Our company has had a presence in Europe for more than four decades and we’ve celebrated many important milestones during
that time – here are just a few highlights.
Hitachi Construction Machinery (Europe) NV (HCME) was established in 1972, as the European subsidiary of Hitachi Construction Machinery Co., Ltd. Our company first opened its doors in Oosterhout, The Netherlands, with just four employees led by Mr Okajima.
We opened a new parts warehouse in Oosterhout to provide full support to all machines sold in Europe, Africa and the Middle East. In the same year, we celebrated the sale of the 500th model.
We started producing mini excavators in the factory at Oosterhout. During the 1990s, the number of models expanded from two to five, production volumes trebled and HCME became one of the leading mini excavator manufacturers in Europe.
HCME achieved ISO certification. The mini excavator factory in Oosterhout obtained the ISO 9001 certificate, followed by the Product Support department a year later. By 2000, the whole company was ISO 9001 certified.
Our management, international sales, product support and marketing departments moved to Amsterdam, where a new facility for manufacturing medium excavators, and the Training and Demonstration Centre was under construction. Our mini excavator and special application equipment factories, European parts depot and our Dutch dealer have remained in Oosterhout.
The 10,000th Hitachi machine rolled off the production line in Amsterdam. The ZX210LC-3 was one of the first new-generation Zaxis-3 medium excavators, which became renowned for their reliability and productivity, as well as operator safety and comfort.
A new 53,000m2 European Distribution Centre opened in Oosterhout. Three times the size of the previous centre, it has the capacity to stock up to 90,000 individual parts lines, and supplies them to our customers throughout Europe, Middle East, Russia/CIS and Africa.
We celebrated the 40th anniversary of HCME’s operations in Europe with several events for employees and their families throughout the year. The new Zaxis-5 excavators and ZW-5 wheel loaders were also launched at Intermat.
Our new Remanufacturing Centre opened its doors in Oosterhout, giving our customers access to an increased supply of components from Europe as well as Japan. It specialises in the supply of main pumps, swing and travel motors, and cylinders for Zaxis excavators, and transmissions for wheel loaders.
The facilities at Oosterhout were restructured, and the Application Centre and Zaxis mini excavator factories merged into one operation. This involved combining the skills of our workforce for production, painting and assembly processes.
The first Hitachi hybrid excavator was launched in Europe. The ZH210LC-5 combines a hybrid system with the energy-efficient TRIAS hydraulic system, to significantly lower fuel consumption and CO2 by up to 31%.
Building on the success of the previous Zaxis-3 and -5 ranges, the -6 medium and large excavators were launched, offering high levels of productivity at the lowest possible cost of ownership. They are among the quietest, fuel-efficient, environmentally friendly and technologically advanced Hitachi machines to date.