Cat Excavator Sizes: The Complete Guide

Matt at Centex Excavation
Author: MattPublished: April 5, 2023 Updated: January 7, 2024 • Filed Under: Equipment and Machinery

Key Takeaways

  1. Range of Sizes: Caterpillar offers a wide range of excavator sizes, from mini excavators (1-10 tons) for smaller tasks to large excavators (36-90 tons) for heavy lifting and bulk earthmoving.
  2. Versatility and Efficiency: Each size category of Cat excavators is designed for specific tasks, offering versatility and efficiency with advanced hydraulic systems, fuel efficiency, and the latest technology.
  3. Selection Based on Project Needs: Choosing the right size of Cat excavator depends on the specific requirements of the project, with factors like power, lift capacity, and maneuverability playing a crucial role in the selection process.

Are you in the market for a new cat excavator? If yes, then you should then this guide on cat excavator sizes is perfect for you.

We will provide you with an overview into the various size options, ranging from minis to full-sized machines. We’ll also discuss performance factors like lift capacity and turnaround speed, as well as the differences between skid steer loaders and tracked excavators.

Cat Excavator CategorySize RangeKey Characteristics
Mini Excavators1-10 tonsCompact and versatile, ideal for tight spaces and smaller tasks. Features advanced hydraulic systems and fuel efficiency.
Small Excavators11-18 tonsMore power and versatility than mini excavators. Net power ratings between 73 and 130 horsepower. Suitable for road construction, landscaping, or utility work.
Medium Excavators20-35 tonsBalance of power and control, ideal for larger construction projects. Boast 134 to 174 horsepower net power. Suitable for demolitions, drilling shafts, sloping, leveling, fine grading, and trenching.
Large Excavators36-90 tonsSuperior performance for heavy lifting and bulk earthmoving. Operating weights range from 36 to 90 tons with power outputs of 273-542 hp. Ideal for large-scale projects and heavy lifting applications.

Cat Mini Excavators (1-10 tons)

Cat Mini Excavator Size
Mini excavator working on a construction site.
  • Ideal for tight spaces and smaller tasks.
  • Suitable for advanced hydraulic systems and fuel efficiency.
  • Perfect for demolition and heavy lifting projects.

Cat mini excavators are a great choice for those seeking a smaller, more versatile machine.

These excavators boast an array of features that make them perfect for tackling tight spaces and smaller tasks. From advanced hydraulic systems to fuel efficiency, Cat mini excavators are designed to provide top performance in the most demanding applications.

The smallest models offer 13 horsepower while the biggest engines mini hydraulic excavators can dig up to 15 feet deep. Operators benefit from reduced or zero tail-swing, which allows them to navigate easily around obstacles and in confined areas.

Cat mini excavators come with the latest safety features and technology ensuring efficient operation. The 300.9D model weighs 935 kg and offers 27.3 kW net power – making it an ideal option for those looking for a compact size excavator. With their fuel efficiency, these machines help reduce operating costs, providing an optimal solution for demolition and heavy lifting projects alike!

Cat mini excavators offer superior fuel efficiency, productivity, plus cutting-edge technology features – all wrapped into one package! With numerous models available, you’re sure to find the right excavator for your next project; offering a range of benefits that make them an ideal choice!

Cat Small Excavators (11-18 tons)

Cat 313F Excavator
Cat 313F Excavator.
  • Great for road construction, landscaping, or utility work.
  • Efficient for tasks requiring more power and versatility.
  • Suitable for environments where fuel efficiency and performance are key.

Small excavators are the next step up from mini excavators, offering more power, versatility and efficiency. Cat’s range of small excavators provide net power ratings between 73 and 130 horsepower.

These smaller machines typically have operating weights between 12 and 15 tons. Caterpiller designed these models to be fuel-efficient while still providing the same performance as larger machines.

Cat offers exclusive integrated technology for greater fuel efficiency and productivity. Plus, our favorite part, they have a range of attachments such as dozer blades and hammers for added versatility.

The cab models come with cruise control, stick steer, monitors and air conditioning for extra comfort.

These excavators are well-designed to help reduce running costs while minimizing fuel consumption.

You can dig deeper and faster with less track marks or impact on the environment. This makes them ideal for road construction, landscaping or utility work; they’re easy to transport too, so perfect even for small job sites.

