Deere’s new 944K hybrid wheel loader
By Andrew Macklin
April 21, 2016 – John Deere has released its 944K Hybrid Wheel Loader, featuring a 536 horsepower, PowerTech EPA Interim Tier 4 engine (IT4).
The production-class wheel loader’s brushless AC generators and motors, water-cooled brake resistors and solid-state power electronics deliver long-term performance to quarry and large-load applications.
The 944K’s hybrid-electric drive recaptures energy while slowing the loader when the operator lets off the accelerator, lessening the load on the engine and further reducing fuel consumption. During operation, the engine can run in a limited speed range of 1,200 – 1,800 rpm for maximum fuel efficiency in Normal Mode or can run at constant speed so boom and bucket functions are powerful, responsive and quick in Performance Mode.
Offering strong pushing power and quick ramp-climbing ability, the 944K hybrid wheel loader helps operators maintain stockpiles and heap hoppers in quarry operations and other production facilities through its bucket width of 12 feet and breakout force of 103,388 pounds. No transmission shifting or clutches to engage enable smooth reversals and less spillage.
The 944K Hybrid Wheel Loader offers standard traction control that automatically limits torque to any wheel when slippage occurs, increasing machine traction in poor underfoot conditions. With enhanced rimpull control, the loader prevents tire spin and slicing. The 944K also offers coast control to reduce service-brake wear and features such functions as dynamic braking in a hydrostatic transmission, slowing the loader and helping reduce service-brake component wear.
Inside the cab, the loader is quieter than other machines on the market. At only 108 decibels, noise is much less noticeable to bystanders, and cab noise is only 72 decibels for the operator. With the largest loader cab offered by Deere, the 944K offers a commanding view to the bucket, tires and ground hazards through floor-to-ceiling front glass. The machine’s joystick steering delivers smooth, low-effort control for fatigue-beating comfort.