The GTH-5519 from Genie Industries, Redmond, Wash., is produced in Italy and marketed as a ground-engaging telehandler. During the event, a football analogy was made, comparing ground engaging machines to linebackers and pick-and-place machines to wide receivers. Genie, however, characterized the GTH-5519 as being more like a “tight end.”
Terex, now Genie's parent company, was one of the first to capitalize on the market opportunity for compact handlers when it introduced the 5519 in 2000. Three years later, the TX-5519 was introduced; since then it has undergone a few enhancements. Through Genie's well-established rental customer base, the re-branded Genie GTH-5519 is easily the largest selling compact in North America. Excellent visibility, tight dimensions, and a weight of less than 10,000 pounds — the lightest machine in the field — set up the GTH-5519 to be quick and nimble.
Although Genie markets this model as a ground-engaging machine, I see it as a top-notch tool handler. The company has given a lot of attention to the tool interface on this machine. A standard auxiliary-hydraulic system comes with a unique control system. Located in the cab is a three-position electric switch for the selection of full continuous auxiliary flow, auxiliary flow metering, and flow reversal. The hydraulic quick-attach coupler is standard equipment, meaning the operator doesn't have to get out of the cab to change a tool unless it is powered.
A universal-attachment-adapter package is designed to work with most aftermarket skid-steer tools. Because the attachment hydraulic system is closed, Genie has included a back-pressure/relief block, which relieves pressure and/or locks flow for the easy and safe unplugging of any attachment.
Although the Showcase machine featured the optional enclosed cab, an open cab comes standard. An enclosure kit is available and can be field-installed. A tilt steering wheel and a fully adjustable seat are standard, with a full-suspension seat as an option. In the event of a rollover, the front window is designed to serve as an emergency exit. Although they appear to be more cosmetic than functional, the composite fenders at all four points give the unit a stylish and finished look.
A Perkins 804C-33 diesel engine that kicks out 63 horsepower at 2,600 rpm is side-mounted low for enhanced visibility. Engine positioning provides excellent access to all service points, and the unit is equipped with a separate engine coolant and oil radiator. The hydraulic system is protected by a 10-micron return filter, and the engine breathes through a dry element system. Under a rear hatch, you will find the fueling point for the 16-gallon tank and easy access to extension cylinder and rear wear pads.
Rexroth supplies the single-speed hydrostatic drive system that powers Dana Spicer axles, with a limited slip differential in the front. Braking is spring-applied, hydraulically released. Dynamic braking is infinitely variable and utilizes fully enclosed wet disc brakes.
It is important to note that just after the event, major upgrades were announced, which all current production machines now have. Some of the major improvements include a completely redesigned interior and updates to the auxiliary hydraulic system. New options include a road light package and diesel exhaust scrubber. Buyers can even opt for a Tier 3-compliant Deutz 2011 — a 3-liter, 68-horsepower engine. The fenders also have been replaced with larger, more durable ABS versions.
Whether you call it a tight end or a linebacker, the GTH-5519 is certainly a versatile performer for almost any task.