The Hubtex DQ-X redesign is a perfect match for timber.

Think of the typical Australian timber yard and you could be imagining anything from vast concrete-floored sheds filled with racks to snow melting in tyre tracks near Tumut. Happily, top European manufacturers have taken the enormous size of the nation and our wildly varying conditions on board when it comes to their product for the Australian market. The freshly re-designed Hubtex DQ 45-X Multidirectional Sideloader is a perfect case in point.

Based on the old Hubtex DQ series, which was renowned for its reliability as a universal lifter/transporter/stacker, the German design team has delivered multiple improvements in the upgrade. The redesigned model raises an already high standard when it comes to ergonomics, performance efficiency and environmental targets, without sacrificing any of the effective long load carrying that made its predecessor a favourite.

While spending on new equipment might not be at the front of your mind right now, with the instant asset write-off threshold still temporarily lifted to $150,000 and eligibility expanded to businesses with an aggregated turnover of up to $500 million, this is the ideal time to invest if you have the cash or a line of ready credit.

Driver experience

Users have been at the heart of the redesign process, both the forklift driver and the co-workers as well as customers around them. The previous generation of the DQ-X, released in 2016, already boasted a highly ergonomic driver’s cab and the best all-round visibility on the market. Both have been further improved in the new DQ 45-X.

Visibility benefits from the combination of a highly robust all-glass door with sash window, free lift mast and compact fork carrier. The mast has been specifically designed to improve visibility to the load and the more compact mast and fork carriages allow operators to see more of the load from the cabin. In vehicles with higher load capacities, the mast profiles are further apart in order to meet the higher capacity.

The windshield and windows have been designed for reduced reflections, so the operator is less likely to be distracted. In addition, Hubtex has further reduced blind spots when reversing by improving the design of the left rear cab pillar.

Comfort-wise, the large cabin features extra legroom and ergonomic controls that keep the operator going without strain. For those outside, in addition to the increased visibility and resultant safety when moving through working yards, the DQ 45-X’s hydraulics are optimised to lower noise levels in the warehouse – as well as inside the cabin.

The standard DQ 45-X now also comes with an easy-to-use larger touch-screen display that can also be used as a monitor for camera attachments, further increasing safety in heavily pedestrianised workplaces.

Winter and summer conditions are both catered for: the heating system is optimised with a recirculation function and insulated pipe connections. In cold and wet conditions, these hold heat in the cabin. On hot days, the radiator draws air across the engine and expels the heat transferred (at the far end of the machine from the cabin) for operator comfort and lower running temperature.

Real performance

The DQ 45-X has a load capacity of up to just over 4 tonnes, suitable for the vast majority of timber yards, fabricators, mills and hardware stores. From loading and unloading trucks to operating in narrow aisles or block storage, the all-wheel drive and elastic tyres allow the unit to function flawlessly on even and uneven ground – even rugged outside yards. Combined with the innovative four-way steering system, the sideloader maximises efficiency with tight turning circles (steering lock has increased by 20° on the previous model) and under normal driving conditions can switch from lengthwise to crosswise drive without stopping in up to 40% less time than its predecessor.

A new, low-noise, low-emission turbo motor guarantees maximum performance and energy efficiency, powered by either LPG or diesel. With impressively low energy consumption and emissions cut up to 30% on the previous model, it provides a high-performance result thanks to an intelligent vehicle control system.

Three different driving modes – Eco, Sensitive and Speed – can be selected depending on the job requirements. Low energy consumption minimises exhaust emissions and fuel consumption is reduced to 4.8 litres per operating hour compared to the 6 litres consumed by the previous model during factory testing. The automatic speed increase function ensures that the hydraulic system is provided with precisely the amount of energy it requires.

The DQ 45-X’s load sensing system also guarantees an economical driving style. Its stabilisation assistance system provides improved manoeuvrability and smooth transport when handling timber products (or other merchandise in the case of retailer users). This system prevents unwanted rocking movements during operation and in the case of abrupt braking, delivering a reduction in damaged materials. The system has been further optimised for stability during lengthwise driving and cornering.

Although based in Germany, the design team took on board years of feedback from  Australian customers and the local team and have delivered a model suited to our tough conditions, whether searing summer temperatures, sub-zero winter’s days or lengthy wet seasons. Timber suppliers and fabricators operate 12 months of the year in all conditions, and Hubtex has worked to make sure their materials handling equipment is able to cope with whatever the climate throws at it.

For users whose plant includes open-air yards, the DQ 45-X operates a hydrostatic drive system with wheel motors so all three wheels drive. In the case of softer boggy ground the machine features a diff lock so that if one wheel is in a pothole or soft earth, the diff lock will ensure the oil is distributed to all wheels equally and the machine will pull itself out of trouble.

Hydraulics are optimised so that when the hydraulic controls are activated the engine revs are automatically increased without the need for the operator to use the accelerator, ensuring machines are not over-revved which saves fuel consumption and reduces noise levels both inside the cabin and in the warehouse generally.

Hubtex Australia has multiple DQ 45-X Multidirectional Sideloaders available in stock now, so there’s no concern about delivery in time for the $150,000 instant asset write-off cut-off installation date of 31 December 2020. And for anyone planning on using this quiet time to plan a whole warehouse restructure, the write-off can also be applied to multiple assets as long as each is below the relevant threshold.

For more on the DQ 45-X or to discuss customisation requirements, call 1300 365 621 or email