Linde has marked a major milestone with the 111,111th of its widely acclaimed 386 electric forklift truck recently leaving the production line in Germany, confirming it as the most manufactured forklift of its kind.
Since its introduction in 2006 the Linde 386 series has become a material handling equipment icon because of its unrivalled versatility and near legendary reliability. Demand for the truck has been enormous since the first E12-20 electric forklift trucks of the 386 series were launched. With its overhead tilt cylinders, decoupled chassis and lift mast, as well as a comprehensive ergonomics concept, the 386 series is even set to top the success of the previous model, the 335 series.
Linde had previously established its reputation in the combustion engine sector, with hydrostatics deeply embedded in Linde’s DNA. “Nevertheless, the signs of change emerged,” says developer Wolfgang Hock, who drove the start of Linde electric forklift production. “Our customers clearly asked for an ‘E’ product from Linde, which as a similar performance to a ‘V’ product, but that is free of emissions. “The fact that the truck has been producing a steep sales curve for eleven years proves that our concept has been and is just right.”
Linde 386 series features that ensure high electric forklift performance include two-engine front-wheel drive, which provides excellent traction control on gradients and the combination steering axle of the 4-wheel variant, which almost allows for turning in position and within the truck contours. The decoupled 386 series cab largely prevents the transmission of vibrations to the driver and the on-board charger provides extremely easy battery charging. Since 2016 an additional lithium-ion battery version has increased the series’ popularity and performance across an unrivalled model variety of 30 variants which all have extensive safety features as part of their basic design.
This combination of features means that the 386 electric forklift can be used anywhere – whether it be in the transport and logistics sector, in automotive and mechanical engineering or in the processing industry. The 386 series from the Linde Aschaffenburg plant in Germany is used all over the world, establishing an unparalleled reputation for reliability, with the need for attention outside of scheduled maintenance extremely rare.
“I am proud that Linde manufactures the world’s most successful electric forklift truck series. We will do everything to keep it that way in the future!”
Alexander Herberich, a Linde employee who took part in the start of 386 series production in 2006 recalled the workforce’s coming to terms with the then unusual equipment.
“First of all, we had to familiarise ourselves with this completely new truck type,” he said. “The hand grips were completely different from the other product lines. Today, however, we are on first-name terms with every screw,” he says with a chuckle.
Andreas Krinninger, Chairman of the management board of Linde Material Handling, commented that Linde had rapidly developed into a solutions provider for goods handling. “This does not alter the central importance of the forklift for our business,” he said. “We continue to put our entire expertise and our full passion into this. I am proud that Linde manufactures the world’s most successful electric forklift truck series. We will do everything to keep it that way in the future!”