The impressive new model was delivered by Hitachi Construction Machinery (UK) to one of the Birmingham-based company’s major housebuilding projects near Wallingford at the end of June.
MV Kelly has bought more than 3,000 Hitachi excavators from the UK’s Hitachi dealer, which is a subsidiary of Hitachi Construction Machinery Co., Ltd. The company currently has 543 Zaxis machines – ranging from the ZX33U-6 mini to the ZX300-6 medium excavator – working across 227 sites in central England.
Doug Curran is MV Kelly’s Asset and Fleet Director, who has responsibility for the purchase and disposal of the group’s machines, and says: “The Hitachi excavators are extremely reliable, working every day over the 2.5 to 3 years that we own them. In addition, we are very well looked after by the great people at Hitachi and our partnership is second to none. And finally, the residual value for Zaxis machines is excellent.
“The Hitachi ZX130-6 is the perfect tool for the job that we do and so when Hitachi offered us the opportunity to buy the first ZX130-7, we were really pleased to add it to our fleet. The machine has been assigned to our experienced operator John Ritchie, who is very happy with the comfort in the cab, and the speed and performance of this latest model.”
Ideal working environment
John has been a machine operator for over 30 years, the last five of which he has been working with MV Kelly. During that time he has operated the ZX130-5 and ZX130-6, and so is well qualified to test the new ZX130-7 to its full potential.
He uses the machine for digging foundations, drainage, grading and all other works to get each house plot up to floor level, and says: “Hitachi has always made excellent excavators. They are fast, smooth and reliable – and the ZX130-7 is no exception.”
Hitachi has redesigned the Zaxis-7 cab with the aim of creating the perfect workspace, and John says: “The working environment is ideal with all the room I need to do my job. The quality of the cab is first-class, with less vibration and noise than the previous generation, and more storage for my phone, lunch bag and drinks.
“I also feel the difference in comfort with the adjustable arm rests, and the combined movement of the seat and console is excellent. The controls and switches are easily accessible, and the levers are comfortable with the added convenience of the buttons for simple operations.
“The large 8” screen is clear and easy to view, and the oil and water can be checked on the monitor rather than having to climb on top of machine. All of this makes my working day more effortless and enjoyable.”
John is also impressed with the machine’s performance: “Like all Hitachi machines, the latest hydraulic system feels smooth and precise. The new Stage V engine doesn’t require AdBlue – and this saves me time, because I don’t have to refill the tank and there’s no longer any risk of contamination.”
Safety is the priority
In addition, John rates safety as his top priority and the ZX130-7 excels in this respect: “The emphasis placed on my safety as a driver helps me to work more confidently and productively. The camera system gives me peace of mind with an exceptional view of what’s happening around the machine. The monitor is in a better position and it’s closer to my line of vision while operating.
“My view is also better when it’s raining, as the windscreen wiper has an increased sweeping area and it now covers the lower front window. The longer refuelling hose saves time and is more convenient. And finally, the pilot shutoff lever is easy to reach and safer, as it won’t activate if you accidentally touch a lever.”
In summary, John says: “Overall, I really like the look of the machine – the decals on the side and rear really set it off! The biggest improvements between the ZX130-6 and ZX130-7 are the speed, power, cab comfort and all of the small details, such as the mute and wiper buttons on the joysticks. I have to say that this machine has been designed with the driver in mind.”