UK rental market on view at 2024 Executive Hire Show

EHS returned in February, with sustainability and the mood of the UK rental market both key themes.

The show was held at the Coventry Building Society Arena on the 14th and 15th of February

The 17th installment of the Executive Hire Show (EHS) was hailed as a hugely successful event by organisers last month, with a new record set for number of visitors for the two-day event.

The show, which was held at the Coventry Building Society Arena, Feb. 14-15, saw 2,056 visitors and 150 exhibitors attend, with sustainability and alternative power on the minds of many attendees.

Chris Moore, publishing and event director, said, “This year’s Executive Hire Show was fantastic, with an unprecedented amount of deals done.

“The atmosphere was electric, and it was evident that our focus on innovation and sustainability resonated with both exhibitors and visitors.

“We’re already looking forward to the next show and continuing to support the hire industry’s growth.”

New launches

As expected, there was a variety of new equipment and solutions on show aimed at supporting the digital and low emission transition of the hire industry in the UK.  

Mecalac exhibited its new Revotruck dumper outside of the arena alongside a number of other machines from its rental range.

Powered by a Stage V-compliant 74hp (55kw) Perkins turbocharged engine, the machine is available in both six and nine tonne load capacity models.

A fully rotational cab, three steering modes (2-wheel, 4-wheel, and 4-wheel crab), and off-road trucking capabilities are also included in the model, while the cab can be easily entered or exited regardless of position.

IRN was told that the machine, which is available globally, will be delivered to customers from February.

On the Bobcat stand, the company showcased the first-ever Bobcat branded portable compressor.

The PA7.4 (7/45) is equipped with a generator option, provides 4.0 m³/min (140 cfm) of compressed air at 7 bar nominal pressure and is available with a range of options and customisations.

DyMac unveiled its SEF-248, part of its solar energy frame range. DyMac unveiled its SEF-248, part of its solar energy frame range.

These include an integral 8.5kVA generator which the company said meets a specific requirement in utility work to meet the demands of the latest fusion welding equipment.

The electrical power provided can also be used for lights and tools together with compressed air for powering breakers and other pneumatic equipment.

Although not available on the stand, UK-based Dragon Equipment used the show for the official launch of its CR450 Diesel Crusher.

The unit, the first diesel-powered crusher from the company, is powered by the Kubota D722 3-cylinder water-cooled diesel engine and is said to be able to crush materials at a higher speed for a sustained period.

In the solar space, DyMac unveiled its SEF-248, part of its solar energy frame range. Described by the company as a “unique plug-n-play solar panel system,” the unit is designed to integrate with the Condor Micro power grid and the Lynx Battery energy storage system.

Available in six sizes, the frame is roof mountable and can fit container sizes from 20 to 32ft. Depending on size, the frame can deliver up to 240v of nominal output voltage with a nominal frequency of between 50 and 60hz.

One of the new exhibitors Xummit launched Sierra, a plug-in light tower that delivers “an unparalleled lighting performance from a robust, 5m light tower.” It has a light output of 112,000 lumens and can light up an area of up to 2200 m2 with an average illumination of 39lux.

Husqvarna’s DXR 95 demolition robot.

It can be paired with its Xummit Battery Power Station to provide an entire night of silent and zero emission illumination on one charge.

The light heads are full rotational and can fold out, while it is also equipped with a rotatable mast.

There was plenty of new products on the Husqvarna stand, including its K 540i battery-powered cutter, which operates on the BLi 36 V battery platform.

The company, which were on the Innovation Trail, told IRN the 10” model power comes with an efficient weight ratio and low noise.

Equipped with an adjustable blade guard and ‘X-Halt’ electronic brake system for enhanced safety, the K 540i was exhibited alongside the LF 60i LAT plate compactor, which used the same battery platform.

According to Husqvarna, the compactor offers all the benefits of a petrol plate compactor but with the added feature of easier starting in all conditions. 

The company also showed its latest demolition robot the DXR 95. Described by the company as its most compact and lightest robot ever, the unit has an operating weight of 589kg and high-power motor of 9.8.kW.

Said to be small enough to fit on a van, the DXR 95 is remote controlled via a customisable and ergonomic joystick that provides instant response and fingertip control including comfortable thumb switches.

