Backhoe basics: Al Shirawi launches the Case 570T

PMV Middle East visits the equipment yard of Al Shirawi Enterprises in Dubai for the long-awaited launch of the Case 570T backhoe loader in the UAE

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Good things come to those who wait, or so they say, and such it seems is the philosophy of Al Shirawi Enterprises as it finally chose this month to launch Case Construction Equipment’s entry-level 570T backhoe loader — a regionally popular but hitherto locally unavailable machine — in the UAE.

The Case 570T backhoe loader is a machine with power and weight ratings just a little below the Case 580T. It also fulfils a vital role in the CNH Industrial brand’s product range in the region by competing on a similar footing to JCB’s 3CXG entry-level backhoe loader.

Both machines were launched in 2014 in many developing markets, and began their rollout in the Middle East in 2015, and are also are fiercely competitive with the Case 580T in terms of their pricing. It is therefore likely a relief for the Case team that the Case 570T is now available in the UAE.

Al Shirawi Enterprises delayed the rollout of the Case 570T backhoe loader for a couple of reasons. The first is the company’s rigorous approach to the trial and testing of all new equipment before it begins distribution to its customers, and the second is that the model, as an entry-level offering, is the first Case backhoe machine for Middle East markets that is produced in Asia rather than Europe.

PMV Middle East catches up with Zane Barnard, CNHI Industrial’s Dubai-based earthmoving product specialist, at the long-awaited product launch by Al Shirawi to discuss the timing, as well as the value proposition of the 570T to the customer.

He explains: “It’s globally built: the componentry comes from Italy or from Germany; the hydraulics are Bosch Rexroth; the transmission is Carraro Drive Tech; and the engine is FPT Industrial (from CNH Industrial) — so the componentry behind it is international, but it’s assembled in India.”

The decision to shift production of the entry-level model to Asia was a logical step for CNH Industrial as part of its efforts to deliver a price-competitive product. In India, the group not only enjoys lower labour costs, but at the time already had an established facility in Pithampur, in the state of Madhya Pradesh, producing backhoes for local markets.

Barnard notes: “Pricing wise, man-hours in the European market are a bit more expensive.”

CNH was nevertheless keenly aware of the scrutiny under which it might come in shifting Middle East production from Europe to Asia, and so carried out a $10m upgrade of the plant in 2014 — prior to the export of any machines.

Since then, considerable care has been taken on an ongoing basis to ensure that quality is maintained, including through the plant’s enrolment in a lean management scheme — providing the customer third-party assurance that the management of the facility is in line with the latest international standards.

Barnard highlights: “They’re recognised as being Silver Level under the World Class Manufacturing programme — so the quality that they are pushing out now is excellent.”

Proof of concept

Beyond these quality assurances, and after several years of distribution in other markets, the 570T has now proved itself in precisely the sort of work environments as those faced by    Al Shirawi Enterprises’ customers.

Barnard notes: “We’ve sold about 600 units of the Case 570T in Saudi Arabia; and Africa has exploded with them. They love the machine there for its large cab and horsepower, and the reliability behind it.”

At the heart of the 570T is a fuel-efficient FPT Industrial S8000 engine — an engine series that is already well-known in Middle East markets and of which more than three million units have been manufactured.

Barnard notes: “The S8000 engine comes out of the agricultural sector: we’ve modified the exhausts and intakes to get it into the 570T engine bay, but it’s robust, reliable and provides more than enough horsepower.”

The result in terms of output is a backhoe loader with 86 HP of gross engine power, a bucket with a lifting capacity of 3.7 tonnes and a dipper with a digging depth of 5.57m when fully extended. The 570T delivers a breakout force of 5,630kgf with its bucket and a digging force of 4,300kgf at the tip of its dipper.

Barnard adds: “Most people don’t realise that CNH has its own engine building facility, and that FPT, or Fiat Power Train, is the fourth largest engine manufacturer in the world. They also don’t realise that CNH owns high-end products like Ferrari and Maserati.”

The turbocharged, four-cylinder FPT S8000 engine is also equipped with an air-to-air aftercooler system that optimises the air induction, lending to greater efficiency and lower fuel consumption.

Variable model

The Case 570T is being released into the UAE market alongside the slightly more powerful Case 570ST, which differs from its sibling by offering 97 HP rather than 86 HP, as well as an increase in the boom length — and therefore the digging depth — from 5.57m to 5.84m.

