Rock Solid Performance
Praise for a New Process and Product
A new development approach leads to accolades for Tier 4i motor graders.
Just one year after its release, Caterpillar's new Cat® M2-Series motor grader continues to gain accolades for its superior performance, reliability and productivity. Although customer satisfaction is what really counts, the process leading up to its release gained praise itself — raising the bar and setting higher standards for new product introduction at Caterpillar.
The Cat M2 was Caterpillar's first machine introduced to meet a new round of emission standards in North America and Europe — Tier 4 Interim (Tier 4i) standards for the United States and Stage IIIB standards in the European Union (EU).
According to Caterpillar Motor Grader New Product Introduction (NPI) Manager Jeff Castleman, the sheer magnitude of teamwork and collaboration involved was extremely well orchestrated — spanning four continents and representing Caterpillar's product development team, manufacturing facilities and supply base.
"This truly is a great example of Caterpillar at its best, in terms of global collaboration, to make sure we excel at product development," explained Castleman. "The team went in with a very aggressive plan to execute and deliver a new product introduction that not only met emission requirements, but also offers superior value to our customers."
One year post-introduction, Castleman said, "The dealer's feedback on the Cat M2-Series has been very positive. They specifically saw improvements in machine performance, as well as feature improvements that not only provide value to the customer, but also make their jobs easier."
Cat® dealer Empire Machinery Sales Manager Kevin Shanley said the introduction of Tier 4i emissions technology to the Cat M2 has been a seamless transition for Empire and its clients. "From our perspective, Cat M2 motor graders have been outstanding," he explained. "We've had several customers tell us the initial difference in performance is excellent, and over time they have seen considerable fuel savings, excellent reliability and improved uptime. Based on positive customer feedback, strong initial quality metrics and the high confidence of our account managers, the Cat M2 has more than delivered in performance and reliability."
Built on the strengths of the M-Series predecessors, the Cat 120M2, Cat 12M2, Cat 140M2 and Cat 160M2 feature new engines, revolutionary joystick controls and integrated technologies that help the customer do more work in less time at a lower total cost. Other added features include a new ripper design, swing open cooling package, anti-icing glass and Cat® Grade Control.
"The new swing out radiator on the M2-Series makes our routine maintenance a lot easier," said Bobby Aiken, road department Superintendent for Seminole County, Georgia, "It's a lot less downtime for us."
Since the release of the Cat M2, multiple products have gone into production with Tier 4i — medium wheel loaders, articulated trucks, track-type tractors and more. The next round of emissions regulations, Tier 4 Final, takes effect January 1, 2014.
"Throughout the introduction of the Cat M2, the commitment to continuously improve the overall development and execution process was unprecedented," said Global Motor Grader Product Manager Pat O'Connell. "We're building and improving on this foundation as we prepare for Tier 4 Final."