Earlier today, we talked about new HiKoko/Metabo HPT cordless power tools that are launching as part of a new 12V-class platform. Similarly, but not compatible, Metabo is also coming out with a new 12V cordless power tool lineup.
The new Metabo POWERMAXX 12V cordless power tools feature a slide-style battery, and some appealing features and specs.
But, there’s also some confusion. At this time, I counted 4 different Metabo PowerMaxx 12V cordless drill/drivers, some of them available in different kit configurations. In total, there are 22 different kit and bare tool SKUs for these 4 models.
In the photo above, from left to right:
Metabo POWERMAXX BS 12
Metabo POWERMAXX BS 12 Q
Metabo POWERMAXX BS 12 BL
Metabo POWERMAXX BS 12 BL Q
So, you have two brushed motor drills, BS 12 and BS 12 Q, and two brushless drills, BS 12 Bl and BS 12 BL Q.
The “Q” refers to the quick-chuck, a removable drill chuck that reveals a 1/4″ hex bit holder. This means you can quickly switch between drilling and screwdriving configurations. There are also other Metabo Quick chucks, such as a a right angle attachment, for added versatility.
Max torque for the brushed motor drills is 354 in-lbs, and 400 in-lbs for the brushless models, which is quite a lot for a 12V-class tool. Surprisingly, that level of torque is still only paired with a 3/8″ chuck size, but that could help keep the tools as compact as possible.
Maximum “soft torque” is 150 and 159 in-lbs for brushed and brushless motor tools, respectively.
The brushless models are faster, with 0-500/0-1650 RPM speed ranges, compared to 0-360/0-1400 RPM for the brushed motor tools.
There will also be two hammer drill/drivers with similar specs:
Metabo POWERMAXX SB 12
Metabo POWERMAXX SB 12 BL
There are two new impacts also, one with a brushed motor, and the other brushless.
Metabo POWERMAXX SSD 12
Metabo POWERMAXX SSD 12 BL
One has to appreciate the simplicity of Metabo’s naming scheme, if you ignore the number of configurations and SKUs. There are 8 different bare tool and kit configurations for these 2 models.
The brushed motor impact driver is rated at 1020 in-lbs max torque and 0-2500 RPM, while the brushless is rated at 1260 in-lbs max torque and 0-2500 RPM. The brushless impact appears to be more compact.
Metabo is also launching two new 12V cordless caulking guns, which they say can process all standard sealing and gluing materials.
Metabo KPA 12 400
Metabo KPA 12 600
The KPA 12 400 can work with 14 ounce cartridges, and the KPA 12 600 with 21 oz cartridges or foil bags. They both feature a feed rate of 0.3 to 2 ft/min, discharge pressure of 990 lbf, automatic gear rack retraction for drip-free operation.
The Metabo POWERMAXX ULA 12 LED worklight has 12 lamp head tilt angles and 210 lumen output.
Lastly, there will be a multi-functional USB charging adapter (POWERMAXX PA 12 LED-USB), featuring a 2A max output current and built-in LED flashlight.
More details on all the new tools will follow.
I’m really excited about the new Metabo 12V lineup, aside from there being some confusion in telling the drills and impact drivers apart. The model numbering does help with that confusion, but the sheer number of SKUs is a little overwhelming to digest.
There are a total of 42 different bare tool and kit options for the 4 different drill/drivers, 2 hammer drills, and 2 impact drivers, and that doesn’t even include more combo kit options that are sure to follow. The bare tools are self-explanatory, but the kits need closer attention to contents to know which batteries, charger, or carrying case are included.
To be fair, some users might want a lower price, while others will be happy spending more for brushless. With the drills, some users might want the fixed-chuck model, for its compactness, simplicity, and presumably lower price, while others might want the added flexibility and versatility of the Quick-chuck model.
I want to see more competition in the compact cordless power tool space. At the moment, Metabo is putting on a nice show of their new 12V offerings. The inclusion of cordless caulk guns makes me optimistic that more tools are on the way, or at least that’s the hope.
