Mini landmark for JCB
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JCB has marked the production of its 100,000th mini excavator.

JCB has made 100,000th mini excavators over the past 27 years
Above: JCB has made 100,000th mini excavators over the past 27 years

JCB’s first mini excavator, a 1.4-tonne 801 model, rolled off the production line at Rugely in 1989 – just over 450 machines were made that year. By 1992 there were four models in the range and annual production rates had risen to 1,000 units.

The 100,000th compact excavator, a 10-tonne 100C-1, was finished on 6th January 2016. It is one of 22 models in today’s range which spans one to 10 tonnes. Since 1999, all have been manufactured at the JCB Compact Products factory in Cheadle, Staffordshire.

The global mini excavator sector is worth an estimated £4bn a year, with more than 20 major manufacturers collectively selling almost 200,000 units a year. It is the biggest single segment of the annual 700,000-unit construction equipment market.

JCB chief executive Graeme Macdonald said: “From being a challenger in the market 25 years ago, JCB is now firmly established as an industry leader, setting trends for design innovation and manufacturing excellence.

“To have produced 100,000 compact excavators really is something for the whole JCB team to celebrate and with more additions to the range due this year we can look forward to more growth in this important sector of the market.”

New JCB mini excavators models introduced in the last two years include the 65R-1, 67C-1, 85Z-1, 86C-1, 90Z-1 and 100C-1 models which compete in the six, eight, nine and 10 tonne weight categories respectively.

JCB Compact Products employs more than 350 at its site in Leek Road, Cheadle, and has won two Queen’s Awards for International Trade for increases in exports in 1994 and 2007.