Speed, power and efficiency make this machine truly one of a kind.
Lee Watt is a highly experienced tradesman, having been in the business for over three decades. He’s seen technology progress and has used a range of machines to help his work over this time, but never has he come across a mini loader like the MultiOne from Yuchai Australia.
Catering around the greater Brisbane area, Lee’s company Watbuilt started in building construction and maintenance and then began focusing more on landscaping as time went on. Working mainly on large acreages, gardens, driveways and irrigation systems, he soon found himself desperately needing a specialised machine.
And that’s when Yuchai Australia came to the rescue with their revolutionary articulated mini wheel loader, the MultiOne.
“I’ve been a builder for about 32 years,” Lee recounts. “I’ve had five different skid steer loaders over that time. With all the ground work I do and what have you, they were really ripping the ground up, and there was nothing I could do to stop it. That’s when I met Adrian and I bought a MultiOne 8.4S, which is the smaller machine, and it’s unbelievably good. That was about nine months ago.”
The MultiOne is essentially a hybrid mini loader built with a swivelling, articulated frame, meaning that the front and rear halves of the machine are connected by a juncture. It’s lighter than its regular counterparts and runs permanently in fourwheel drive mode, meaning it doesn’t ‘skid’ along the ground as it effortlessly turns. It grips incredibly well across sloppy, muddy terrain with great traction and floatation control, and then it’s super gentle on delicate surfaces, leaving no track marks or pivot holes.
“We’re working on a three-and-a-half metre driveway,” Lee continues, “and we have to drop in stone, bark, plants and soil, and I can do a three-point turn on the driveway in the 8.4S and not leave a mark on the ground. I wouldn’t have been able to even use my old skid steer because you can’t turn on a brand new sealed driveway, the tyres just ruin it, and then around the edges it would’ve ripped up the grass. You end up spending hours cleaning up all the mess you left behind. That’s a massive advantage of the MultiOne; the fact that you can turn around, you can mow, you can top dress, you can do anything and not leave a mark on the ground.”
Because they are lighter they are easier to transport, but then you’d think they wouldn’t be as powerful. On the contrary, the MultiOne’s lift capacity to weight ratio is second to none with powerful engines and direct drive motors. Lee gave an enlightening comparison. “The 8.4S is a one-and-a-half ton machine and it replaced my older two and-a-half ton skid steer. It almost lifts the same, that’s how good it is. And it’s a two speed machine so it’s twice as fast. ”
Lee was so impressed he’s already upgraded to the 10.8 model. “It’s even better,” he gloats, “72hp, outlift anything, goes 40km/h, that’s really fast. I’m currently working on 15 acres, so you can load up a big bucket of dirt and just shoot across 500 metres in no time. I used to have to fill up the truck and drive that across. It’s just so much more efficient.”
Saving on time, fuel and tyres, the MultiOne is also equipped with a telescopic boom that enables the operator to reach further and higher than a standard skid steer. “The extended reach on the bucket is another really handy thing,” says Lee. “I can fill the bucket up with bark and I can extend that and reach two-and-a-half metres beyond the tyre mark. I can reach in the garden beds without climbing over and ruining things, or even save my staff from having to spread it manually. That’s a massive benefit.”
Yuchai Australia’s support, service and parts department is top shelf too. “If you ever want anything you just have to ask them,” Lee confirms of the distributor.
“I got a filter kit from them, for example, which was only $120 dollars or something, while if you went with another brand the filter kits are over $500.” Easy to operate and with more visibility from the cabin for greater safety, the MultiOne not only comes in a range of models and sizes, it also boasts a ridiculous number of attachments – over 170 in total. It really is the all-in-one, versatile machine. “For landscaping this machine leaves anything for dead, both price and performance-wise,” concludes Lee. “I wouldn’t be surprised if you start seeing these things everywhere.”