EGO Power Plus Takes the Stage at GIE 2015
EGO Power Plus 56V Line Still Running Strong
Thanks to the team from EGO, we were able to see some of the new and innovative products coming to the EGO Power Plus line of 56V outdoor power equipment. They’re running with the current line to wrap up the season, but some exciting new products are coming. People are still intrigued with the idea that lithium-ion can power legitimate OPE products that replace gas models, and that kept the EGO booth at the 2015 GIE EXPO hopping in Louisville.
Four of the five tools in the current line won Pro Tool Tool Innovation Awards this year, including the mower, blower, 14″ chainsaw, and 15″ string trimmer. Did they have anything new to show off? They sure did!
New Ego Power Plus Products
We knew to expect the 7.5 amp hour battery. Remember the crazy-long 1 hour 47 minute run time it gave the mower in our Lithium-ion lawnmower shootout? It’s now available at your local Home Depot for $379. Like all the 56V batteries, it will work in any of the EGO Power Plus lineup.
EGO was the first to run with the curved battery pack design. Why? It allows the lithium-ion cells to spread out better so heat is more efficiently dispersed. That’s not the end of the story, though. EGO also seals the electronics and internal components of their batteries up tight so that they’re waterproof, and the internal electronics are kept safe. To demonstrate this, they had a mower underneath a sprinkler system at GIE for two days straight. While we can’t share any additional details just yet, the EGO team continues to work on their battery technology, and we know there’s more to come in 2016.
EGO 16-inch 56V Chainsaw
Initially under wraps, EGO also brought out their new 56V 16″ chainsaw. This pushes the bar (OK, pun intended) out a couple more inches to compete well with some other cordless chainsaws on the market.
Two inches doesn’t seem like much, but it’s a move that has bigger implications. The 12″ to 14″ bar length on a chainsaw works well for limbing applications, but can’t really be counted on for much more than small tree felling. Going to 16″ makes bringing down larger trees on farms and larger properties a much more manageable task.
You’ll notice that both models lack true bucking spikes. There’s still some ridging to help control the saw. There is a purpose to this, however. One benefit is in the ability to use more of the bar length for cutting. Some chainsaws have bucking spikes as long as 2 inches—that’s 2 inches less you can cut. Even among the cordless models, you’re still getting nearly an inch of additional cutting length this way.
One of the highlights for visitors at the EGO booth was watching live chainsaw carving. The local chainsaw artist used both the 14″ and 16″ EGO chainsaws to do the majority of the work on his American bald eagle and owl carvings. Some small detail work was done with angle and die grinders. Coloring was accomplished with a handheld BernzOmatic style propane torch. While several people came by with offers to buy the art, EGO was happy to simply raffle them away.
EGO Hints at Upcoming Product Launches
We were able to go behind the curtains of EGO’s upcoming products for 2016. Unfortunately, we can’t share what we saw in there yet—but I can tell you that it’s exciting, innovative, and game changing. You’re welcome to guess what might be on the way, but it’s looking like January 1st before we can tell you if you’re right.
In addition to the next generation of EGO Power Plus tools, we also got to learn about the development process. EGO has about a 2 year development time before bringing new products to store shelves. While we saw some products we’re excited about, they’re already working on 2018 product launches and thinking well beyond that.
PTR Gives Away Entire EGO Power Plus Line at GIE
One of the highlights for us was a scavenger hunt of sorts. Clint and I tossed our picture out on Facebook and Twitter along with the promise of free tools to the first one to find us. We left some crumbs to follow on social media as we went along. We were eventually found by Adam Chandler. The reward for his troubles? Adam got to take home all 5 tools in the EGO Power Plus line up along with 4 batteries and a rapid charger. By our quick estimation, that’s over $1,400 in free EGO cordless tools—I’d say that’s a pretty good day!
We sampled the bourbon, saw Churchill Downs, and ate possibly the best steaks in the country while in Kentucky. The team from EGO was an absolute pleasure to be around. It’s made up of some of the most fun and knowledgeable people you’d ever care to meet. Look for really big things from EGO in the coming months and years. Because EGO is staying on top of both tool innovation and battery technology, we’re pretty confident they’ll be on the leading edge of lithium-ion OPE innovation for a long time to come. We can’t wait to tell you what’s coming next.