Hitachi Construction Machinery



How will excavators look in 50 years?

April 18, 2023

Hitachi Construction Machinery (Europe) NV has been questioning how our machines might look in 50 years’ time – and we’ve been discussing this with our people. 

Has the development of excavator machines reached its limit?

Some of our interviewees expressed the opinion that construction machinery will look much the same in 2072. Mark Watson has worked for Hitachi Construction Machinery (UK) for 40 years and when considering the evolution of excavators, he says: “Since the 80s, there’s not been much of a change in the structure of an excavator, and I don’t see how it can be changed in the future.”

His colleague, Hayden Murrall, agrees that in 50 years “excavators will look similar to what they do now”.

When considering that an excavator will remain similar in the future, this opinion is also shared by Knut Gaarde from our Norwegian dealer, Nasta. He comments that excavators will likely “be looking more or less the same as they do now, because they definitely need a bucket to move materials”.

Sustainability and green technology

Others, however, believe excavators will develop further – in line with advances in technology and an increased demand for more environmentally friendly machinery. Joep van den Maagdenberg from HCME suggests a change in energy source is possible by saying that excavators may not use fuel as we know it, but instead a machine may have “some kind of windmill behind it”.

Another technological advancement mentioned in our interviews was that of remotely controlled excavators. Danny van Hasselt, from our Belgian dealer Luyckx, predicts that, “In 50 years, I do think we will be able to read and operate the machine from a distance.”

And French contractor Jean-Michel Besnier says: “Ease of use of machines will develop in the years to come,” while “advances in technology could also help to protect the environment.”

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