Caterpillar announced that it is expanding its recently introduced RP series of portable generators with the introduction of the 12 kW model RP12000 E. Late last year, Caterpillar announced the launch of the all-new RP series, as well as an entirely new marketing organization, the Omni Channel, to sell the sets, and other products globally into non-traditional markets such as home and outdoor power, as well as more traditional contractor and worksite uses. The Omni Channel organization is part of Cat’s Caterpillar Marketing & Digital Division.
The new RP12000 E is now the largest of the new generator sets joining 3.6 kW, 5.5 kW, 6.5 kW and 7.5 kW models. All five are gasoline powered gen-sets.
According to Nick Kelsch, Omni Channel marketing manager, the new 12 kW model completes the RP series, with first commercial availability in US & Canada expected in July. It is expected that the Omni Channel organization will launch additional new products, some in power generation, during 2017 and into 2018.
Kelsch also added that its unique-for-Cat multi-channel distribution strategy also continues to expand and now numbers over 550 sales locations with more updates to the distribution network planned in the next few months.
He also noted that Omni Channel has opened its first sales and service channels in the UK, and will be introducing the RP line via several trade shows in Europe this summer as it expands its sales into Europe.
The new RP12000 E (E=electric start) is designed to deliver 12kW of running power, Cat said, with new features designed to meet the specific needs of what it calls the “pro-sumer” – emergency home back-up, DIY enthusiasts and contractors.
The RP Series initially launched in North America in September 2016 with four models, ranging from 3.6 to 7.5 kW. The series is the first prime product designed, engineered and supported by Caterpillar specifically for consumers. The generators are now available in the US and Canada via the over 550 Cat Home & Outdoor Power sales locations, which include regional and local retailers, traditional Cat dealers and online retailers (currently Electric Generators Direct and Amazon).
Like the other products in the series, the RP12000 E was designed by Caterpillar engineering teams based in Illinois and the United Kingdom. Key design elements, Kelsch said include power output and quality, ease of use, run-time, low noise, overall value and durability.
The RP12000E has a new, larger frame to house the larger, 670cc V-twin engine. Engineers upgraded this model with an all copper generator head, which Cat said produces high quality, even power with low harmonic distortion (<5% THD) that makes it suitable for tools with sensitive electronics. Also included is a low-idle mode option to optimize fuel consumption and noise levels and reduce engine wear. The set has a runtime of over 11 hours (at 50% load).
In addition to the low idle mode, engineers designed a custom muffler and positioned the extra-large steel fuel tank on top of the engine to further minimize noise levels. The design also prevents damage from vibration.
Like other models in the series, the RP12000 E includes a lighted, single side-operators station, enabling the user to start and operate the generator without having to walk around or move it. The panel houses nine receptacles including a 50A 240V outlet, which is unique to this model and required for many heavy-duty tools. The RP12000 E also includes a removable lifting eye and handle, and is designed with a balanced center of gravity, which test users noted made it easy to push and pull around, even at a weight of over 400 lbs. Caterpillar said.
The RP 12000 E is constructed of solid 32mm steel, which is treated and coated to prevent corrosion and rust. The large metal wheels include integrated bearings and solid rubber tires. The RP12000 E comes with a 2-year warranty (extended to 3 years when the product is registered), which includes parts and service for the entire warranty term, and all RP Series products are backed by Caterpillar’s 24/7 customer support.
For more information on the RP Series, including where to distribution locations, visit: http://www.cat.com/homeandoutdoorpower.