JCB’s new 403 Plus compact wheeled loader.

JCB has launched a new ultra-compact wheeled loader with double the power of the current model. The JCB 403 Plus mirrors the size and layout of the current 25hp 403 Smart Power, but draws on a 50hp engine and 60 lit/min hydraulics to tackle more demanding work and deliver greater productivity.

JCB Agriculture Managing Director John Smith said the 403 was by far the smallest machine in the company’s range of agricultural wheeled loaders, but the new Plus version had a power-to-weight ratio equivalent to the biggest machines.

“Its small size and nimble manoeuvrability make it ideal for work in and around buildings,” he added, “and it’s also a very grown-up machine with a proven powertrain incorporating heavy-duty axles and optional 100 per cent locking diffs front and rear.

“A fully-equipped cab with an interior that matches the high standards of design, fit and finish of our bigger loaders, completes the package; it’s a great addition to our range and one that emphasises the breadth of choice of agricultural materials handling machines offered by JCB in this area.”

Within an overall width of just 1.10m on narrow tyres, the JCB 403 Plus packs in a 1.7-litre 50hp engine equipped with JCB Autostop to shut down the engine if left idling for a time-adjustable period to avoid using up fuel unnecessarily.

In addition, JCB LiveLink telemetry is installed on the new Plus model to help keep the machine secure, encourage timely service scheduling and provide remote location, fault early warning alerts and operational records.

The new 50hp JCB 403 Plus is powered by a 50hp 1.7-litre engine.

The JCB 403 Plus model’s hydrostatic transmission comes in 20km/hr and 30km/hr versions, and a 60 lit/min gear pump provides oil for the articulated chassis steering, lift arms and front-end attachments.

An auxiliary circuit to operate attachments such as a muck grab also provides constant flow to drive a hydraulic motor on equipment such as feed buckets; flow can be controlled using a regular lever valve or the optional electric control on the loader’s joystick.

Up front, buyers have a choice of lift arm sizes – the standard version provides a good all round combination of breakout force, lift capacity and a load-over height of 2.6m, while the extended option takes load-over height to 2.8m for stacking and loading.

Both designs are patented for the way stresses are dissipated throughout the chassis and both give true parallel lift – ideal for handling with pallet forks and to minimise spillage of loose materials from a bucket.

Four different quick hitch couplings with hydraulic pin locking from the driver’s seat cater for new or existing attachments on the farm.

The extended front arm option gives a maximum lift height of 2.8m.

There’s a three-way choice of operator accommodation: a fixed canopy with front and rear windscreens provides easiest access for operators who need to frequently hop on and off their machine, while the fully-glazed cab provides the ultimate comfort with full weather and safety protection, a heater/demister unit and front and rear windscreen wash/wipe.

Overall height is 2.20m with these options; for access to buildings with low doorways, roof trusses or ceilings, JCB’s unique folding FOPS/ROPS canopy can be lowered in only 40 seconds to reduce that to just 1.84m while still providing shelter from rain when in the raised position thanks to glass panels in the top of the frame.

When it comes to daily checks and routine servicing, the one-piece hood of the JCB 403 Plus opens rearwards to give clear access to both sides of the engine bay, where the air filter, battery, fluid reservoirs and electrics are housed.

Together with the engine coolant radiator, these components are all protected by a cast counterweight styled to match the bigger machines in JCB’s comprehensive wheeled loader range, while also housing recessed light clusters.

A new towing option is available with clevis and 50mm ball hitches, both with a capacity of 750kg, while tyre options include narrow fitments that keep overall width to a minimum but can be flipped to provide a wider stance, and more substantial agricultural pattern sizes for best traction.

JCB 403 specification
Smart Power Plus
Engine 1.5-litre 25hp 1.7-litre 50hp
Transmission Single-range hydrostatic
Speed 20km/hr 20 or 30km/hr
Hydraulics 43 lit/min 60 lit/min
Payload 575kg 616kg
Weight 2,682kg 2,711kg