Caterpillar launches new class 306 CR mini hydraulic excavator

New model expand mini hydraulic excavator line, delivers industry-leading performance

The new Cat 306 CR Mini Hydraulic Excavator marks Caterpillar’s entry in the 6-ton class offering. Designed with improved customer experience in mind, the 306 CR mini excavator is built to exceed customer expectations with strong performance, enhanced operator experience and simplified maintenance with extended service intervals. With standard exclusive features like stick steer and new LCD monitor, it provides a great value for customers and boasts industry-leading performance.

The new Cat 306 CR Mini Hydraulic Excavator marks Caterpillar’s entry in the 6-ton class offering. Courtesy of Caterpillar.

The new mini excavator features heavy-duty main structures, a fuel-efficient engine, load-sensing hydraulics, spacious cab and exclusive Cat Stick Steer system. It shares a similar controls layout and common components with the full line of Cat Next Generation mini excavators to simplify training, offer quick adaptation for operation and lower owning/operating costs.

With its long stick option, the 306 CR delivers a maximum dig depth of 162 in (4 110 mm) and 15,821-lb (7 175-kg) maximum operating weight when equipped with the sealed and pressurized cab. A canopy alternative to the pressurized cab will be available for customers in 2020.  Built with a swing boom, this Next Generation mini excavator’s compact radius design provides a low, 58-in (1 475-mm) tail swing with counterweight for working close to obstructions.

Elevating performance standards

Offering big performance features in a mini excavator, the new Cat 306 CR delivers class-leading lift performance of up to 7,839 lb (3 555 kg) at a 9.8-ft (3-m) radius. Enhanced uphill swing torque and increased cycle times provide greater productivity and efficiency.

The machine’s fuel-saving, load-sensing hydraulic system with an electronically controlled variable-displacement piston pump generates 46 gals/min (173 L/min) hydraulic oil flow. It offers the hydraulic capacity for increased travel performance and higher digging forces than competitive units.

The new mini excavator features heavy-duty main structures, a fuel-efficient engine, load-sensing hydraulics, spacious cab and exclusive Cat Stick Steer system. Courtesy of Caterpillar.

The high flow rate of 24 gal/min (90 L/min) to the auxiliary circuit enables operation of even the most demanding hydromechanical attachments. Complete with quick-disconnect lines, the standard auxiliary hydraulic system provides one-way, two-way and continuous flow.

The Cat C2.4 turbo diesel engine rated at 55.9 net hp (41.7 kW) powers the new 306 CR mini-excavator and meets stringent U.S. EPA Tier 4 Final/Stage V emission standards. It features a power-dense design and delivers consistent performance through a wide speed range. Automatic engine idle and shutdown features help to save on fuel consumption.

Operating efficiency

The design of the new 306 CR Next Generation Mini Hydraulic Excavator emphasizes operator comfort, convenience and safety. Its sealed and pressurized cabin lowers in-cab operating noise levels to 72 dB(A) and is heated and air-conditioned to elevate operator comfort regardless of outside temperatures. The cab’s rollover protective structure (ROPS), tip-over protective structure (TOPS) and top guard combine to promote a safe working environment for the operator.

Offering the ability to set personal operating preferences, the Next Generation LCD monitor provides easy-to-read machine information, jog-dial for simple navigation and standard Bluetooth capability. The colour monitor gives the operator critical operating details such as fuel, coolant temperature, hour meter, performance and machine adjustments, and maintenance and machine monitoring.

The Cat C2.4 turbo diesel engine rated at 55.9 net hp (41.7 kW) powers the new 306 CR mini-excavator and meets stringent U.S. EPA Tier 4 Final/Stage V emission standards. Courtesy of Caterpillar.

With the touch of a button, the operator can switch from conventional lever/foot-pedal steering controls to the standard Cat exclusive Stick Steer system. Stick Steer provides improved operator control with less effort to advance operating simplicity and comfort. For convenience, the intuitive pattern changer allows operators to select their preferred joystick movement for controlling the 306 CR mini excavator.

Straight blade, angled blade and extra tool carrier (XTC) configurations further expand the flexibility of the 306 CR mini excavator. Featuring ample travel, above and below grade operation, float function, and “dig-to-blade” operation, the machine’s blade efficiently handles loose material in backfilling and grading applications. Delivering the extra precision required when digging around utilities, front shovel operation can be accomplished with both pin-on and coupler-mounted buckets.

Enhanced service, lower costs

The new 6-ton class 306 CR Next Generation Mini Hydraulic Excavator shares common components with models in the Cat mini excavator line to lower repair cost, decrease service time and reduce repair parts inventory. Major machine structures – upper and lower frames, track frames, boom and sick – are modelled after its larger Cat excavator counterparts for long-term durability. Recessed to protect from damage in the field, robust flat side panels offer long service life and quick, easy replacement to lower owning and operating costs.

Ground-level access to maintenance checkpoints offers convenient access while enhancing worker safety. Industry-leading grease intervals help to shorten the daily service routine, so this mini excavator gets to work faster. Extended filter service life means the 306 CR mini excavator spends less time in the shop for routine maintenance. 

306 CR product specifications

Engine Cat C2.4 Turbo
Net power, hp (kW) 55.9 (41.7)
Minimum operating weight, cab, lb (kg) 14,299 (6 485)
Maximum operating weight, cab, lb (kg) 15,821 (7 175)
Tail swing Compact
Dig depth, standard, in. (mm) 146 (3 710)
Dig depth, long, in. (mm) 162 (4 110)

 

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Sofia Davalle
Editor at Australia HeavyQuip ournal
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