Are you looking to upgrade your old rubber tyred skid steer loader, but you're not sure what to buy?
You're probably thinking you've seen the whole range of makes and models available out there at one time or another, and heard both good and bad about each and every one of them.
Feeling confused? Maybe. Want to see something new and a little different? Probably. Well here it is in black and white, quite literally.
No they are not black and white photos; recently EERM tested the all new Terex TSR-60, the 60hp radial lift variant of Terex's new line of rubber tyred skid steer loaders.
Released in Australia this year, they complement Terex's already wellestablished range of rubber track machines.
The rubber tyred product line features eight models, ranging from 50hp to 83hp with or without optional vertical lift, ranging in weight from just under 3 ton, to just under four.
The "Terex" brand may not have a long association with skid steer loaders, but then again, when they bought the controlling share of ASV Posi-Track in 2008, they bought with it a wealth of knowledge and depth of experience difficult to put a price on.
The full Terex skid steer product line, including the ever evolving "Posi-Track" is built in the USA, and distributed in Australia by ASV Sales & Service in conjunction with a comprehensive dealer network.
On a recent rainy autumn day, we were hosted by Bris-Vegas Machinery and Crystal Waters Nursery when we put the TSR-60 through its paces. Tipping the scales at 2939kg and producing 44.7kW (or 60hp in the old money) via an interim tier 4 compliant, 2.2 litre turbo-charged four cylinder Perkins diesel, Terex/ASV are quietly confident that the TSR-60 has all the makings of a best seller.
The TSR-60 has an operating capacity of 680kg, and a tipping clearance of 2921mm to the bucket pivot pin, making it well suited to load most 10m tippers quickly and efficiently.
There is also an optional two-speed hydrostatic drive system enabling the machine to propel itself at speeds of up to 19.3km/hr, or marginally under 12km/hr without.
Although I am told the two-speed system is capable of being engaged "on the fly", it comes in just a little bit harsh at high rpm for my liking and could pose a problem with driveline reliability down the track.
That said, Terex provides peace of mind with standard 36-month extended powertrain coverage, and claims to be one of the only manufacturers that authorises over-the-tyre track usage without warranty limitations.
The operator environment is vastly improved on the former "Posi-Track" cabs of days gone by. You can immediately identify the jump in quality with the new ROPS and optional sealed and pressurised operator station, however there were a couple of very minor things that let down the overall finish just slightly.
The cab door latch assembly is a bit light and flexes in your hand when opening and closing. The joystick control consoles were not properly secured at the base and moved around a little, making a melody of rattles when traversing rough ground. In saying that, these could quite easily be rectified with a little adjustment, and would in most cases be remedied at the dealer pre-delivery.
The over centre style right foot accelerator/decelerator pedal holds the throttle position you desire after your foot is removed. This took a little getting used to at first but quickly became an ally rather than an adversary.
But probably the greatest feature of all was the factory-fitted hydraulic quick-hitch unit that can be operated from the comfort of the operator's cabin. Access to daily service points is easy enough thanks to the swing-out cooling package design.
Access to major service components takes only slightly more effort via a lift-up ROPS cab/canopy. Ground clearance is a generous 266.7mm, only slightly impeded by the auxiliary counterweight if fitted. In all, this is a well spec'ed, well-built compact machine with performance to match your expectations.
This compact end of the market appears to be a direction that Terex is eager to head in when you consider its recent venture into the backhoe market.
The Terex name has been around for a very long time. Having built god knows how many haul trucks, loaders, scrapers and various other items of plant, you can be assured that by now they know how to put a tractor together.
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