US equipment manufacturer Volteq launched a new electric mini loader last week that it claims is ready to go toe-to-toe with the diesel-powered competition. In addition to quieter, smoother operation, reduced maintenance, and no-drip job site readiness, the new Sky 1000 loader has one more trick up its sleeve: remote control.
“Our battery-powered solution offers numerous advantages, including quieter operation, enhanced safety with less vibration, and incredible cost savings on the total cost of ownership,” Patrik Psenak, CEO of Volteq, told Equipment World. “The Sky 1000 is a testament to our commitment to delivering innovative and sustainable equipment solutions to meet the evolving needs of our customers.”
The killer app, though, is Volteq’s RC tech.
Volteq’s Sky 1000 is designed for conventional stand-on operation, but when a better view is needed, users can fire up the remote control system to operate the machine using the standard controls – they can be detached from the machine to create a “mobile operator station” that maneuvers the Sky from up to 160 feet away.
Volteq says this feature provides operators with enhanced visibility for a clear line of sight in work areas with increased safety concerns and reduces operators’ exposure to dust and vibrations in demolition or mining applications.
Volteq Sky 1000 remote control mini loader
Speaking of safety, both the control panel and the physical machine are equipped with emergency stop buttons in case something happens to the operator or they can’t reach it in time.
The Sky 1000 mini loader is fitted with a 20.48 kWh li-ion battery that Volteq claims is good for up to 8 hours of continuous operation. The IP67-rated battery is resistant to water and dust ingress and is compatible with both 110V and 220V outlets (which, obviously, will charge the battery at different speeds).
Volteq claims its batteries have a 10- to 15-year lifespan with minimal maintenance requirements, and that its loaders and dozers can be used with existing Volteq implements, as well as attachments compatible with Common Industry Interface (CII) attachment plate.”
The Sky 1000 electric mini loader is available for pre-order now, with delivery promised later this year.
Volteq’s CEO claims the company isn’t, “here to replace the diesel machine, but we are here to fill in the gap in the market,” but that’s just lip-service to keep the Luddites at the equipment dealers from swinging Enoch’s hammer at the things.
But, with ever-increasing noise and safety regulations, the proliferation of no-drip job sites, and the number of companies adopting ambitious ESG goals, the days of diesel are already numbered. Tools like Volteq’s (with plenty of industry compatibility on both the implement and telematics side of things baked in) are just going to make diesel’s reign even shorter.