Citing rising demand from contractors, equipment manufacturer Pettibone has launched the Traverse T944X telehandler, its first lateral-traverse machine since 2013. Boasting a 44-ft lift height, the machine is also able to move the carriage forward at full extension an additional 70 in. This feature allows for the machine to load and unload over obstacles on jobsites. Pettibone showed the machine for the first time at the World of Concrete show in Las Vegas on Jan. 23.

"Just a few years ago there were a couple of brands in the market that had a traversing unit, us being one of them,” says Kyle Rubin, director of sales and marketing for Pettibone. “For various reasons we both bowed out of that industry for a while. But we did see a lot of customers asking for it the last few years, so we’re excited to bring it back.”

The T944X features several improvement over the last version Pettibone put out, including a 74-hp Cummins Tier 4 Final engine and a design standardized around the manufacturer’s current lineup of telehandlers. A 117-hp engine is also available as an option. The previous traverse telehandler ran on a Tier 3 engine, and the cost of switching to Tier 4 Final emissions controls was part of the decision to discontinue that model, according to Pettibone representatives.

But the demand for a traverse carriage drove the company to revive the product line, says Rubin. “Imagine pulling up to a building, putting the unit in park, raising the boom to the full 44 ft height, traverse forward 70 in., and land the load,” he says. “That’s something that’s unique to this unit and makes it more safe and versatile [than a fixed-carriage telehandler].”

Aside from the traversing carriage, the 9,000 lb Traverse T944X is virtually identical to the non-traverse Extendo 944X, with parts commonality allowing for easier fleet maintenance. The Traverse T944X has a price premium of roughly 10% to 15% over the Extendo 944X, but it’s added features allow it to compete with telehandlers in the 56-ft class, says Rubin.