• February 7, 2019
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Aussie Designed & Manufactured Mini Skid Steer Loader Set To Take On The ‘Big Players’

Aussie Designed & Manufactured Mini Skid Steer Loader Set To Take On The ‘Big Players’

In this article:

  • Local Brisbane man Kieron McLoughlin designs and builds his own mini skid steer loader
  • Design and construction ongoing since mid 2017
  • Unique design means surprising features
  • We uncover the impressive specs of this mini loader

Local Brisbane man, Mr Kieron McLoughlin from McLoughlin Mini Loaders Australia, is set to turn the mini loader industry on its head with his Australian designed and manufactured mini skid steer loader. Mr McLoughlin spoke exclusively to Machines4U to talk about his journey, the machine, and its features.

The Journey

McLoughlin mini loader prototype
Pictured: The McLoughlin team hard at work on their prototype. Source: mcloughlinloaders.com

After watching many frustrated customers have to spend more money on larger models they didn’t need, McLoughlin decided enough was enough.

“After having a chat with mates over a beer, a few of us decided, after years in the industry and with our wealth of knowledge, to put everything on the line and manufacture our own Australian designed and built mini skid steer loader.” McLoughlin spoke exclusively to Machines4U.

McLoughlin embodies the true-blue Australian spirit, where his goal is to help his customers by providing a machine that suits their needs, within their budget.

“Our main drivers for this project were to give Australians more options and offer something that is great value for money. We want to help Aussies grow their businesses by providing a solid, reliable machine built in Australia.” Mr McLoughlin said.

They’ve even go so far as to make sure the mini skid steer loader is comprised of Australian components.

“For the chassis, we’ve built as many of the components here in Australia as we can, including the hubs, and some of the valving.”

Working tirelessly every day on his design for a year and a half, Mr McLoughlin and his team have a finished, working prototype and are edging ever-closer to a saleable machine.

A Big Difference In A Small Package

McLoughlin mini loader
Pictured: McLoughlin Aussie Mini Skid Steer Loader. Source: Supplied.

So what makes this mini skid steer loader so different, other than its Australian origin?

More Horsepower

From the outside, it will seem like any other mini loader. But a nice surprise here is they have jam-packed it with much more power. Where you’d expect a 20-horsepower engine, McLoughlin and his team have managed to fit a 27-horsepower diesel engine into its tiny frame.

We managed to squeeze a 27HP machine into a frame that’s usually only designed to hold a smaller HP motor, so it’s extremely compact but it has a very large engine for its size.” McLoughlin explained.

Greater Lift Capacity

Knowing what his customers expect from a mini loader, McLoughlin has made sure all aspects of the machine will tick their boxes.

McLoughlin said, “We’ve also added some internal weight to the frame, so even though it is a small compact machine, it will still have a substantial lifting capacity—around 400kg standard lift capacity.”

Pretty impressive!

More Speed

Faring dirt over long distances doesn’t have to be slow, especially in the McLoughlin mini loader. The team have thought of just about everything. From making the joystick springs more ergonomic, down to designing a one-of-a-kind 3-speed system that uses only 2 hydraulic pumps. How they produced this system is a true Aussie first.

“You’ll have slow, medium and overdrive speeds,” says McLoughlin. “So you’ll have the ability to notch up to third gear, which will give speeds of up to almost 10km/hr. This system was designed and CNC’d in Australia. Nobody has made 3 speeds from 2 pumps like we have, with our unique Australian-made valve.”


Some other key features for this skid steer mini loader include:

  • 3 speeds using a 2-pump configuration that will exponentially speed up productivity.
  • 3D scanned and modelled, meaning the hydraulic oil can follow the path of least resistance, lower heat & increase power.
  • Kohler 23HP petrol & massive 27HP Yanmar diesel engine, fit into a compact 10mm plate frame.
  • Oversize muffler on diesel for quieter operation.
  • Huge estimated 640KG tipping load.
  • Excellent line-of-sight over the front of the machine, allowing the operator to clearly see the implement.
  • Soft-touch controls.
  • Powder coated for longevity.


Please note, these specs are an approximation only, to be confirmed upon product finalisation and launch.

McLoughlin Aussie Petrol McLoughlin Aussie Diesel
Overall Width / Total Width 880-1030 mm 880-1030 mm
Overall Height / Machine Height 1210 mm 1210 mm
Overall Length w/o Bucket 1565 mm 1565 mm
Wheelbase 743 mm 743 mm
Operating Weight 940 kg 1000 kg
Engine Kohler V-Twin Petrol Yanmar 3TNV70 Diesel
Engine horsepower 23.5 HP 27 HP
No. Hydraulic Pumps 2 2
Rated Lift Capacity 325 kg 350 kg
Fuel Capacity 50 L 50 L
Dump Height (Standard) 1440 mm 1440 mm

With more than 100 years of experience between them, and countless hours poured into this machine, Mr Kieron McLoughlin and his team of specialists are nearing completion of their project.

“We’re now in the fine-tuning stage, adjusting tipping angles, rollback angles, and a few other things. This journey is very exciting to watch become a reality. We’re almost ready to launch this to the Australian market, and hope to do so in a couple of months.”

So, if all goes well, we may be seeing a new Aussie mini skid steer loader hit the market in just a few short months. At Machines4U, we can’t wait to see the finished product!

After a new or used skid steer? Check out skid steers for sale here or find skid steers for auction here.

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