JCB is celebrating its production of a half-million backhoe loaders over a period that began in the early 1950s. It marked the occasion during a ceremony Dec. 10.
The manufacturer is the third-largest of its kind in the world. Its collection of more than 300 machines includes the backhoe loaders and other many other pieces of construction equipment along with telescopic handlers and the Fastrac tractor for the agricultural sector.
"When my father pioneered this machine all those years ago, we could never have imagined how successful it would be and how it would totally mechanize jobs that until then had been done by hand," JCB Chairman Sir Anthony Bamford says. "The backhoe is the world’s most versatile piece of construction machinery, and that is what ensures the product will continue to thrive."
JCB’s original backhoe, the Mark One, left the production line in 1953 in England. The company made 35 the next year and reached a milestone–50,000–after more than 20 years. The backhoes are sold in 120 countries.
One particularly noteworthy advance in the product line: the $3.86 million launch of the technologically advanced 3CX in 1980, the company says. Soon, JCB backhoe loaders will be made with the JCB Ecomax engine, designed to save operators up to 11% on fuel costs.