Alternative power solutions

The UK is perhaps one of the countries that are further along in the adoption of alternative-power, so it will come as no surprise that exhibitors showcased a number of new sustainable options. 

The UK’s first hydrogen powered electric generator made its first appearance at the show. Manufactured by E-power, the 45kVA Hydrogen Internal Combustion Engine Power Generator was exhibited on the stand of UK distributor Commercial Fuel Solutions.

The JCB A45E is powered by eight 6V batteries, creating a 48V, 400AH operating system.

On show outside of the arena was JCB’s new electric articulated boom access platform.

The JCB A45E is powered by eight 6V batteries, creating a 48V, 400AH operating system. It offers a maximum platform height of 13.84m, 7.47m forward reach and 300kg lift capacity.

The unit has a four-wheel drive and two-wheel steering as standard and is capable of climbing up to 40% gradients.

Meanwhile, MHM launched its Mobile Solar Station-2400W at the Executive Hire Show.

The unit comes with six 400W solar panels and electrically controlled inclination angles that ranges from 30° to 75°.

With a maximum average daily power output of 10.5KWh, MHM said the unit, which is manufactured in Italy,

A solar battery charger and fast connectors also enable the Station to combine with up to four units.

Xummit launched Sierra, a plug-in light tower that delivers “an unparalleled lighting performance from a robust, 5m light tower.”

UK-based renewable lighting and power specialist Prolectric launched a solar hybrid lighting tower.

The ProRXM Hybrid is described as a “solar first solution” that offers a backup option via traditional diesel power.

The unit is fully powered by three 270W solar panels with 8kWh of usable battery bank storage, while a DC 2.8kW generator utilises 0.5 litres per hour.

The generator starts up automatically when power demands exceed the battery charge.

Four multi-directional 180W LED lights on a 360° pan motor rotatable hydraulic mast can be dimmed, monitored, and scheduled remotely thanks to the company’s remote monitoring and reporting software.

Currently available on desktop, the company is working on an app version of the platform.

Meanwhile, it is fitted with a GPS tracker and can look back at 10 years worth of weather data to predict solar performance.

For safety, an automatic mast safety system is also included.

Prolectric said the unit is designed for road and trackside use and can for use as a year-round replacement for diesel-powered alternatives.

Speaking to IRN at the show, Prolectric said the unit is designed to meet market demand for a hybrid product, and represents its first move into the hybrid space having previously launched three solar only units.

IRN was also told that the company is working on a five panel model, with early indicators suggesting a launch at some point this year.

Takeuchi UK introduced its TB20e electric mini excavator. Powered by a 24.7kWh lithium-ion battery that offers a continuous working range of up to eight hours depending on application and environment, the 2 tonne machine features an onboard charger with 95V to 265V single-phase power, enabling the machine to remain operational while being charged.

An optional portable off-board charger supplies 480 V to 552 V three-phase power capable of charging the machine in just two to four hours.

The TB20e from Takeuchi is now available in the UK.

Trime showcased its MGTP 24000/30 THS 3P, among a variety of other products, including the MGTP5000BPS 5kVA battery powered generator.

The MGTP 24000/30 THS 3P Stage V is a 24kVA solar generator fitted with a 48V -24000VA inverter, a 28.7 kWh battery pack and two 360w solar panels.

The range encompasses 5kVA, 8kVA, 15kVA, 24kVA, 30kVA and 45kVA sets.

The smaller units (5kVA - 15kVA) are fitted with four 40w solar panels whilst the larger models (24kVA – 45kVA) have either two or four 360w panels.

Trime said its solar hybrid Stage V generators provide continuous emission-free power (when operating solely via its inverter system).

The unit is backed up by the latest fuel-efficient water-cooled diesel engine which automatically charges the batteries and then shuts down when the batteries are fully charged.

Trime also showed its X-ECO LITHIUM HYBRID tower light powered by the latest development in lithium battery technology.

The company said the tower can be fully recharged in less than three hours which means that in a fourteen-hour cycle, for 80% of the operation, the unit is powered by batteries. Illumination is via four energy-saving LED lamps, which deliver an illuminated area of over 3000sqm.

Tech talk

Alongside alternative-power, technology and software were represented heavily at the show.

