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Talk about the history of the development Komatsu excavator

Talk about the history of the development Komatsu excavator – why 20 years has maintained a steady development?Why become the world’s second-largest construction machinery manufacturing enterprises?

Komatsu company was founded in 1921, is the world’s second-largest construction machinery manufacturing enterprises. Although Komatsu in the 21st century has experienced several severe economic crisis, but Komatsu has not been overthrown, but getting stronger.

Today, repair-guidebook.com talk Komatsu nearly two years of development history, from a different point of view to understand the story behind the product Komatsu.

- komatsu company was founded in 1921
Komatsu company founded in 1921 in Japan komatsu, early repair business for Europe for copper mines mining machinery manufacturing. Company founder takeuchi Ming, is a man full of enterprising spirit, in the last century 20 s to “to foreign development”, “quality first”, “technological innovation”, “talent cultivation” as the entrepreneurial spirit.
From 1956 to 1978
This time period, komatsu completely, in the form of complete vehicle export trade with China.

1980 – Caterpillar “vigorously suppressed”

In 1980, Caterpillar enter the Japanese market, by virtue of its overwhelmingly occupy the Japanese construction equipment market, Komatsu’s market share gradually decreased.
Then again, this sense of crisis was eventually transformed into Komatsu’s source of power to carry out quality improvement, and to achieve a qualitative leap in the product. Since then, Caterpillar Inc. has been followed as Komatsu, trying to catch up with the enterprise. . Komatsu’s President Masahiro Sakane (坂根正弘) once said: “For the purposes Komatsu, Caterpillar Inc. has always had to look up is a matter of existence.”

Komatsu Development Process Figure

1985 – Komatsu set up factories in the United States and the localization of production
In 1985, Japan overtook the U.S. as the world’s largest creditor nation, Japanese-made products are now flooding the world. Frenzied pace of expansion in Japan’s capital, the Americans exclaimed, “Japan will peaceful occupation USA!”
September 1985, the United States, Japan, Germany, France, Britain and other governments to reach five joint intervention in the foreign exchange market, the dollar against major currencies in an orderly manner down to address America’s huge trade deficit. “Plaza Agreement” the surface of the economic backdrop is the solution to the U.S. dollar overvalued due to the huge trade deficit caused, but has a large number of Japanese investors in U.S. dollar assets of view, “Plaza Agreement” is to combat America’s largest creditor country – Japan.


And it is with this “Plaza Agreement” after the appreciation of the yen as an opportunity to Komatsu began in Tennessee Chattanooga City has its own factory, and started local production in the United States. At the same time, the Chinese state-owned enterprises Komatsu also conducted a number of technology transfer. In addition, Komatsu also cooperate with the Chinese state-owned enterprises in order to produce some of the means of production “Komatsu” brand products. It can be said that for the future Komatsu equipment, “60% localization of parts and components production, 40% in Japan” made ​​a good start.

1995 – Komatsu set up factories in China qualified models and specifications
In 1995, Komatsu began to direct investment approach factories in China and started local production.

Perhaps in the eyes of many, engineering machinery looks are similar, do not see the differences between them, in fact, there are engineering machinery countless combinations of various configurations. Such as excavators air-conditioned and non air-conditioned, with a common specification seat or seat with shock absorbers, the cab is sealed or open type and so on.

However, for many products, can actually praised by users are often concentrated in particular on several models, most of the derivative / special specifications can not sell a few a year. For manufacturers, the market could easily grasp the serious inventory.
In the 95 years or so, the then managing director of Komatsu Masahiro Sakane proposed “the standard model is limited to a certain number of” instructions. Reduced models derived species, no longer launched the “exhaustive” series of products, thereby reducing the rate of product inventory. This is actually a successful practical application of ICT systems, but also the Komatsu “Kang Chas” System predecessor.

ICT systems

ICT systems


What is ICT systems?
ICT, namely information and communication technology, is the circulation of Komatsu  products for the good management of the development of an information system software. The system will be designed to agents ICT systems and ICT systems Komatsu linkage, in order to be able to grasp the sale Komatsu forefront situation. Can make the plant side and sell-side exchange information, to avoid occurrence of inventory and stock of the situation.

2000 – Emerging markets in Asia as the center of the curtain pattern
From the entire world, in 2000, before and after the construction machinery market in Europe and America, engineering, mining machinery demand accounted for 80% of total world demand, and now this proportion had dropped to about 30%. In other words, in the emerging markets in Asia as the center of a new era pattern formally opened.
Komatsu Internally, Europe and Japan market is referred to as “traditional markets”, and at this stage the traditional market is no longer the main battlefield Komatsu. Komatsu’s goal has began to shift to the emerging markets led by China, while Komatsu be known as “strategic market.”
During this period, it comes to mainstream engineering machinery generally refers to hydraulic excavators. Before 2000, the Chinese hydraulic technology is relatively backward, so the Chinese market basically does not exist hydraulic excavators. Later, Caterpillar, Komatsu hydraulic excavators and other enterprises the product to China. So in a very long time, Chinese hydraulic excavator is basically foreign brands on the market has been in a dominant position.
As one of the main engineering machinery hydraulic excavator market, the last century 90’s, including Komatsu, including foreign brand manufacturers than about ten. Until around 2000, at least 14 Chinese domestic brands are also added to the market in the past, which makes China become the world’s most competitive market. During this period, according to the records, Komatsu maintains the highest market share.

