• April 3, 2019
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Cat Grader M Series Overview

Cat Grader M Series Overview

If you want to deliver your project with more power and technology, the Cat grader M series could have the machine for you. Cat claims this series will improve comfort, productivity and reduce operating costs.

The Cat grader M series is made up of 5 models including the:

The M Series machines are well suited to heavy construction, governmental and mining road projects. Each machine is equipped with the latest Cat Connect technology, which aims to improve job site efficiency.

So, how do the Caterpillar graders stack up? Let’s take a look at the key features, specs, price, pros and cons to find out.

Cat Grader M Series Key Features

The Cat grader M series continues Caterpillar’s reputation for word-class controls and cab design. With the addition of more power, features and integrated technology, it’s no surprise these graders sit well among the competition.

A few key features all models of the M series include:

  • Cat Grade Control technology
  • Engine idle shutdown
  • ACERT engine technology
  • Automatic differential lock system
  • Bluetooth connectivity
  • Reverse camera

With the inclusion of their fastest and most accurate factory-fitted Cat Grade Control, the M series allows users to improve productivity without increased effort. Each M series model is also fitted with AccuGrade software which allows these Cat graders to deliver a smoother rise on the blade. Caterpillar has also improved fuel efficiency, reduced tyre wear and powertrain wind-up.

While these new features are a great upgrade for owners and operators, a new grader is a big investment. So, if you’re a fan of the 140H grader, see how it compares to the newer 140M in our comparison article.

Cat M Series Motor Graders in Action

Disclaimer: The motor grader in this clip may be an overseas model. The Australian model may vary from above.

M Series Specs Overview

140M 12M 14M 16M3 18M3
Net Base Power 183 HP 259 HP 290 HP 304 HP
Transmission Direct drive, power shift, countershaft
Fuel Capacity 416 L 492 L 496 L
Top Speed 46.6km/h fwd,

36.8km/h rev

50.4 km/h fwd,

39.8 km/h rev

51.7 km/h fwd, 

40.8 km/h rev

Turn Radius 7.6 m 7.9 m 9.3 m
Max Operational Weight 23,538 kg 22,045 kg 29,834 kg 38,500 kg

Tested max

Moldboard Width 3.7 m 4.3 m 4.9 m 5.5 m
Moldboard Height 610 mm 688 mm 787 mm
Max Depth of Cut 715 mm 438 mm 470 mm
Blade Pull at Max Weight 14,405 kg 13,685 kg 18,352 kg 23,985 kg

Caterpillar Grader M Series Price

Machines4U data shows the prices of Caterpillar M series graders depends on the condition, age and attachments on the machine.

Pros and Cons of the Cat M Series Graders

All machines have their pros and cons, so we’ve compiled some of the main factors to consider when looking at the Cat grader M series.


  • Cross slope technology—this optional feature allows operators to maintain accurate cross slopes by automatically controlling one side of the blade.
  • Stable blade—according to anecdotal feedback this is another optional feature that users love. The stable blade system detects bounce and reduces engine rpm as required to stabilise the machine and produce accurate grading.
  • ACERT engine—everyone loves more power and the M series delivers with the ACERT engine. Plus these grades feature engine idle shutdown to save fuel and reduce emissions.
  • Cab options—the M series graders offer high visibility and operator comfort with sloped rear windows to make viewing the moldboard and behind the machine easy. The optional reverse camera also enhances visibility.
  • Improved serviceability—these Cat motor graders feature extended service intervals and grouped service points to save on maintenance time and cost.

Things to Consider

  • Expensive to buy—depending on the model the M series graders can be expensive to buy with the price ranging from $110,000 to $550,000*.
  • Steering—anecdotal feedback states steering with joystick controls over a wheel can be tricky and takes some getting used to. Operators note that if you have operated an older grader model, you may find the new graders hard to manoeuver efficiently.
  • Electrical faults—some operators found that earlier models of the M series suffered from GPS signal loss when working in areas with lots of trees. However this may have been resolved with tech upgrades.
  • Transmission shifting—anecdotal feedback notes difficulty when shifting and finding the correct gears during operation. Some operators mention a clunky shift, while others say there is a lag from the systems computer which causes a delay and slows productivity. These may be isolated issues.
  • Maintenance—with all of the technology in these Cat graders, it’s no surprise that they require updates and calibration (as most advanced machines these days). Many users note that only a Cat technician can update or calibrate the machine.

So, there you have it, the Cat grader M series. What do you think? Let us know your experiences in the comments below. Take a look at Cat graders available for sale and at auction.

Sources: Heavy Equipment Forum, www.cat.com, Cat grader M model brochures

*Prices are based on Machines4U listing data provided by sellers/advertisers and are an approximation only. Data is correct up to and at the time of publishing. Prices may change and need to be verified with individual sellers.

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