The key difference, however, is the higher power output, which is intended to meet the requirements of certain exacting tenders in the region. Barnard notes: “In Oman, Egypt and Africa, in a lot of tendering they’ll actually stipulate that they want 100 HP, and we can’t come in at 86 HP for a 100 HP requirement.”

In most other ways, the 570T itself already comes equipped with most of the features present in the 580T and 580ST.

Barnard highlights: “The customers are so used to the 580T now that whatever we had on the 580T, we’ve put onto the 570T. There’s now very little differentiating between the 580T and the 570T — though our elite customers that are brand conscious will still be sticking to the 580T and 580ST. Overall, the 580T comes out with a bigger engine (it’s a 4.5l engine); the digging depth is almost the same; and the cab is smaller on the 580T — it’s got one seat inside there. The 570T has a larger cab, and you can seat four people in there.”

The large cab in particular is a key feature for some customers in the Middle East and Africa, where it is common for work crews to travel to the job site in a construction machine.

The Case 570T also has the four-in-one bucket — for digging, loading and unloading, flattening and levelling applications — and which Barnard says is now standard in the region, as well as a self-levelling mechanism.

The 570T model sticks with Case’s S-shaped boom, which structurally takes away a lot of the stress, and in-line cylinders, which are the cheaper option and more robust than the alternatives. Case can theoretically provide the 570T with its DNA-boom and overlapping cylinders — which would reduce the height of the machine when stowed or loaded on a flatbed trailer. However, as this would push up the costs, and since pricing is key in terms of the positioning of the 570T, it is not standard.

Another variant is for a Case 570T equipped with four-wheel steering, and, as a result, the ability to crab — or manoeuvre — sideways.

The machine, meanwhile, uses a Power Shuttle transmission, which provides four speeds forward and reverse, and delivers up to 402 Nm of torque at just 1,300 RPM.

The machine’s front axle is also designed to handle heavy-duty applications with cylinders mounted in a protected area, and an oscillation of up to 13°, to facilitate stability on rough terrains even at tight steering angles.

The Case 570T is also being delivered with an extended dipper hoe as standard, and the manufacturer has added a seventh hydraulic line on the machine — rather than the usual six lines — allowing operators to equip attachments like breakers, augers and even brooms in the bucket position with ease.

Superior service

While Case may have preferred Al Shirawi Enterprises to roll out of the 570T in the UAE earlier, the principle that guided the dealer with regards to the 570T is one that Case appreciates: not second-guessing on quality.

In terms of servicing, for example, Barnard notes: “In the UAE, Al Shirawi is excellent — they have a massive facility over here, and we haven’t had a failure so far on engines. I know we had a couple of issues with the skidsteers, but we flew guys in from the States, and they came in and sorted it out.”

With regards to the Case 570T itself, Al Shirawi’s concern was promptly resolved after that were invited to visit the factory facility for themselves, as Barnard explains: “We went to the factory and showed them the facility, and when they saw how we manufacture there, they said: ‘no problem’.”

From the manufacturer’s side, CNH Industrial launched a new 33.5-hectare parts facility for Case Construction Equipment in Dubai during its first Eagle Days training and customer event in the Gulf. 

The facility will act as a regional hub for the EMEA region, and will speed up delivery times, thereby reducing downtime and helping customers raise their productivity. Operating 24/7, once up to speed it is expected to handle 7.8 million part orders each year.

In terms of the Case 570T, its FPT engine is interoperable with parts from a range of other FPT Industrial engines. Barnard notes: “Like our excavators run on Isuzu engines, if a customer has a problem and wants to go and buy his parts for his engine from Isuzu, he can go into the Isuzu dealer and order his parts.”

Also accompanying the expansion was an increase in the size of Case’s offices and local team. Barnard notes: “Our office has actually doubled in size, and concentrated on aftersales service and supporting the customers. We’ve got a service manager in place, and an area service manager who reports directly to the UK — so all technical issues and all service issues are no getting handled quickly.”

He adds: “I’m an earthmoving product specialist, so that entails going to customers, seeing what their needs are, and developing a solution. So if a customer is opening a quarry, and they need to move 120,000 tonnes of dirt a day, I would come and suggest what machine to use, where to place it, and how to get it up and running — so it’s the solution behind it.”

This shift from product specific marketing to solution-based marketing is one of the key developments in the industry highlighted by CNH Industrial at Bauma 2016.

Barnard continued: “There was that shift and the market has responded quite well, and the response back from the customer is that they have been looking for that.”

As for the Case 570T, now that it has been not only rigorously tested by Case, but used in the region for two years and finally approved by Al Shirawi Enterprises, customers in the UAE know they are getting the real deal.

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