Milwaukee’s M12 compact cordless power tool lineup is king of the 12V-class market, or at least it certainly appears that way in regard to both breadth of offerings and popularity among end users, but there’s room for other brands to chip away at their market share.
I hope that Metabo’s 12V cordless power tools perform as well as they look on paper.
I will have one criticism out of the gate. Why, oh why, are these tools not compatible with the new HiKoki/Metabo HPT 12V-class tools? That might have been a good opportunity for cross-branding compatibility.
Here’s a promo video for the new brushless drill:
The Q model might be a decent alternative to Bosch’s Flexi-Click.
Yeah. Except Bosch if I recall correctly also has an 18 volt “we” can’t buy here in the former Colonies.
Though I’ve never felt bad about my 12v version. The offset hex head is literally the only reason I bought mine.
It’s not often that you can see poor fit and finish in the Pics. The seam is pronounced. It’s curious as well that some of the models do not include a LED to light the work which has become a commonplace feature from most manufacturers.
The drills and drivers all look to have LED lights at the base near the battery.
Is this the year everyone decided to attack Milwaukee’s 12v dominance? Pretty much everyone has the full gambit of 18v tools. Guess they have excess R&D budget now. Except for die hard 1-brand fans, miles of catching up to do before being a threat to the M12 line.
The concept of NOT being a “die hard 1-brand fan” is lost on me. Granted, I’m dual-platform right now because I was fairly invested in Ryobi before I started using tools to turn my time into money, but going forward a tool has to REALLY impress for me to even consider it if it’s outside my core line because I have so much invested in batteries and don’t relish having to lug around a different charger for every tool. Even then I’d rather wait a few months to see if my preferred manufacturer will launch a competing tool than buy into a new system.
This is what the cordless world has rendered most of us: one-color fanboys. In the handful of instances I’m buying a corded power tool these days I’ll consider all brands and buy the one with the right mix of value and features to fit my needs, but if it’s something I want cordless hands-down I’m choosing “good enough” in my brand versus “best-in-class” for something else that would require a redundant investment in batteries and chargers.
Choosing a new platform was something I agonized over for months, reading and re-reading Stuart’s and others’ guides while considering the pros and cons of my options. I ended up going with Milwaukee for my big boy tool set and, after a bit of trepidation wondering if DeWalt or Makita or Ridgid might have been the better choice, given the landscape today I’m feeling pretty good about my decision.
in a 12 v system a 3/8 chuck doesn’t bother me. Hammer drills do though. I would never buy a 12V system hammer drill. I know milwaukee makes one too . . . . but honestly at that point I’d have the 18V model.
Of those products the USB power/light thing is neat – the Q brushless drill I’d be a bit interested it.
and I do think I need a motor caulk gun – some day – maybe.
For the Quick change though I’m going to look at the Bosch first.
The M12 fuel hammer drill works just fine. Yeah your not going to want to drill a 1/2″ hole with it. But if your doing 5/32 or 3/16 for tapcons it does the job just fine. Better than my old 18v dewalt. And if your drilling any bigger than that on a regular basis your crazy to not just buy an SDS drill.
Honest question to you, Nathan (and anyone else who cares to answer): what’s the appeal of an electric caulking gun? I don’t use one all day, but I do have one in my hand at least a couple of times a week, and I just don’t understand what would make a power tool version of this device appealing over a manual one…
All I’m seeing is 4-5x the price and a lot of extra weight, but given the proliferation of these things there must be something I’m missing.
Try pumping out some Polyurethane adhesive at 1000+metres of altitude where it’s got a bit cold in the van/truck, add to that I’m the wrong side of 40! I use the Makita CXT caulking gun, set the speed and let the tool do the work. If you need to use a lot of mastic/caulk/adhesive, it seriously reduces hand and wrist strain (RSI etc).