2001 – Komatsu crisis and structural reforms
2001-2002, Komatsu appeared on crisis management, operating deficit reached 80 billion yen, companies began to save their structural reform.
However,Komatsu, after all, is Japan’s largest construction machinery enterprises, the construction machinery market share in Japan’s domestic market has long maintained the first place, its performance is also on the international market after the United States, Caterpillar, ranking second in the world. Thus, despite facing funding difficulties, but it will not easily fall Komatsu. From this time onwards, Komatsu began a fairly complete “structural reforms.”

2002 – All products have done the best in the world
During the implementation of structural reforms in the operation, Komatsu merger and reorganization of its subsidiary undertakings carried out very thorough. At Komatsu’s philosophy is: “No matter what the cause, only to have the status of one of the best in the world, to the fierce competition to win and survive.”

Komatsu product of the indicators are in the world as the goal

Komatsu product of the indicators are in the world as the goal

To this end, Komatsu continued implementation of the cause and the product selection and concentration, the specific policy is: “has its own unique technology to allow the combined effect of these technologies play out as the goal, let career towards a world first, two efforts. ”
For the third in the world at that time still in the following products, Komatsu’s goal is to own “absolute advantage” technology to fight the world, at the same time, strive to become in emerging markets such as China share of the first products . Data show that, until now, Komatsu products sold in about nearly 85 percent the proportion is a world-leading technology products contributed.
It can be said that these measures so that Komatsu has achieved tangible results. In 2002, the Komatsu’s results achieved satisfactory improvement, operating deficit finally turnaround.

2004 – Chinese government’s macroeconomic regulation and KOMTRAX system alarms
2004, the Chinese government in the domestic implementation of the macro-control policies, to the then mechanical engineering market has brought a very big impact, insiders have pointed out, its impact as much as in 2008 when the U.S. financial crisis situation, the control efforts can be imagined.
At that time, Europe and other developed economies are in the recovery phase, China’s exports have experienced strong growth. To avoid economic bubble, the Chinese government has made a decision to tightening macro-control policy, and began development zones in the country nearly about 6000 items to be sorted out. We know that the development zone construction requires a lot of construction machinery and equipment, so once the project was stopped, tens of thousands of construction machinery and equipment becomes a decoration.

KOMTRAX system

KOMTRAX system

It now appears that, if not timely noticed the rapid changes in the market and continue to produce it, the result would be back to the product caused by piles of inventory, is bound to affect the company’s normal operations. Komatsu was unable to change the status quo, but because of “health Chas” system, so that he can be compared with industry manufacturers noticed earlier this unusual event soon. Thus, to take timely Komatsu plant shutdowns in China three months of measures in order to survive with minimal consideration of this difficult period.
KOMTRAX system is also not a panacea thing, do not expect it to predict the future. But for Komatsu, it is precisely because of this system, allows companies for each region, each of which models to monitor changes in every moment, and according to the information obtained to grasp the vast expanse of the Chinese market have occurred various changes.


KOMTRAX system is what?
Komatsu KOMTRAX system, is based on cutting-edge information and communication technologies (lCT) remote vehicle management system. Currently KOMTRAX system has been used as the standard configuration of the vehicle, applied to each one excavator products.
KOMTRAX system called “equipment” Guardian, allowing devices to the various “health” information and timely feedback to the user to help users take preventive measures and do routine maintenance work, keep the equipment in good condition.
In addition, KOMTRAX system or user traffic management is a good helper, the user can through the computer (Internet), mobile Internet and mobile phone text messages to query information at any time, homes can easily achieve vehicle management.

2008 – cutting-edge products available hybrid excavator
This year, Komatsu in Japan, will be the first hybrid hydraulic excavator market. Compared with conventional hydraulic excavator, the price although expensive, but hybrid excavator with low fuel consumption of the prominent features.

Generation hybrid hydraulic excavator Komatsu

Komatsu  developed the first listing of “hybrid hydraulic excavator,” is the absolute advantage of a huge project results. As the carbon dioxide emissions caused by the growing concern about global warming, coupled with the 21st century soaring crude oil prices, we began to realize that relying solely on fossil resources are not a permanent solution. So hybrid technology beginning to receive attention.

