Caterpillar has introduced its new Next Generation 36t size class excavators — the 336 and 336 GC — which are designed to increase operating efficiency, lower fuel and maintenance costs, and improve operator comfort compared to previous models.
According to Cat, the new excavators offer unique combinations of features designed to match contractors’ productivity and cost targets. The new 336 features standard integrated Cat Connect Technology and the most power and lift capacity of the two models for maximum productivity at the lowest cost. The new 336 GC, meanwhile. combines the right balance of productivity features with reduced fuel consumption and maintenance costs for high reliability and low-cost-per-hour performance.
The new 336 has the industry’s highest level of standard factory-equipped technology to boost productivity, says the manufacturer. Integrated Cat Connect Technology increases operating efficiency by up to 45% over traditional grading operations. The standard Cat Grade with 2D system provides guidance for depth, slope, and horizontal distance to grade through the standard touchscreen monitor, making operators more accurate. The system is readily upgradable to Cat Grade with Advanced 2D or Cat Grade with 3D.
Among its several features and smart work aides for operators, the standard Grade Assist automates boom, stick, and bucket movements so operators can stay on grade with single-lever digging. Cat Payload delivers precise load targets and increased loading efficiency with on-the-go weighing and real-time payload estimates without swinging to prevent truck over/underloading. The E-fence feature prevents the excavator from moving outside operator-defined set points—particularly useful when working beneath structures or near traffic.
By design, Cat Next Generation excavators produce more work per unit of fuel than the models they are replacing, says Caterpillar — up to 15% more fuel efficiency for the 336. New Smart mode operation automatically matches engine and hydraulic power to digging conditions, optimising both fuel consumption and performance. Engine speed is automatically lowered when there is no hydraulic demand to further reduce fuel usage. The cooling system features a new fan that runs on demand to keep the excavator working at the correct operating temperature for maximum efficiency.
With a new electrohydraulic system built for responsiveness and efficiency, the Cat 336 and 336 GC feature a new main control valve that eliminates the need for pilot lines, reduces pressure losses, and lowers fuel consumption. Fewer hydraulic lines on the excavators result in less oil required, lowering long-term operating costs.
The manufacturer adds that offering extended and more synchronised maintenance intervals, the new Cat excavators do more work at a lower cost and reduce maintenance costs by up to 15% over the previous series.
The new air filter with integrated pre-cleaner and primary and secondary filters has double the dust holding capacity of the previous design. The new hydraulic return filter has a 3,000-hour service life — a 50% increase over previous filters. The fuel system filters are synchronised for service at 1,000 hours — a 100% increase over the previous filters.
The fuel system water and sediment drains and hydraulic system oil level are positioned close together at ground level, making routine daily maintenance faster, easier, and safer.
The new Next Gen 36t scoopers are also more refined and improved where operator comforts are concerned. With a choice of Comfort or Deluxe cab packages, all Next Generation Cat excavator cabs come equipped with standard features like keyless push-button start, a large standard 8-inch touchscreen monitor with jog dial keys for control, and sound-suppressed rollover protective structures (ROPS) to offer the next level of operator comfort and safety.
A tilt-up console for the Deluxe cab design affords easy cab entry and exit. New advanced viscous mounts reduce cab vibration by up to 50% over previous models and a Bluetooth integrated radio with USB ports for connecting and charging phones brings creature comforts from the home to the operator’s office, as does and automatic climate control system that maintains internal cab temperature settings, regardless of external ambient temperatures.