John Deere has unveiled the next generation of its 700-size-class dozers. After working closely with the owners and operators of the previous generation K-Series to develop these new machines, the 700L and 750L dozers boast more power, more comfort, more visibility and refreshed electro-hydraulic controls.
The results are a pair of dozers built to run all day while keeping operators comfortable in the process.
You’ll find all the details and footage of the 700L and 750L in our latest video below. Or, if you prefer text, you can read the full story after the break.
Deere product marketing manager for crawler dozers, Nathan Horstman tells us that these two dozers are primarily aimed at site development, road building and underground construction applications.
“Some of the biggest things our customers are going to notice about this 700L dozer is really the power of this machine. At 135 horsepower it’s still got the same great balance that the 700K had,” he says. “The next thing they’re going to notice when they get the seat of that machine, they’re going to notice how big and open and spacious the cab is and the great visibility, all around but especially to the blade and forward on the machine.”
The 700L and 750L are slated for release in mid-June 2020.
Like the K-Series machines before them, the 700L and 750L are powered by a 6.8-liter John Deere engine. However, the new models feature slight increases in horsepower over the K-Series. The 700L sees a 5-hp boost to 135 hp while the 750L sees a 10-hp boost to 175 hp.
“One of the things customers told us is that we should keep the six-cylinder 6.8-liter engine. While a lot of the industry has gone to a four cylinder engine, we’ve still got this larger higher displacement engine. What that does for us is give us class leading horsepower,” he says. “[The 700L] is 135 hp and that extra torque with that higher displacement engine lets the operator push through harder material, harder spots when they’re grading.”
The 700L weighs in at a range between 30,900 and 32,088 pounds. Deere has also increased the operating weight of the 750L by 750 pounds and the machine now weighs in at a range between 37,569 and 40,040 pounds depending on the configuration you opt for.
Deere says the increased weight improves tractive effort on the 750L while also providing better balance for an overall boost to the 750L’s performance.
Blade capacity on the 700L ranges between 4.4 and 5.1 cubic yards while the 750L ranges between 5.2 and 6 cubic yards.
Deere is also offering new, wider blade options with these dozers, including a 161-inch blade option on the 750L, which Deere says is the widest blade offered in this size class. The 700L meanwhile features integrated spill sheets that further increase blade capacity on that machine.
The 700L has 8 feet, 2 inches of track on the ground while the 750L has 10 feet, 2 inches. Deere is offering three levels of undercarriage on the 700 and 750L:
- Heavy duty sealed and lubricated track (SALT)
- Extended life undercarriage
- Max life undercarriage
“With the extended life undercarriage you get a very hard coating on the bushings and that gives us about 50 percent more life than a standard sealed and lubricated track,” Horstman says. “With Max Life you get that really hard coating on the bushing but you also get larger track links. You get a little more meat on the idler, you get a little more meat on the rollers—this is a seven roller undercarriage—and a little more meat on the carrier rollers.”
Both models will be available in XLT (extra long track) or LGP (low ground pressure) configurations.
Let’s move on to the cab of these dozers, which Deere calls a ground-up redesign.
With this new cab Deere says it was focused on increasing visibility and making the operator more comfortable. Horstman says the cab on these L-Series dozers is 17 percent larger than the K-Series models while offering door openings that are 14 percent larger.
“We know our operators spend more time in their cab sometimes than they do at home. So we definitely wanted to make it a nice place to be,” Horstman says. “We’ve got the new [optional] heated and ventilated seat…that heating option and a ventilation option that’s going to pull air away from the operator and keep them comfortable all day.”
The new cabs can also be equipped with optional automatic temperature control like you’d find a new pickup and a rear view camera.
Horstman says that increasing visibility forward and to the blade was a big focus for Deere in the design of the new cab.
“We opened up the size of these windows…the width of them are 16 percent wider than they were before. That front window is wider, it’s taller,” Horstman explains. “If you look to the side over the track, you can see that you can see the track. And the ones outside the track, we lowered those windows down. While we’re talking about the windows, one of the things that we did is we actually went to pop-out windows. The reason we did that is sometimes the sliding windows tend to rattle. You tend to get silt in the bottom of the slides and they don’t work as well over time.”
Plus, Horstman says Deere has achieved a huge reduction in noise on the 700L. “We reduced noise by 50 percent and one of the things that allows that is these new viscous cab mounts,” he says.
Operators will also find new electro-hydraulic controls in these L-Series machines. “One of the big improvements on [the left side] is instead of having to move the lever fore and aft, say to get in forward and reverse, we actually just have a rocker switch here,” Horstman says.
While we were checking out the cab of the 700L at ConExpo, Horstman also showed us the revamped custom transmission settings that you have at your disposal in these new dozers.
“We’ve always had really good control of our transmission. We’ve always given operators ways to tweak the way the transmission acts and feels. One of the pieces of feedback we got was it was a little bit complicated. So what we did is made transmission presets,” Horstman explains. “So we recommend for most operators to be in the normal setting. If you want the machine to be a little snappier—more aggressive—we’ve got a production setting and we have a smooth setting. Think of the smooth setting as kind of like a Cadillac. So the machine’s gonna roll out a little bit more on reversals, it’s going to just feel a little bit smoother, a little lazier.”
Deere has also put in a torque shift mode which basically allows the 700 and 750L’s hydrostatic transmission to emulate the feel of a torque converter machine.
“If you’re getting somebody that’s coming out of a machine with a torque converter, that’s going to give them a little bit higher increment gear shift, and make it feel a little bit more like a torque converter machine,” Horstman says.
“And then we’ve also got the custom menu and the custom menu essentially has all the stuff that the Deere dozers have always had in terms of adjustments to the transmission. So you can adjust the aggressiveness of the tracks, the acceleration rate, the decel rate, the forward and reverse rate, steer rate and speed in grip step size,” he adds.
The cab on these machines also features a new 7-inch color monitor that displays need-to-know operation data and grade control information.
“Another improvement we made with this new 700L dozer is we actually raised up the grade control monitor not only so you can interact with it more but also to get it in line of sight with the blade,” Horstman says. “So when the operator is looking from the right side to the left side of the blade, he or she can cross through and check out the grade control monitor.”
Grade control options
Deere is also offering a factory-installed entry level grade control system called slope control on these machines. Deere says this system automatically maintains blade angle without the need for an external laser or GPS reference. For novice operators, that means hitting grade more accurately, while veteran operators should be able to hold grade with less effort.
“Slope control essentially allows an operator to input a cross slope and a main fall angle and make a very basic slope or basic pad without the need for GPS or GNSS satellite coverage or without the need for like a laser elevation reference,” Horstman says.
When opting for slope control from the factory, the machines also come SmartGrade-ready, should you want to upgrade to Deere’s 3D mastless system in the future.
To increase uptime, these next generation dozers have optimized hydraulic hose and electrical harness routings to reduce the possibility of rub points.
“The engineers spent a lot of time to make sure each hose and harness had its own location to make sure it wasn’t rubbing against anything,” Horstman says. “All the hoses are externally wrapped in a metal spring. Another wrap around the hoses going to the blade. We actually have a cable in there that if you were to get a branch or something in there that would help to keep those hoses from getting ripped out.”
Additionally, hydraulic and hydrostatic oil change intervals are extended to 4,000 hours, reducing operating cost. That should save you 13.5 percent in fluid and filter costs over the life of this machine.
Plus, the sheet metal on the service doors of the machines is 50 percent thicker with improved sealing. Deere has also gone with an in-line DEF filter on these models for easier replacement.