Case Construction Equipment has earned a 2020 Good Design Award from the Chicago Athenaeum Museum of Architecture and Design and Metropolitan Arts Press for Project Zeus: the CASE 580 EV (electric vehicle) backhoe loader — the world’s first electric backhoe. The award recognises “the most innovative and cutting-edge industrial, product, and graphic designs produced around the world.”
This is the third Case design to win in four years. Case G Series wheel loaders were honoured in 2017, and the methane-powered concept wheel loader, Project Tetra, won in 2019.
The award recognises the matching of Case brand heritage via a product line that originated in 1957 with sustainability anchored in both clean operation (no emissions/elimination of diesel fuel) and the sharp and clean design of the machine itself. Project Zeus was also noted for its innovative lighting/backlighting design elements; its rugged and clean lines and contouring; a specialised metallic “Power Tan” colour scheme; and a modern and intuitive user experience that combines traditional backhoe operation with specialisation related to electrification.
“The theme is born from combining the essence of Case heritage and the mission of sustainability into a clean and simple design,” says David Wilkie, head of the CNH Industrial Design Centre. “It is extremely practical and built around function while delivering distinctive design elements that communicate strength and progress. From the lighting to the color and the way that the operator interacts with the machine. “Project Zeus represents the sustainability and forward-thinking of our industry.”
“The electrification of construction equipment, and the focus on sustainable power sources and machine ownership/operation, are all driving forces for public and private fleet owners around the world,” says Leandro Lecheta, head of construction — North America, CNH Industrial. “The CASE 580 EV accomplishes this through the elimination of emissions, diesel and other fluids and components, while also delivering a machine design anchored in trusted CASE backhoe performance — and our CNH Industrial Design Centre tied it all together with a clean, modern aesthetic that stopped people in their tracks when we introduced the machine at ConExpo 2020.”
From an operational perspective: the power and performance of the CASE 580 EV is equivalent to diesel-powered backhoes in the CASE product line and provides considerably lower daily operating costs while also producing zero emissions — a motivating factor for utility and government contractors incentivised to work with equipment that leverages alternative fuels and lowers emissions. City governments and municipalities will also benefit from the elimination of emissions for working in urban environments and close to other buildings/people, as well as the reduced noise generated by the equipment. The machine has since gone on to win numerous industry awards and accolades as one of the best and most important construction equipment introductions of 2020.