On the Spartan Solutions stand, IRN was given a demonstration of its upcoming  technologies that it will integrate into its PHALANX Portal, including its not yet released AI driven photo quality check system. 

The system, which is at the proof of concept stage, uses ChatGPT 4 to validate photos that fitters and drivers submit on delivery, ensuring no damages are missed during the drop off or pick up stage.

Photos taken by drivers or fitters are uploaded to its PHALANX mobile app and then sent to the depot manager, who can ask PHALANX Object Identifier if any of the images uploaded are not plant, tools or equipment.

The Identifier highlights the images that are correct and those that are not compliant, allowing the depot manager to ask the driver or fitter to retake images.

The number of visitors reached record numbers at this year’s Executive Hire Show.

The manager can also ask the system to provide a link to the work order of any incorrect images.

John Glen, chief operating officer, Spartan Solutions, told IRN that the company is actively looking at other opportunities within AI.

Elsewhere, the Executive Hire Show gave Insphire the chance to speak about its new what3words integration with inspHire Office Edition that it launched earlier this year.

What3words a proprietary geocode system designed to identify any location on the surface of earth with a resolution of about 3m.

Thanks to the integration, which was also on the Innovation Trail, Insphire customers can record and share the exact location of stored site addresses, ensuring delivering to or removing equipment from a site with no address is as easy as possible. 

Elsewhere, ABAX UK highlighted its advanced tool tracking and smart inventory solutions. Features of its advanced tool tracking offering includes smartphone accessibility to locate assets on the go, loss prevention and aided recovery to reduce the risk of asset loss and geofence alerts for extra security and control over equipment.

Meanwhile, its smart inventory offering offers  up to 38 hours per year per worker by reducing the time spent searching for missing tools, the ability to build and manage asset inventories to keep track of tools and equipment efficiently abd assign inventory to specific vehicles to ensure every van is fully equipped.

UK market confidence

The overall feel from the show floor was one of confidence, with many of the companies IRN spoke to noting an improving market condition in the UK following recent supply chain issues and delivery backlogs.

Western Global told IRN it is noting an improvement in demand and supply within the UK market, driven by demand for low emissions solutions, which the company said many companies are pivoting towards.

That sentiment is shared by Toro, which described the current climate for the UK rental market as “buoyant” and said it is business as usual for the company, which exhibited its eDingo 500 compact utility loader and electric Ultra Buggy at the show.

One of Trime’s solar hybrid generators at the Executive Hire Show.

Paul Hay, managing director of lighting tower and generator specialist Trime UK said the company has noted a good start to 2024, following a soft end to 2023 which saw “peaks and troughs.” He also told IRN the company has seen a bounce back of the supply chain in that time. 

Meanwhile, Mecalac said the UK market is still challenging, but also noted positive changes within the supply chain and described it as stable. On the other hand, it said production rates had slowed. 

Simon Thacker, sales director, Walsall Wheelbarrow Co, told organisers that the company has noted an increase in business while at the show; “Increased footfall with returning customers signifies more orders placed – a sign of growing interest.”

The show will return to the CBS Arena on February 12 and 13, 2025.

Breaking news from the show floor

UK-based OEM Thwaites announced the appointment of Boss Plant Sales Ltd as the authorised distributor for London (inner M25) and Oxfordshire on its stand.

Thwaites general sales manager, Andy Sabin, said, “We are delighted to welcome Boss Plant Sales into the Thwaites distributor family, we look forward to supporting the business to deepen product penetration in the area”.

Thwaites distributor manager, Paul Rodwell, added, “I am pleased that we have concluded the deal with Boss Plant Sales Ltd and that Graham Stansfield & Jon M Wiseman we’re able to join us today at the Executive Hire Show. I look forward to working with the team to further penetrate the market and drive #dumper sales in this territory”.


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Euan Youdale Editor Tel: +44 (0)1892 786 214 E-mail: [email protected]
Lindsey Anderson Editor Tel: +1 312 929 4409 E-mail: [email protected]
Tony Radke Sales Manager Tel: +1 480 478 6302 E-mail: [email protected]
Ollie Hodges Sales Manager Tel: +44 (0)1892 786253 E-mail: [email protected]