While original equipment makers such as Sandvik and Epiroc have been pushing ahead with their battery electric offerings and have several commercial variants available, Caterpillar has been a little slower to market.
That should change with the R1700 XE LHD.
The 15t payload machine will boast a 24t lift and tilt breakout and an 18kph top speed.
No details have been released on what sort of range users can expect from the battery electric loader.
Caterpillar is going for a fast-charging option, saying the machine's batteries can be charged in less than 30 minutes using a single Caterpillar MEC500 Mobile Equipment Charger or in less than 20 minutes using two.
The R1700 XE will offer remote control operation capability and has an Autodig function designed to optimise loading, and traction control to extend tyre life.
The MEC500 Mobile Equipment Charger is designed to charge quickly and safely where it is needed. The 1600kg unit can be moved to where it is needed via towing, a fork truck or even the R1700 XE itself. It can deliver a range of 300 volts to 1000V and up to 700 amps. Its adjustable output voltage and current can trickle charge the battery.
Caterpillar's thinking is this mobile charging approach removes the need for regular battery handling and swapping while allowing for more efficient charging and production.
The charger is built to meet the ISO2867 rockfall protection standard and the IP66 rating for water and dust protection.
Key components are isolation mounted against vibration or seismic activity. It is sealed against humidity and has enclosed air conditioning.