Makita USA has announced a new 18V cordless brushless motor hammer drill, model XPH14, and with claims that it delivers the most torque in the category.
The Makita XPH14 cordless hammer drill is said to deliver a whopping 1,250 in-lbs of max torque, and Makita says it’s 14% smaller than the predecessor model, XPH07.
The Makita XPH14 cordless hammer drill works on their 18V cordless power tool system.
Makita XPH14 Features & Specs
- 1/2″ chuck
- 1,250 in-lbs max torque
- 0-550/0-2,100 RPM (no-load)
- 0-8,250/0-31,500 BPM
- LED worklight
- 7″ length
- Weighs 6 lbs
Street Price: $319 for the kit
Availability: March 2021
The kit comes with (2) 5Ah batteries, a charger, and tool bag.
Buy Now: Kit via Tool Nut
Buy Now: Bare Tool via Tool Nut
Compare: Milwaukee Hammer Drill Kit via Acme
Compare: Milwaukee Hammer Drill Combo via HD
Makita’s press release does not have pricing or availability information, but we were able to get street pricing from preorder product listings. While the press release talks about “star protection computer controls” and “XPT durability,” what about any anti-kickback functionality?
Makita’s previous extreme torque cordless drills came with a very long auxiliary handle that was pretty much mandatory for use. (Here’s Why.) But with 1,250 in-lbs of max torque, what happens when (not if) the drill binds? 1,250 in-lbs of torque is a lot of force that can cause the drill to twist your wrists or spin around in your hands if you’re not careful.
I’d really like to see all 1,000+ in-lbs cordless drills engineered with some kind of anti-kickback safety feature.
Listen – if Kobalt can build anti-kickback safety features in their 24V Max XTR brushless drills, why can’t Makita offer something similar?
Anti-kickback safety features in a drill shut off power as soon as a stall or jam condition is detected. Without that, all of the energy that would go into turning the chuck goes into twisting the drill around the chuck.
Okay, so with that broad gripe put out there, how does it compare against other cordless drills?
We reached out to Makita USA (a couple of times), and our requests for a review sample were ignored or declined – they never responded.
Maybe they’re afraid of what we’d say about it?
Since Makita USA won’t respond to my emails, let’s take a look at how it compares on paper to one of the most popular cordless hammer drills on the market today, the Milwaukee M18 Fuel brushless hammer drill.
Milwaukee’s M18 Fuel cordless hammer drill (2804) delivers up to 1,200 in-lbs of max torque, weighs 3.2 lbs (bare tool), and has a 6.9″ length.
The latest and greatest Makita 18V cordless drill (XPH14) delivers 1,250 in-lbs of max torque. If the on-paper specs are accurate, that’s a ~4% difference.
But, the Makita weighs 6 lbs compared to Milwaukee’s 3.2 lbs. This means that the Makita delivers ~4% more max torque is ~87.5% heavier. Or if you look it from the other direction, the Milwaukee hammer drill is 53% the weight of Makita’s.
I’m assuming that Makita is giving 6 lbs as the bare tool weight, since it’s listed as the weight for both the bare tool and the kit. Even if it’s the with-battery weight, there is still a sizable weight difference compared to the Milwaukee and other brand’s flagship cordless hammer drills on the market.
Update: Makita has confirmed that the drill weights 4.5 lbs bare, 6 lbs with battery.
Okay, so Makita redesigned their 18V cordless hammer drill to “deliver the most torque in the category,” but is such a small difference compared to competing models meaningful, or was it only done for vanity and marketing purposes. That said, was their previous model ever not powerful enough?
Compared to their older XPH07, which launched 7 years ago, the new Makita XPH14 is more powerful and more compact, but also 0.1″ longer. The reduction in weight seem significant – 7″ compared to 8-1/8″ for the XPH07.
7 years later, and an increase in max torque and decrease in length sounds great, but how come other brands have been able to shave off a lot more weight? 6 pounds seems like a lot for a cordless drill these days.
Or maybe they’re saving their best tech for the XGT 40V Max cordless power tool system?
I asked Makita for updates on the XGT launch, which was supposed to take place in late 2020, but they never responded to those questions either.
Is this similar to the Makita XGT 40V Max brushless hammer drill, but in 18V packaging?
