JCB Brings Vibromax Back to North America

Feb. 19, 2024
JCB plans to introduce an extensive lineup of compaction equipment.

BY Rod Sutton, editorial director

Editors note: This article has been updated.

Two Vibromax rollers mark JCB’s reentry into North America: CT160 and CT260. The tandem vibratory rollers have been available in markets outside of North America, and the company says it will follow with “an extensive portfolio of compaction equipment.”

Vibromax has good brand loyalty in North America, says James Gill, product manager. Vibromax was marketed by Case until the early 1990s, when the brand was sold to a German group. JCB bought the brand in 2005, but it has not marketed Vibromax products in North America for 10 years, Gill says. JCB has been marketing tandem rollers in the U.K. since 2018, he says, and they have proved themselves. This gives JCB “confidence” that it can come into North America and “attack it, knowing full well we have a high-performing product that we’re really pleased with.”

Read also: JCB to Build Its Second U.S. Plant in San Antonio, Texas

The Vibromax brand was a well-respected product, Gill says, “and we wanted to draw on the heritage that Vibromax had. We are going to have the same kind of quality and performance. It’s not that JCB’s a new player in compaction equipment. We have a long history with Vibromax.”

The rollers are branded JCB Vibromax, which Gill says presented a two-pronged marketing benefit that plays on the strengths of both brands.

JCB will distribute Vibromax-branded machines through its existing construction equipment dealer network, Gill says.

Gill declined to say what other compaction equipment might be introduced in North America, nor what timeline the U.K.-based company might follow. “Look at what we’re selling in the rest of the world,” Gill says, “and that will give you an indication of what’s coming.”

The JCB rollers are currently manufactured in India, but as anticipated demand builds, the company may look at other plants, Gill says.

JCB late last year announced plans to build a manufacturing campus in San Antonio, Texas. The San Antonio location will include a 720,000-square-foot factory and will be dedicated to equipment “largely” for North America, according to the company.

“The growth we’ve experienced in the past few years in North America has been extensive, and demand for our products continues to grow,” said Richard Fox-Marrs, president/CEO, in announcing the investment. “The decision to expand our manufacturing footprint will bring us even closer to our customers and will allow us to further capitalize on market opportunities in North America.”

JCB Vibromax rollers

The CT160 uses either a 31.5- or 39.4-inch drum, with operating weights of 3,704 and 3,946 pounds. It is powered by a 19-horsepower Kubota engine. The CT260 has a 39.4 or 47.2-inch drum and a 24.4-horsepower Kubota engine. Operating weights are 5,335 and 5,644 pounds.

A responsive directional drive lever enables smooth fore and aft movements, and operators can clearly see the drum edges. Anti-vibration mounts reduce fatigue by isolating the operator from the drum vibrations.

Automatic vibration control is standard with settings for vibration for both drums, vibration for the rear drum only, or vibration for the front drum only.

Read also: How Intelligent Compaction Makes Paving Safer

The manually adjustable offset on the front drum enables the operator to avoid damage to curbs and ironwork. The rear drum is flush with the rear chassis so operators can work close to walls or obstacles. Chamfered edges on the drums ensure a smooth finish, a pressurized water spray system keeps the drums clean during operation, and the drum scraper bars (two per drum) are easy to adjust whether working with stone or asphalt.

All engine service points are accessible at ground level, and a high lift, tilt up engine hood provides access to all daily maintenance checks. The radiator sits at the center of the machines for protection and easy cleaning. This also makes it easier for the operator to access the battery and other service points. The water spray systems are equipped with replaceable, easy-to-fit bayonet nozzles with filters; they use stainless steel spray bars.

Vibromax CT160-80 Specifications

  • Operating weight: 3,704 lb.
  • Working width: 31.5 in.
  • Nominal amplitude: 0.016 in.
  • Centrifugal force, each drum: 2,452 / 4,297 lb.-ft.
  • Power: 19 hp

 Vibromax CT160-100 Specifications

  • Operating weight: 3,770 lb.
  • Working width: 39.4 in.
  • Nominal amplitude: 0.014 in.
  • Centrifugal force, each drum: 2,452 / 4,297 lb.-ft.
  • Power: 19 hp

Vibromax CT260-100 Specifications

  • Operating weight: 2,420 lb.
  • Working width: 39.4 in.
  • Nominal amplitude: 0.22 in.
  • Centrifugal force, each drum: 5,310 / 9,247 lb.-ft.
  • Power: 24.4 hp

Vibromax CT260 Specifications

  • Operating weight: 5,644 lb.
  • Working width: 47.2 in.
  • Nominal amplitude: 0.20 in.
  • Centrifugal force, each drum: 5,310 / 9,247 lb.-ft.
  • Power: 24.4 hp