Volvo Construction Equipment loads more African gains with G-Series loaders
The G-Series is suited for bucket and re-handling duties in applications such as small quarries and cement factories.
Despite current challenging market conditions in Africa, IIkay Fidan, business director for Hub South (Africa) at Volvo Construction Equipment (CE) Sales Region EMEA, says Volvo CE has seen increased market share, especially driven by the Volvo L60Gz, L90Gz and L120Gz wheel loader models.
“We have been rolling out these models in Africa this year and this has helped us increase our market share,” says Fidan. “We have been investing heavily together with our dealer partners to improve aftermarket capabilities and offer our Volvo Trade Finance. These have been two key contributors to our success,” adds Fidan.
Fidan however alludes to the fact that generally all African markets have been negatively affected by commodity prices. “Producers are looking for off-balance sheet solutions, so the equipment rental industry is playing an increasingly important role in some African countries of late,” he tells Equipment Africa.
Officially launched at Volvo CE’s traditional Volvo Days in Sweden in June 2015, the G-Series wheel loader range, comprising the L60Gz, L90Gz and L120Gz, is a simplified version of the previous F-Series line-up. It loses the extra bells and whistles to slightly lower its upfront cost, but retains the same all crucial powertrain components found on its predecessor.
While the G-Series loses some of the sophisticated features, it has retained a host of standard fuel saving features. Unique to Volvo CE, the eco pedal ensures fuel consumption is kept at a minimum by applying mechanical push-back force when engine rev per minute (rpm) is about to exceed the efficient operating range. “The eco pedal encourages the operator to engage the throttle pedal with ease to lower fuel consumption, by applying the appropriate amount of mechanical counter pressure (push-back). This pedal feature promotes operator efficiency by avoiding excessive fuel use,” says Masood Akar, Volvo CE EMEA’s product manager for wheel loaders.
Meanwhile, the Automatic Power Shift allows the machine to operate in the best gear according to speed, kick down and engine braking. The Fully Automatic Power Shift (FAPS) automatically switches to first gear when additional power is needed for lower fuel consumption. “FAPS ensures optimal operation by adjusting machine gears in line with parameters including engine and travel speed, for comfortable gear changes and fast cycle times.”
The Z-bar linkage is said to offer higher breakout forces for powerful digging and complete bucket fill when loading. This is complemented by load-sensing hydraulics said to supply power only when needed, significantly lowering fuel consumption. Bucket pins are double sealed to keep grease inside the bearing and dirt out, ensuring long pin and bearing life. Automatic bucket leveller and boom kick-out functions accurately stop the bucket and linkage in adjustable, pre-selected positions.
|Engine||Volvo D6E||Volvo D6E||Volvo D7E|
|Max power||114 kW||128 kW||179 kW|
|Max torque||1 700rpm||1 700rpm||1 700rpm|
|Bucket sizes||1,8 – 3,5m³||2,4 – 4,5m3||3,1 – 5,2m³|
|Operating weight||12,3 – 12,8t||14,5 – 15,2t||18 – 19t|
|Static tipping load||7 680kg||10 230kg||12 120kg|
Equipment Africa says: Simplicity in the design and manufacture of construction equipment may just be the top attribute of innovation. Value brands’ 80% market share globally is enough testimony of what the contractor needs – a simple tool that just gets the job done at a cost-effective production rate. The Volvo G-Series range showcases the evolution of a simple tool in the construction equipment space, and Volvo CE is among the few premium makers who have grasped this trend very well.