Komatsu in June 2008 began selling the first hybrid hydraulic excavator, which uses a new excavator construction – the use of kinetic energy during deceleration rotation to drive the generator motor, which will be recovered kinetic energy into electrical energy. Rotary body can be generated by deceleration energy into electrical energy storage, and the engine speed when the auxiliary energy re-use and thus can significantly reduce fuel consumption.
By Komatsu excavator hybrid system can achieve a substantial increase in fuel efficiency, test data showed that the average estimates of 25% savings in fuel consumption. Users in Japan during the actual test measured data even showed a 41 percent savings in fuel. In turn the higher the frequency of the construction site, the more it can reflect the effect of fuel savings. Hybrid hydraulic excavator as compared with the conventional construction machinery, hybrid hydraulic excavator includes a storage device such as an additional part, so the price is correspondingly higher.

Generation hybrid hydraulic excavator Komatsu

Generation hybrid hydraulic excavator Komatsu

Komatsu has been able to establish themselves in the Chinese market, but also precisely because Komatsu has been working for the users to launch hybrid excavator such as the most cutting-edge products, coupled with the durability of Komatsu products, as well as failure and reliable product support system for Komatsu has won a good reputation. Although the reason for the price, hybrid hydraulic excavator has not yet become a mainstream product, but will continue to develop small models of Komatsu products, make every effort to reduce costs.

2010 – an annual output of 30,000 sets of hydraulic excavators and can not be ignored, “the Association of Enterprise”
Spring in early 2010, China’s construction machinery market demand growth spurt, Komatsu local production can not meet, only emergency from Osaka, Japan factory finished car exports to China to deal with.

Komatsu advantages and features
Finally, we briefly tidy Komatsu as the world’s second largest manufacturer of construction machinery What are the characteristics and advantages:
1, Komatsu’s corporate culture: Komatsu Spirit
Corporate culture in the enterprise would have a negligible effect, maybe some people will think that corporate culture is simply a few slogans, no effect, and if so wrong to think so. Enterprise culture has a great impact on employees, the lack of corporate culture in the development of enterprises is no advantage, it can mobilize the enthusiasm of staff, but also harder to do things, the enterprise would have a negligible impact.

Komatsu spirit is a kind of improvement

Komatsu spirit is a kind of improvement

(1) the pursuit of quality and integrity – win an absolute advantage, the quality of products judged by others and so on.
(2) emphasis on customer – Komatsu is the customer’s partner, giving priority to solve customer problems.
(3) source management – efforts to narrow the gap between ideal and reality, repeatedly asked why the other five.
(4) emphasis on the scene – to observe the scene, reality visualization.
(5) implement the policy – policy deployment capability is Komatsu’s strengths, not satisfied with the status quo.
(6) and collaboration with partners – the Association of attention with agents and business cooperation.
(7) personnel training, vitality – the training of personnel management is important work.
It can be said, the Essential Komatsu, the “improvement.” In fact, Komatsu spirit is not a simple sum of these words, it will follow the development of the times changed once every few years will be revised.

2, KOMTRAX system utilize – Visualization Market

Komatsu KOMTRAX system is based on cutting-edge information and communication technologies (lCT) remote vehicle management system. Currently, the health system has been used as a vehicle Chas standard configurations for each one excavator products. It not only can monitor the location of the product, but also the parameters of the product, work status feedback to the manufacturers, and to remind the user to do maintenance, etc..
KOMTRAX system is also not a panacea thing, it can not predict the future. But for Komatsu, it is precisely because of this system, allows companies for each region, each of which models to monitor changes in every moment, and according to the information obtained to grasp the vast expanse of the Chinese market have occurred various changes.

3, customer needs careful study, the accumulation of years of reputation
“Komatsu’s products, though the price is slightly more expensive, but high reliability, less downtime, from the results speaking absolute bargain.”
It is said that this is the Komatsu dealer sales staff in China in persuading hesitant customers to buy the product, and the time-tested frequently used word.

4, not the pursuit of product model exhaustive, limited number of products, standardized models
The specification model is limited to a certain number, reducing the models derived types, not to launch “exhaustive” series of products, thereby reducing the slow-moving inventory models, avoiding the waste of corporate fixed expenses.

Core technology is still the first productive enterprise
In Japan gathered many well-known manufacturer of hydraulic excavators, many of whom Komatsu, Hitachi Construction Machinery, Kobelco Construction Machinery, Sumitomo Construction Machinery and other big companies, even Caterpillar hydraulic excavator will of its R & D center is located in the Japan. Since the strength of the Japanese manufacturer brings together many R & D center, and hence the hydraulic excavator is basically related technologies born in Japan, too.

According to industry concerned parties, in the current portion of industry in Japan there has been a rather awkward situation, although in Japan developed a new technology and products, but they are not as perceived by people outside world, and thus ultimately do not enter the international market, which in the final analysis because of lack of international vision caused.
Because of this, such as Komatsu hydraulic excavator has technically still firmly maintain the world’s leading companies, it is more valuable.

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