Bobcat loaders consistently meet high expectations for performance. The design, balance and weight distribution deliver more usable horsepower, powerful breakout forces and faster cycle times. The machines work quicker, lift more and outperform to meet various jobsite requirements. Each component – including the engine, pumps, and hydraulic system are engineered to deliver maximum hydraulic performance which results to faster cycle times and better on-site productivity.
Tell us about the cooling system used?
Cooling on Bobcat loaders features the exclusive ‘smart fan’ that only turns as fast as needed resulting in reduced load on engine and increasing fuel efficiency. The patented design of dual path cooling system cools more efficiently, while the radiator and hydraulic oil cooler are protected from jobsite hazards. Higher the cooling system capacity means long working hours without overheating issues.
What is the scope for machine control technologies / telematics in skid steer segment?
Telematics in skid steer loader like any other construction equipment is mainly to monitor the asset condition which is in a remote location. Currently, we are not seeing a lot of pull from SSL customer for telematics because the numbers of large fleet customer are very limited. However, the growing demand from rental, road construction, process industries and waste management segments give us an indication that telematics will be needed for skid steer loaders in the future. In developed markets like US and Europe, Bobcat is already offering telematics system, called ‘Connected Machine’ that offers remote access to information including location, machine health, performance, fuel levels, operator performance. So when the market is ready we will offer in our products.
What is the scope of compact tracked loaders in India?
Since India is still in the development stage, right now even skid steer loaders require a lot of market creation activity to create awareness and increase utilisation. Also with respect to India, mobility is a key consideration so wheeled machines are always at an advantage.
Generally compact track loaders are preferred where the ground conditions require more traction like clay, sand, slushy or the ground should not be disturbed like landscaping. Pressure exerted on ground by the CTL is less and hence preferred. But we offer track over tire options which can be mounted over the existing tires of SSL and it can work like track loader which can be again removed when not needed. We feel that for time being CTL will only be used in niche application where it is absolutely needed.
What is the market trends with regards to use of different attachments? Also tell us on the attachments on offer?
Attachments are the major contributors towards improved utilization and effective replacement of manpower. However, we see that the adoption of attachment is conservative. In India, Bobcat offers more than 70 attachments. Apart from the standard bucket, the most common attachments we have sold in the construction segment are the hydraulic breaker, auger, pallet fork, combination bucket, sweeper and vibratory roller.
As the product’s strength and growth depends on providing solution, we are constantly in pursuit of educating the customer on the value proposition of the various attachments and their roles in critical applications. One of the areas where we are seeing adoption of using attachments is the road segment where Bobcat attachments has been leading the initiative and has made great inroads industry with its grader, sweeper, auger, brushcat, vibratory roller and planer attachments. Customers have reported great savings by using these attachments and we hope this will encourage other customers as well.