Said to be the “final piece” in Komatsu’s harvesting line-up, the 951XC has certainly garnered plenty of interest since being launched last year. Now, it has finally arrived in the UK. 

WHEN Komatsu launched its eight-wheeled 951XC harvester last year, the question on everyone’s lips was – just when will we see it in the UK? Now, we have an answer.

The first 951XC with a C146 harvester head to arrive on these shores was delivered to Scottish Borders-based Elliot Henderson last month, boosting the firm’s impressive machinery line-up, which already included a 931XC and 855 from the manufacturer. 

As a long-term Komatsu customer (believed to be the largest in the UK) and having purchased more than 100 machines from the firm and its spiritual predecessor, Valmet, over the years, Elliot Henderson was the natural fit for the first 951XC. 

Forestry Journal: Ideal for working in denser stands, the harvester is said to be the final piece in Komatsu’s machinery puzzle.Ideal for working in denser stands, the harvester is said to be the final piece in Komatsu’s machinery puzzle. (Image: SH)

“We have heard lots of good things about the 951XC and the C164 head and are very much looking forward to putting it through its paces,” said director Gavin Henderson. “Being pleased with the performance of the 931XC , when Komatsu gave us the chance of the first 951XC it was a no-brainer. With more power, lower ground pressure and a bigger harvesting head, we jumped at the chance.”

Hailed as the ‘final piece’ in Komatsu’s harvesting solution, the harvester – shown off for the first time at 2023’s Swedish Forestry Expo – is said to be ideal for working in denser stands. More compact than its predecessors, such as the 951, it has lower ground pressure, too, so is gentler on the environment, yet suitable for large timber harvesting and final use in demanding terrain. Elliot Henderson’s machine will be used in clearfell sites across the south of Scotland and the north of England. 

“We are exited to get the new machine into the forest and see what it can do,” Gavin added. 

“The machine itself will finalise our range,” Stephen Bellas, Komatsu Forest UK’s chief, said when talking to Forestry Journal about the 951XC last year. “We’ve been crying out for an eight-wheeled, large machine for a number of years.

“This will just cement our range, and we are hoping it will be extremely successful.”

Historic machines are nothing new to Elliot Henderson. Last year, the company took delivery of the 19,000th product to leave Ponsse’s Vieremä production line.

Forestry Journal: The 951XC is more compact than its predecessors, such as the 951. The 951XC is more compact than its predecessors, such as the 951. (Image: SH)

The Scorpion Giant harvester with H8 harvesting head added to the forestry firm’s existing Scorpion, Ergo, three Elephants and Buffalo from the Finland-based manufacturer.

In all, Elliot Henderson boasts around 40 machines, with John Deere among the other well-known brands represented in its line-up.


“We now have a complete range of eight-wheeled machines specially designed for demanding conditions,” Joakim Johansson, product manager harvesters at Komatsu Forest, said when talking about the development of the 951XC. “What’s special about the 951XC is that it combines the strength of a 951 with an extremely compact design. It actually has about the same dimensions as a 931XC and so can even be used in denser stands.”

With “great stability and excellent manoeuvrability”, the harvester features a significantly shorter distance from the centre of the crane to the front wheels (than the 951) and new working hydraulics to better utilise the diesel engine.

And while it has been optimised for use with the Komatsu C164 – a harvester head specially designed for logging large trees – it also works with the firm’s C144 head.

“There are many good examples of innovations that have stood the test of time,” Joakim added. “My favourite probably remains the Komatsu concept, a feature that came about back in 1984 and means that even today we still have some of the most stable machines on the market.”