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New Kubota KX030-4 Compact Excavator

Tags :  kubota  | 

Neil from Messick here today and I'm sick, but nothing is going to stop me from walking you around a new excavator. Join me here today while we walk around Kubota's new KX030 and show you some of its new features
Over the last several years, Kubota has been making iterative changes to their excavator series that's denoted here at a couple of different places in the model number, most notably the dash and the number down here on the end. This is a -4 series machine. It replaces the very old and very aged KX71-3. You're going to notice that there's some d-5 excavators in Kubotas series already, even though this -4 is just coming out. That's reserved for the larger machines that have a different electronics and control package up inside the cab. The smaller excavators are all still in their -4 iteration right now. Now these model numbers always tell us things. Kubota's model numbers are the weight of the machine in metric tons. If we take 3.0 when we multiply by 2.2, we're quickly going to learn this is a machine that's going to come in in the 6,200 to 6,500 pound range for the machine before you've put on things like buckets, couplers, and thumbs.
That makes it a very comfortable machine to fit onto a 10,000-pound trailer. The next bigger model in this, the KX033, is a much more popular machine, but it's also a significantly heavier machine than what the model number sometimes leads you to believe. If you're wanting to be on a 10,000-pound trailer with all of your buckets, coupler's, thumbs and everything on it, this is a machine that gives you a little bit more margin of error than that 033 does. In terms of digging capacity, this is going to come in just under 10 feet. It's a fairly good size machine. The next step up going in that 033 comes in just under 11. As these machines have grown up, the standard features have come along with them.
When you look at the machine here, you're going to find things like standard guards on the bottom here to protect the hydraulic cylinders, work lights with guards around them, and hydraulic diverter down here. If you want to switch this from operating your regular thumb and bucket set up to say running a hammer, you can leave your thumb on, put a wrench on here and flip this over to your second circuit and then go ahead and put a hammer onto the end without having to remove your thumb and the hydraulics or have dangling hoses out here on the end. It's a very tidy little system to be able to run that attachment. You don't get a machine in this class of two full-wet service ports. This diverter is usually the only option in a small machine like this. There's a coupler set up down here on the end is Kubota's K7870.
Now that number may not mean anything to you, but to me, it's super important. The buckets and the couplers and thumbs that are used on this machine are some of Kubota's most popular. If you are getting into the orange excavator ecosystem, this machine is compatible with the biggest range of Kubota's buckets. If you're anywhere in this 6,000 to almost 11,000-pound machine, you are in this same bucket system that gives you some really good compatibility with being able to trade buckets between other excavators. Many of our larger Kubota excavators are offered with an option for either a straight blade or an angle blade. In this series, though only the straight blade is offered. You have to get to that larger machine before you've got enough weight attractive power to really be able to cut like you would with an angle blade. These are only going to come through is straight.
This cab though, can be an option. About $5,000 is going to add a cab onto this machine. Now importantly, currently it is shipping configuration. This cab does not have air conditioning. Now we have seen a teaser of a machine floating around at the dealer meeting where we flipped the back of it open and noticed an air conditioning compressor on the inside. Clearly, they're working on it. That machine is out there floating around somewhere, but today's KX030, it's cab is not going to have air. It is a heat-only cab. Flipping up all the access panels on the machine, there's a lot of things here that I like. Working from the front and coming around to the back, you've got wildly easy access to your diesel fuel fill, your battery and your hydraulic oil fill. Coming around to the back corner is your cooling pack with swing-out radiators, and then the engine is tucked in around the rear here.
Now in a small machine like this, these engines are shoehorned into the back of the machine a little bit, but standing here at the back you can see they do a really good job of pulling all of your service points to the back of the machine. Things like air cleaners, radiator fills, fuel filters, are all back here at the back. Even really going a step further than that, you could look at something like the alternator for example, and see that even that is located at the back of the machine. In terms of serviceability, there's a lot that can be done to this machine without having to get in and start disassembling it in order to get into its guts. At Messick's, we run a rental fleet and so we're starting to pick up a little bit now on some of the features on these machines and why they matter in a new way.
They've switched from a glossy paint on the counterweights and the metal parts of the machine over to this textured finish. I find that you see the scuffs and scrapes on the machines a lot less by having this texture in here rather than the gloss. You're also going to notice a real excess of tie-down points now on a lot of the newer equipment. This one has tie-downs for your chains at all four corners of the house. There's two down here on the track frame. Easy places to get chains over top of the boom. That's going to make a big difference in your ease on and off of a trailer and it is going to be easier to comply with the varying state regulations when it comes to multiple tie-down points. I wish I had the prior model KX71 sitting here to be able to show you all the differences between these machines and validate what's in my head versus what I see.
