Case Construction Equipment’s ‘Project Zeus’ or 580 EV (electric vehicle) backhoe loader has won the Good Design Award for 2020 from the Chicago Athenaeum Museum of Architecture and Design and Metropolitan Arts Press.
The prestigious award, now more than 70 years old, recognises the most innovative and cutting-edge industrial, product, and graphic designs produced around the world.
According to Case, the award recognised the “matching of the Case brand heritage via a product line that originated in 1957 with sustainability anchored in both clean operation (no emissions/elimination of diesel fuel) and the sharp and clean design of the machine itself”.
‘Project Zeus’ was also noted for its innovative lighting/backlighting design elements, its rugged and clean lines and contouring, a specialised metallic ‘Power Tan’ colour scheme, and a modern and intuitive user experience that combines traditional backhoe operation with specialisation related to electrification.
David Wilkie, head of the CNH Industrial Design Centre, said: “The theme is born from combining the essence of Case heritage and the mission of sustainability into a clean and simple design. It is extremely practical and built around function while delivering distinctive design elements that communicate strength and progress. From the lighting to the colour and the way that the operator interacts with the machine. ‘Project Zeus’ represents the sustainability and forward-thinking of our industry.”
Leandro Lecheta, head of construction, North America, CNH Industrial, added: “The electrification of construction equipment, and the focus on sustainable power sources and machine ownership/operation, are all driving forces for public and private fleet owners around the world. The Case 580 EV accomplishes this through the elimination of emissions, diesel and other fluids and components, while also delivering a machine design anchored in trusted Case backhoe performance — and our CNH Industrial Design Centre tied it all together with a clean, modern aesthetic that stopped people in their tracks when we introduced the machine at CONEXPO 2020.”
From an operational perspective, Case says the power and performance of the 580 EV is equivalent to diesel-powered backhoes in the Case product line and provides considerably lower daily operating costs while also producing zero emissions — a motivating factor for utility and government contractors incentivised to work with equipment that leverages alternative fuels and lowers emissions.
City governments and municipalities will also benefit from the elimination of emissions for working in urban environments and close to other buildings/people, as well as the reduced noise generated by the equipment, added Case.
The 580 EV, the world’s first electric backhoe loader, has also won other industry awards and accolades as one of the best and most important construction equipment introductions of 2020, added Case. It is also the third Case design to win a Good Design Award in four years, with the others being the Case G Series wheel loaders in 2017 and the methane-powered concept wheel loader, Project Tetra in 2019.