Bobcat introduces E85 excavators

The 8.5-tonne E85 is part of the fastest-growing size class of compact excavators in North America—a trend that is filtering through to NZ

As the largest machine in Bobcat Company’s expanded R-Series excavator line-up, the 8.5-tonne E85 is part of the fastest-growing size class of compact excavators in North America—a trend that is filtering through to New Zealand.

Coming with what Bobcat says is minimal tail swing, class-leading digging capacity and depth, with powerful hydraulics and fast cycle times, the new Bobcat® E85 has been designed to provide the power to push through the most demanding road, utility, and site preparation jobs.


The E85 has been redesigned with performance, uptime protection, and operator comfort in mind and features the same bold, distinct design and other cab upgrades as the E32 and E35 R-Series compact excavators introduced in 2017.

As part of the new R-Series model, the 49kW (66hp) E85 is now manufactured in Bismarck, North Dakota, sharing the same Bobcat turbo-charged diesel engine technology—that does not require a diesel particulate filter (DPF) or selective catalytic reduction (SCR)—as similar cab upgrades found on the current R-Series excavators. A new standard lift eye is included to help operators properly lift and place objects.

The 33cm (13 inches) of tail overhang allows the E85 to work in compact environments, including construction, landscaping, utilities, and agricultural. The excavator’s boom swing frame stays within the width of the machine’s tracks as it swings, making it easier to operate in confined job site conditions and next to buildings or other obstructions where larger equipment can’t fit.

E85 redesigned cab layout

Along with having one of the largest cab openings in the industry, Bobcat has redesigned the E85 cab for what they say is an unbeatable operator experience. Operators can now enjoy a roomy cab with a fully adjustable super deluxe seat
as standard.

Like other R-Series excavators, there is more floor space in the new E85 for the operator. Redesigned travel pedals conveniently fold away, further maximising floor space. The E85 seat and cab are also wider, providing plenty of elbow room.

Operators will also appreciate the optional automatic heating and air-conditioning systems for complete control over the cab climate. When it’s cold outside, there’s an option to switch on heating for seats for added operator comfort.

Bobcat E85 excavator cabs are rated as a Level 1 Falling Object Protective Structure (FOPS). The improved top window and narrower side pillars contribute to visibility. The company says operators can get a better view of the excavator’s workgroup and surrounding areas with class-leading visibility from the cab. Left and right mirrors enhancing operator’s visibility from inside the cab. A new sun visor over the top window shields operators’ eyes from the sun on bright days.

The new machine features a standard, easy-to-reach control pattern selector. This feature is conveniently located within the operator’s reach, allowing them to switch quickly from ISO controls to standard controls. With the repositioned second auxiliary hydraulic selector switch, operators can toggle between the optional second auxiliary and the boom offset without removing their hands from the left joystick.

The design maintains wide-open access to the engine area for daily maintenance checks. Operators have panoramic access to the engine and routine maintenance components for superior servicing and minimal machine downtime.

This R-Series excavator optional comfort and performance enhancements include:

  • hydraulic pin-grabber quick coupler accessory to quickly change attachments from the cab,
  • secondary auxiliary hydraulics to operate attachments with multiple capabilities,
  • deluxe instrumentation panel for fast access to critical machine information,
  • factory-installed steel tracks and segmented tracks,
  • travel alarm to meet localised job site requirements,
  • rear work light kit to brighten worksites at night,
  • counterweight to add lifting capabilities,
  • guard kits for the front and top 
  • windows to elevate the cab to a Level 2 FOPS rating,
  • keyless start to increase machine security, and radio kit.

A new tubular-frame reinforced cab door comes standard, making the E85 stronger and able to withstand rough job site conditions. The tubular frame holds a tighter seal, helping keep out dirt and dust for an enhanced operating experience.

Depth check ready


Bobcat says E85 excavator operators can dig faster using less effort and have greater precision with the depth check system—an optional accessory available for select Bobcat excavators. The E85 can be equipped with a depth check system, allowing operators to accurately measure depth and grade without exiting the excavator.

The depth check system has an accuracy of ± 0.5 inches. The system also helps minimise over-digging and under-digging and the costs and time associated with backfilling, compacting fill material, and manual labour to finalise depth or grade.

No additional display screens are required, allowing for more operator space in the excavator’s cab. The Bobcat depth check system utilises the machine’s deluxe panel to provide operator guidance and to facilitate operator inputs to the guidance system. 

For more information on Bobcat compact excavators, contact AB Equipment on 0800 303 090 or visit

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