Now, here’s the tricky part. If you’re shopping for a new cordless hammer drill and don’t care about the brand or battery platform, what’s the competitive advantage here? A tiny bump-up in max torque compared to the leading competition but in a considerably heavier package?
If you’re a Makita 18V cordless power tool user, I would say wait to see what comes out in the XGT 40V platform – if or when it ever actually launches – but Makita’s 18V and 40V systems won’t be cross-compatible. So, if you have to buy into a new system anyway, that brings us back to the question – why go with Makita?
Price-wise, the Milwaukee is $299 and you get a free bonus battery (via Acme Tools at the time of this posting), and the Makita is launching at $319 for the kit.
After taking a closer look at Makita’s latest and greatest brushless hammer drill, it doesn’t seem very compelling. Am I missing something?
See Also About Makita XGT 40V:
It’s Official – Makita XGT 40V Max Cordless Power Tools are Coming to the USA
More Details About Makita XGT 40V Max Cordless Power Tool System, and an 18V LXT Charging Adapter
Geez those are powerful drills – but I’m with you, this seems like a good option only if you’re a Makita user already (where I’m sure it’s nice to have a new option). I doubt anyone is going to notice +/- 50 inch/lbs at those levels, but they would notice a few pounds of weight.
Could the auxiliary handle be related to the discrepancy? E.g. maybe Milwaukee isn’t including it in their bare tool weight?
I also completely agree with the anti-kickback tech comment.
Nope dosnt look like you’re missing anything. My 2c which is worth the price of admission is makita is best in thr pack for lower end and mid tier offerings. Their top of the line tools are much more inconsistent than the other big two. With that said I live in the middle ground and have a lot of teal.
The 6lbs must include the battery.
I live in England, Makita XGT tools ore out here, I’ve seen the circular saw and the impact driver and drill, I think an XGT miter saw is coming out in April, they look quite good but expensive
I can’t understand why the Makita XGT tools aren’t in America yet, it’s the biggest market strange.
Why would you think this is their biggest market?
American is the biggest market for tools.
There are no buildings or houses or infrastructure built in any other countries? Europe is a huge tool market, just dominated by different players due to a different style of working. Australia is huge, …
Australia has 25 million people. That’s not very big. Korea is double that.
I presume they don’t believe XGT would sell well and that it would just confuse the market. IMHO 5” grinder is the only thing that benefits. Anything else and 18v or X2 is just fine. Also, have you seen the pricing? The American shopper is all about cheap and disposable.
Where do you get that? I don’t know a single person who buys a tool that doesn’t want it to last. There are some one and done harbor freight tools where you might use it once or twice for situations where even a quality tool would get destroyed.
Yeah, people but cheap low quality tools, but it’s generally people who first start trades or homeowners who might use that hyper tough drill once a year.
I’m tired of this “Americans are too dumb to know better” attitude.
You and I must live in two separate bubbles. 🤪
This is disappointing. I run Milwaukee and Dewalt but still tend to think of Makita as the gold standard on impacts and drills. Hopefully this is some boneheaded marketing rather than a larger boneheaded strategy.
Makita puts quality before power. They have much greater build than most and sacrifice power for durability. Milwaukee does the opposite, they have the most power but quality control is poor.
People don’t bust on Festool or Hilti for having less power than the Milwaukee or dewalt because they understand where the cost comes from. But they throw out the quality and build of makita.
True. The trouble is that too many people shop by numbers and quality doesn’t have numbers attached to it. Add to that reviews of a tool over the period of two days instead of two years. The sort of thinking that says 20 volt must be better than 18 volt 🤪. Perhaps the XGT range is Makita’s way of competing in the numbers game
Makita website clearly says it weighs 6 lbs with a 6ah battery (not included). The batteries weight about 1.5lbs, so the tool only is 4.5lbs. Still more than Milwaukee, and the same as the XPH07, but not as bad as it sounded. I agree on the anti-kickback. That was the #1 thing likely to sway me towards replacing my XPH07s.
If that’s true, that’s still a big difference.
I emailed Makita asking if they can confirm the bare tool and w/ battery weights. Will update the post if/when I hear back.
