Snorkel launches its first lithium-powered rough-terrain boom lift

Snorkel has unveiled the ninth model in its lithium-ion battery powered family of rough-terrain mobile elevating work platforms (MEWPs) and telehandlers.

The new Snorkel A46JRTE recently made its global debut at the Vertikal Days exhibition in the UK, becoming the company’s first lithium powered boom lift. It joins eight other lithium-powered Snorkel models which have been introduced since late 2019, including the SL26RTE and SL30RTE electric Speed Levels; the S2255RTE, S2755RTE, S2770RTE, S3370RTE and S3970RTE electric rough-terrain scissor lifts; and the SR5719E/SR626E electric compact rough-terrain telehandler.

Utilising the same lithium-ion battery pack solution as the other MEWPs in the family, the A46JRTE delivers a true zero-emission rough-terrain solution, without compromising on the reliability and four-wheel drive capabilities of the diesel equivalent, explained Snorkel. The model comes as standard with three 5.75-kWh lithium-ion battery packs, which satisfies many applications, including heavy-use.

The automotive-quality lithium-ion battery packs are produced in the North East of England, and are individually equipped with the latest battery management systems (BMS). According to Snorkel, the battery packs require zero maintenance and have been tested in climatic chambers between -25°C and +60°C, making them suitable for use in most environments.

Depending on usage, Snorkel said its lithium-powered MEWPs are delivering extended duty cycles per charge, when compared to similar models. Based on typical use in rough-terrain under test conditions, a single charge can last for more than one week, and in light use on elevation jobs with minimal driving, this increases to more than two weeks on a single charge.

Featuring a powerful AC electric motor, which creates efficiencies in the hydraulic drive system, the A46JRTE benefits from higher torque, which results in increased traction and improved rough-terrain performance. Snorkel added that the electric motor also delivers 62% less jobsite noise and with no engine fan, dust generation is reduced for safer and cleaner operation in low emission zones and green cities.

The company further highlighted that with minimal battery and electrical system maintenance required, servicing costs are reduced by up to 93% when compared to an engine, while also eliminating the costs and risks of waste oil and filter disposal. Plus, less servicing reduces the load on service engineers.

The original diesel-powered Snorkel A46JRT is a globally popular articulated boom lift, known for its long working life and exceptional working envelope. Capable of reaching a maximum working height of 16.3 m, the A46JRT has a working outreach of 7.35 m and benefits from a zero tailswing and 1.5 m jib boom for excellent manoeuvrability in confined spaces.

The new lithium-powered four-wheel drive A46JRTE expands the A46 family to three models. Snorkel continues to offer the diesel-powered four-wheel drive A46JRT model, as well as its two-wheel drive electric powered A46JE, which is suited to indoor and outdoor work on concrete slab and is popular in industrial applications.

“The launch of our first lithium-powered boom lift is an exciting next step in our development of zero-emission alternatives to diesel. The compact and mid-size aerial lift and telehandler segment is a sweet spot for electrification, and our lithium-battery technology is proving to be a zero-compromise solution in this product category, delivering zero emissions, reduced noise and equivalent or better performance than the diesel,” said Matthew Elvin, CEO of Xtreme Manufacturing and Snorkel.

At the same time, Snorkel also used the Vertikal Days as a launchpad for its new lithium-focused website. Designed to aide customers in the switch from diesel to lithium equipment, the site features a range of resources including diesel vs lithium cost calculators for both rental companies and contractors, as well as frequently asked questions, photos, videos and region-specific information on market drivers and adoption. Snorkel is also offering direct training for its rental customers, to help them educate their customers on the benefits of this new technology.

All nine models in the Snorkel lithium-electric family are now in full production and available to order globally.