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JCB has launched its first ever full electric mini excavator, the 19C-1E - a powerful compact model with zero exhaust emissions and one that is considerably quieter than a standard machine.

Utilising leading-edge automotive battery technology, the 19C-1E will deliver all of the performance of a conventional diesel-powered 1.9-tonne mini excavator with a reduction of both internal and external noise levels.

Designed to meet a growing need for environmentally friendly construction equipment, the new 19C-1E features:

  • Three or four lithium-ion battery packs providing a 15-20kWh storage capacity
  • Load-sensing hydraulic system delivering powerful digging performance
  • Sophisticated battery management system ensuring full-shift availability
  • Convenient on-board charger with 110V input for 12-hour recharging capability
  • The option for 230V charging when required, with 8-hour recharging time
  • Fast charge option allowing a full charge in under 2 hours


Zero emission operation at point of use, with no tethers or unsafe trailing cables, will allow contractors to work inside buildings and in emissions-sensitive inner-city environments. It will also permit rail contractors to operate in tunnels and underground, without having to install costly exhaust extraction equipment. Contractors will also be able to work after normal hours in urban streets, without disturbing residents, as well as operating in other noise sensitive environments including near hospitals and schools.

The JCB 19C-1E can be powered by three or four lithium-ion batteries, to provide 15kWh or an optional 20kWh of energy storage. This is enough for a full working shift for the majority of mini excavator customers. The machine is initially equipped with both 110V and 230V charging, while a fast charge option will be available. The 230V 16A supply requires an eight-hour charge time from empty, while the 110V supply would require a 12-hour charge time. The batteries have been designed to last the operating life of the machine.

Using a 48V electrical system, a highly efficient electric motor delivers instant torque, to power the machine’s proven Bosch Rexroth load-sensing hydraulic system. This delivers the same sector-leading digging performance as the standard 19C-1. The hydraulic system also delivers a

32 litre/min twin flow auxiliary circuit and the mini comes with an integrated hand-held hydraulic tool circuit option, for added versatility.

The high efficiency of this advanced electric-hydraulic combination means only a small hydraulic cooler with a small thermostatic electric fan and no engine radiator - contributing to longer battery life and the lower noise level. With no daily checks of coolant and engine oil levels required, the machine can commence work quicker than its diesel counterpart.

The machine has three digging modes, controlled by a rotary dial. In the ‘low’ setting the electric motor runs at 1,200rpm, in ‘general’ it operates at 1,600rpm and in ‘high’ mode the motor spins at 1,800rpm. There is an additional Auto Kick Up mode for tracking, where the motor operates at 2,300rpm for rapid movement of the machine between digging sites. The 19C-1E is equipped with the same adjustable undercarriage and choice of digging equipment as the diesel model, providing a maximum digging depth of 2,576mm with the longer 1,100mm dipper arm.

Initially, the mini excavator will be available with a ROPS/TOPS and FOGS certified canopy. As the electric excavator is based on the premium specification 19C-1, the excavator comes with proportional rocker switches for auxiliary functions and boom offset swing. The premium model also has a membrane switch pad to the right of the operator for all additional controls, while the fuel gauge has been replaced by an easy to read charge level readout.