Cat Medium Excavators (20-35 tons)

Cat 320 Excavator on a Jobsite
  • Ideal for construction projects requiring a balance of power and control.
  • Suitable for demolitions, drilling shafts, sloping, leveling, fine grading, and trenching.
  • Perfect for tasks needing a combination of digging capacity and lifting capacity.

Cat medium excavators offer a great balance of power and control, making them ideal for construction projects.

Boasting 134 to 174 horsepower net power, these excavators come with SmartBoom technology for smooth movements and integrated Cat Connect technology for improved visibility, safety and efficiency.

The comfortable cab includes a 360-degree view, air-conditioning, adjustable seating and exclusive attachments.

The versatile machines are perfect for demolitions to drilling shafts, sloping, leveling, fine grading and trenching – digging up to 13 feet deep or reaching 8 stories high.

Fuel-efficient engines help reduce operating costs while quick serviceability ensures extended intervals with low maintenance costs. With the right balance of control between digging capacity and lifting capacity, you can tackle larger projects than with mini excavators while still maintaining ground level accuracy.

Invest in a Cat excavator today to gain access to the latest technology designed to get the job done faster, smarter and more efficiently!

Cat Large Excavators (36-90 tons)

Cat 336 Excavator Loading Truck
Large excavator moving earth on a construction site.
  • Best for heavy lifting and bulk earthmoving applications.
  • Ideal for large-scale construction, demolition, and other large projects.
  • Suitable for environments where superior performance, versatility, and fuel efficiency are required.

Cat large excavators offer superior performance and versatility, all-day operator comfort, increased power, and efficiency, and are more fuel-efficient, which can save time and money.

With features such as advanced hydraulic systems, technology features, and exclusive Cat attachments, Cat large excavators provide unmatched versatility and precision in construction, demolition, and other large-scale projects.

Their lift capacity and operating weights make them perfect for heavy lifting and bulk earthmoving applications, while their fuel efficiency and next-generation safety features make them ideal for tight spaces and longer work days.

The Cat 390F L model is the largest Cat large excavator available. It boasts a massive 86,840 KG operating weight and 543 hp from its Cat C18 ACERT engine.

It also has a 12,230 mm reach at ground level and a maximum dig depth of 27-32 ft. This powerhouse machine is perfect for larger projects and can handle anything you need.

The Cat 532 UHD is another great option for larger jobs. With a 75.7 ton operating weight and 425 horsepower, the 532 UHD is designed to provide top performance in heavy lifting applications.

The 532 UHD is equipped with USB ports, Bluetooth technology, and advanced viscous mounts reducing cab vibration by 50%, making long days on the job easier and more comfortable.

Cat large excavators offer a range of 20 to 35 tons (20,000 to 35,000 kg) with power outputs ranging from 273-542 hp, making them ideal for bulk earthmoving and heavy lifting applications.

With Cat Connect technology, Cat large excavators are compatible with a variety of Cat attachments, offering unmatched versatility for your next project. . With their fuel efficiency, advanced hydraulic systems, and safety features, Cat large excavators are perfect for heavy lifting applications.

Benefits of Investing in a Cat Excavator

Cat 323F with Attachments

Investing in a Cat excavator can provide a variety of benefits. From tight navigation capabilities, reduced noise pollution, easy transportation, cost-effectiveness, and durability to reliability, Caterpillar offers a wide range of benefits that make their excavators a great investment for any construction or excavation project.

With exclusive Cat Connect technology, Cat excavator models can be tailored to specific needs and applications, providing the right excavator for the job.

Cat offers a variety of excavators ranging from mini to large, and wheel excavators, making it easy to find the perfect machine for any job.

These benefits make investing in a Cat excavator a great choice for any construction or excavation project.

With Caterpillar’s commitment to quality and performance, contractors can be assured that they are investing in a reliable and cost-effective machine.


Cat excavators are a versatile tool, perfect for any construction or earthwork operation. From digging holes and trenching to material handling and forestry work, these machines are designed with operator efficiency in mind – allowing maximum productivity on the job.

With an array of Cat attachments, they can be adapted to fit any application – making them a great choice for any project.

These multi-purpose capabilities make Cat excavators an excellent investment for contractors. Whether it’s laying foundations, trenching or clearing land, these machines have the power to get the job done quickly and effectively. And with Caterpillar’s commitment to quality and performance, you know your money is well spent!