I’m glad it has a depth rod- something that milwaukee doesn’t have… that said. What i don’t like is the amount of torque these new brushless drill don’t have at low speeds- or their safety shutoff. If i’m trying to mix or drill something big you gotta get that drill spinning before you put it under heavy load otherwise it cuts out.
Yeah my first thought on that weight like said up above is the use of the handle or not. That could make up a lb.
so no battery, and no handle they might be closer.
Power wise – 1200 in lbs is 100 ft lbs. Now where do you consider your hand placement distance from the line of action. (center point of the torque arm). Using the aux handle do you have a 12 inch length to hold on to? Perhaps. so you’d put 100 lbs against your hand assuming a full lock up. Rough order of magnitude.
using 2 hands call it a bit less say 60 ish. I’ve never jammed up a hammer drill but I’ve jammed up a impact wrench a time or to and they jerk your hand but nothing I’ve been concerned with. I hear people break their arms with them but I wonder just how much user error is involved. Not using the aux handle and 2 handing the base handle – I could see that being a bad day.
Might as well have a button that without the handle in place – it blocks out hammer/max torque mode. would be as useful as anti-kickback systems that cut power.
No, 6 pounds is with battery. They keep upping the ante. Where does it stop.
I have the previous model and it is most definitely powerful enough. The trick with the kickback issue is just to use a SDS drill instead. Yes I know it’s now two drills but once you drill into concrete or masonry with SDS you NEVER go back to hammer drill/driver for serious drilling. I only use the 18v hammer drill for 6mm or less plugs.
It is heavy though (old one).
Totally agree. I’ve never even bothered to use our hammer drills in concrete or cinderblock.
In 2016, I replaced my stolen Makita tools with Milwaukee’s M18 Fuel lineup. Big regret. Milwaukee’s One-Key drill, which was replaced under warranty once already, is too slow in second speed, the hammer drill function is ear piercingly loud, the chuck requires frequent re-tightening, and its tech mars the heck out my drill bits. My 2010 DeWalt, 18v lithium-ion drill, other than the torque factor, it puts Milwaukee’s One Key to shame.
Further, I’ve already replaced my Milwaukee Fuel One-key impact driver for the cat’s meow of impact drivers, Makita’s XDT 16 (It’s awesome!). Not to mention that I ditched my Milwaukee Fuel 7-1/4” circular saw years ago (for Makita of course) because it wouldn’t cross-cut anything smoothly and also it’s shoe wasn’t straight from the factory (poor quality control). I’ve would’ve replaced my Milwaukee drill already, but I thought that I would wait until Makita to updated their drill (I like having the latest and greatest:).
I bought a Milwaukee M18 6 1/2 inch circular saw, I looked at the makita saws and I just thought the Milwaukee saws were more heavy duty and better quality I think the Milwaukee is a good saw.
It’s all in the chuck – made in Japan. Minimal wobble if any, and the comfort of the grip/handle. Milwaukee bulky and major wobble in chuck
Sad to hear because I don’t think highly of the chuck on my Makita 07.
Nothing but issues.
For whatever reason and it might be my own Makita bias – I smell Milwaukee bias – MKE makes great tools but I feel like there is a bias in so many reviews of their products and even when tools are purchased outright by reviewers I always feel like the bias exists with the red tools – and I may well be wrong – I am not afraid to admit I have a Makita bias-
Now- Other Makita brushless tools I have owned have had a torque limiter like the Kobalt – I am curious if this one does
The draw for Makita’s 18v range is not their drills. It’s their large cordless range (same for Milwaukee and Dewalt) and the differentiating factor of offering 12v sized and 36v powered tools that run on the same 18v platform. Their drills are a joke compared to Fein, Festool, Metabo and Milwaukee and Bosch (not familiar with others). But they’re functional and reliable and part of a broader ecosystem. I own an XFD07 (hammer-less xph07) and will swap it for the XPH14 in a heartbeat. So, the XPH14 is made for owners of the prior model, that’s for certain. The less ridiculous handle and size are all we need. I’ve had a Metabo for years that puts out around 1,250 inch lbs. Never once did I need anti-kickback protection. It’s nice to have, but cordless/brushless drills already stop on a dime and I think I bound once in my lifetime 22 years ago and never made that mistake again. It’s a welcome replacement.
I thought the XPH12 was the previous model to the XPH14?