I am pretty confident that the old machine, when you wanted to operate your auxiliary circuits out here on the boom had no flow control, where if you had a thumb on the end and wanted it to move nice and slow, the only way to accomplish that was with restrictor valves and stuff in the hydraulic lines. This one though, when I go through and turn my auxiliaries on and off has presets and adjustability in it. It has proportional control over top of this hydraulic circuit. That allows me to have it wide open like this. Now my machine's an idle, and have it move fairly quickly, or to be able to go to a different setting just by pushing a button and have my thumb move a lot slower. That can be useful when depending on the attachments that you have out there on the boom. If they operate, say better with full flow, but then your thumb needs low flow, it's very easy to toggle between these presets with a simple button down here on the display.
Kubota does not call that out as an improvement in the marketing literature, but I'm fairly certain that it is. Another improvement on this machine is auto downshift track motors. Now, like most excavators, this machine is going to have a two-speed drive system. As you go forward and back, you have a green button here on top of your blade stick that allows you to go into a high or a low gear as you're driving around. One nice feature is now that it will automatically shift down from high to low when it starts to encounter some resistance. You can effectively always leave this machine in high and if you go to push a pile of dirt or you need some extra torque to make a hard turn, the machine will automatically shift down into low and then give you the speed right back again when you can have it.
It removes a lot of need to have your hand over here pushing this green button for frequently as you're going through different tasks. Another major improvement in this model over the prior one is the amount of space that's here in the operator's area. This opening right here to climb up into the machine and also the amount of area down here on the floor is significantly bigger than what the prior model was, is definitely a lot more spacious. I'm almost six feet tall and I can sit up here and almost stretch my legs out when I'm getting up here to where the boom pedals are. There's plenty of room in this machine even though it is a small excavator. The rest of the controls on here are modernized from the older model. You're going to find a lot of similar stuff on mechanical throttle, a mechanical blade control, not a lot of electronic controls and sticks up here that make it feel like a bells and whistles machine, but the ergonomics of it have definitely taken a step forward from the older model.
There is a small display up here on the right-hand side that's going to give you fuels and temperatures. Clicking through the couple of options here, give you time of day, operating hours, turn your hydraulics on and off, and give you some of those basic functions out of a basic monitor. Some of these things frankly, are not the easiest to use, because there is only a little LCD display down here. By sitting here and punching the buttons with very little knowledge myself, I'm easily to able to go through and see the different functions. It's always educational to set machines side by side and notice their differences. One thing that jumped out at me here is the difference in the routing of the lines on the older KX033 versus the new KX030. Remember, these are both the same generation machine, conceivably. What we have here is very typical of most excavators. A lot of the lines, both the hard lines and the hoses are routed down the top of the boom with some actually protruding over the sides of the boom maybe just a little bit. Contrast that though to the KX030, this has almost nothing coming down the sides or even the top of the boom. The hoses are all routed up the inside of the boom through some channels.
Now, this could have some pros and cons here. Depending on the use of your machine, this is potentially a little bit more problematic to service. If you get a leak in one of those hoses, fishing it through the boom is going to be a little bit of a chore, but hopefully, you don't ever have to do that, because they're all contained and protected inside of the boom, especially over your first years of service where you're not worried about hoses dry rotting.
You're not going to drag this boom through a trench and catch a root that rips a hose off the side, because they're all conveniently routed inside of the boom. It makes this new machine look very, very tidy compared to what's very typical in the industry.
That's a little bit on Kubota's New KX030 excavator. Much of what I've talked about here today seems pretty pedestrian to us, because it is features and changes that we've already seen in Kubota's other excavators over the years.
This model was a bit of a laggard. It was long overdue for being updated, but now that it has it definitely is going to be a much bigger seller for us than what the old model was for sure. I think this one lasted about three days before it's headed out to a new owner here, which is why I'm shooting this video today, even though I'm sick.
If you're shopping for a piece of equipment and we can help, or if you've got parts of service needs for a machine you've already got, give us a call at Messick. We're available at 800-222-3373 or online at

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