JCB is marking its 70th anniversary today by giving employees around the world a day off and also introducing a JCB limited edition backhoe loader. The special unit is a version of the current 3CX super backhoe model and a tribute to the product line that fueled JCB’s growth. Seventy of the special machines will be made which feature the vintage look last seen 40 years ago on the JCB 3CIII model.
On Oct. 23, 1945, the late Joseph Cyril Bamford CBE founded the company in a garage in Uttoxeter, Staffordshire, making trailers from wartime scrap. Today the company has 22 factories, 11 in the United Kingdom, and others in India, the United States, Brazil and China, employing more than 12,000 people.
JCB chairman Lord Bamford said that JCB and its employees should be proud of the past but focused on the future. “Seventy years is a long time, but the past is the past and while we are proud of it, our engineers are really only interested in the future and the products of tomorrow. You cannot rest on your laurels in business; you have to be thinking of tomorrow, the changing world markets and the products our customers need. This is what makes me and all our people tick.”
Lord Bamford, who was born the day his father founded JCB, said his first memory of JCB was his father. “He was an engineering genius, and there was no doubt about that and he was always dreaming of things, and dreaming of better ways of doing things,” he said. “The backhoe loader my father invented was a godsend and started a mini revolution in construction machinery. Today the backhoe is one of more than 300 products we produce and sell globally.”
Lord Bamford added that being a family business makes JCB different. “Virtually none of our competitors are family-owned businesses,” he said. “We are dedicated to the production of world-class products and take a long-term view.”
The “platinum” edition backhoes will come with red buckets, a full white cab and red wheels instead of the customer black and yellow finish, a look last seen on the 3CIII model in 1979. The colorful machine will be equipped with an in-cab coffee maker. The units, with a top speed of 25 mph, will be fitted with 109 hp JCB Tier 4 final EcoMAX engines made at JCB’s Derbyshire, U.K., plant.
Since JCB made its first backhoe in 1953, the company has produced more than 600,000 backhoes and now sells them in 120 countries.