Caterpillar excavators are crafted to be resilient and dependable, boasting structural durability, peak performance, and protection from harm. These machines are constructed to endure tough tasks and offer contractors high productivity while cutting down on maintenance costs.

Cat excavators also prioritize operator comfort with ergonomically designed cabins and adjustable seat heights. These features make Cat excavators a reliable long-term investment for any contractor. With their dedication to quality, Cat excavators will last for years – providing contractors with a dependable machine that can get the job done right.


When it comes to your Cat excavator, efficiency is essential. These machines are designed with features that boost productivity, such as lower fuel consumption, blade float, 301.7 CR mini excavator, cruise control, air conditioning and net power weight.

Plus, the latest models come with exclusive Cat Connect technology, which allows customers to monitor and analyze performance for increased efficiency.

Where to Buy Cat Excavators

Cat Excavator Arms at a Caterpillar Dealership
Cat Dealership.

If you are in the market for a Cat excavator, you have two choices. You can go with the traditional route and buy one from a local Cat dealer, giving you access to exclusive offers and a range of models. Or, you could purchase it from a third party dealer which may provide more specialized attachments and accessories.

Before making your decision, consider what job site needs are required as well as size requirements for your project. The right excavator should be within 1-90 tons depending on application. Mini excavators come in 1-10 ton sizes; Small Excavators 11-18 ton sizes; Medium Excavators 20-35 ton sizes; Large Excavators 36-90 ton sizes.

For the most part, a small excavator is more than enough for most homeowners. If you’re a contractor, then you know what size you need based on your jobs.

No matter which option you choose, rest assured that when investing in a Cat Excavator you’re getting an efficient machine that is reliable too!

Get the Right Size of Cat Excavator.

The various sizes of Cat Excavators provide contractors with a reliable and efficient option for construction projects.

From the compact 1-10 ton mini excavators ideal for tight workspaces to the powerful 36-90 ton large excavators for bulk earthmoving and heavy lifting, these machines are renowned for durability and versatility with features such as advanced hydraulic systems, fuel efficiency, safety features, and the latest technology.

Investing in a Cat Excavator is a great way to increase efficiency and productivity on any site.

This makes it an ideal choice for any contractor looking to get the job done right. Whether you need a small Cat excavator for residential work or a large machine for a commercial project, you can always trust Cat machines to deliver top performance.

Frequently Asked Questions

From time to time we’ll get questions about Cat excavators. So we’ve put together this quick FAQ to help you out. As always, if you have any questions don’t hesitate to let us know.

What are the sizes of cat excavators?

Cat Excavator. Sizes range from mini excavators to large mining excavators, offering options to suit each unique application. At Cat, we offer the widest selection of Cat Small, Medium and Large Excavators in the industry. Each size comes with their own specifications, making it easy to select the right machine for any project.

What is a mid size cat excavator?

A mid-size excavator is a powerful tool with the ability to operate between 20 and 35 tons. This makes it more lightweight and maneuverable than large excavators, but still offering ample power up to 175.0 kW.

It is ideal for a variety of applications, from digging trenches and foundations to landscaping and demolition. It is also suitable for a range of jobs, from small residential projects to large-scale construction sites. With its versatility and power, a mid-size excavator can be a great addition to any job site.

What is Caterpillar’s largest excavator?

Caterpillar holds the title of world’s biggest excavator with their 6090 FS model. Weighing in at an impressive 1000 tonnes, this hydraulic shovel surpasses many other models with its 93.6 tonne payload capacity and can fill Caterpillar 797 dump trucks in only four passes!

It is based on the Bucyrus-Erie RH400 and effortlessly holds pole position for being the largest excavator in the world.

How much does a mini excavator weigh?

A mini excavator typically weighs between 5,000 and 14,000 pounds, making them relatively light when compared to large-scale excavators. This mobility allows for these machines to be easily maneuvered, allowing them to access tighter areas.

About the Author

Matt Avatar


Excavation Expert

Matt is a highly experienced heavy equipment operator with over two decades of experience in the construction industry. His expertise covers a wide range of machinery and project types, and he is known for his focus on safety, efficiency, and problem-solving. Matt's commitment to delivering high-quality work within deadlines and budgets has made him highly respected at Centex Excavation and the excavation industry.

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