As a note, I do also use hand caulking guns for smaller quantities or finish work, but the powered ones have their place. The newer smaller models are not heavy and bulky like the old Dewalt 18v NiCad I used to have!
One of the things I really like about Milwaukee’s 12 volt tools is the stick battery, rather than a slide on pack. It really makes for a compact tool.
No one else send to be following that except Bosch.
Yeah, but the are at a crossroads because the new 21700 cell doesn’t fit 3 within the stick portion that fits in the tools. So for compact batteries in the existing factor they are limited to the 18650 cells. The have a patent for 3 18650 cells in the stick and 3 21700 cells in the base for XC packs as a half workaround. Perhaps in the existing compact battery they can put 2 vertical in the stick and one horizontal underneath.
That is a serious drawback to stick batteries – no room for a 21700 upgrade. But if I’m using a tool that needs the extra draw or lifespan of a 21700 cell (given the availability of 3 amp 18650 packs), wouldn’t I be better off buying that tool in an 18v format?
Eric has a point about some people maybe not liking fatter handles, but my M12 tools fit just fine in my ham fists.
I love my 12v Bosch. You won’t be disappointed for close hex bit drilling/driving.
That’s one of the reasons I went with Bosch, and Milwaukee was my #2 choice.
If you go slide-on, why not look at Makita 18V sub-compacts?
Both battery formats have positives and negatives. The stick batteries are more compact, but they make the handles fatter. And depending on the size of the users hands that might be a problem. Slide on batteries take up more space, but they allow for thinner handles and potentially better handle fitment for some users.
The stick battery limits your form factor and fattens up the handle. I have large hands so the milwaukee and bosch system works fine for me – but not for others.
You can make a more common ergonomic handle if the battery isn’t in there too. And you can also make cheaper battery packs.
What I don’t get is 12V. Haven’t we all seen the benefit of 18V???
And for some reason I look at those pixs and it reminds me of the pixs of all the wonderful cordless drills I see on Alibaba and Made in China……
Is that last sentence subtle sarcasm or am I just to sold the value of Dewalt, Makita and Milwaukee?
No subtle sarcasm intended, unless I’m looking at a different place than you intended.
12V = smaller, lighter, less expensive. Makes a different for some users and applications, not for others.
I don’t see the point of Metabo releasing 12v Metabo hpt tools under 3 different brands which are essentially the same thing but aren’t compatible with each other. Why wouldn’t they just make it under Metabo hpt and call it a day. I can’t speak for Metabo because I’ve never seen or used their tools. I know that they supposedly make a good grinder and some decent metal fab tools which seem to be the only thing they are known for. But from what I’ve seen in videos of their drills and impacts, they suck pretty bad. On the other hand Hitachi made good tools. That’s what I used for years before I switched to Dewalt and they held their own quite well. If I were to switch back, I’d look for Hitachi tools. Not Metabo or hpt or hikukoki or whatever the hell it’s called. I’m not understanding what Metabo is doing with Hitachi or why they wouldn’t make the Hitachi tools just like these being that it’s the only brand that is available in stores (or they used to be) and the most popular here in the US? If these are made for construction site use then why haven’t I ever seen them? I’ve seen plenty of Hitachi tools on a construction site, but I’ve never seen a Metabo tool on one.
There’s no more “Hitachi Tools,” they’re HiKoki overseas, and Metabo HPT here.
Metabo is Metabo.
Metabo HPT is Hitachi.
Hitachi was officially Hitachi Koki, which is where HiKoki comes from.
I’m kinda confused… Both in Design and Function, these Metabo tools reek of Black and Decker Gimmick tools. The awful ones, post-merger with Stanley when Black and Decker stopped making simple home tools like the essential Cordless Screwdriver, and started making All-In-One Impact/Drill/Saw/Flashlight kits that practically came with 40 foot tall neon signs that blinked “GIMMICK!!!”
I thought, from the comments on the site before, that Metabo was ABOVE Black and Decker’s level? I thought it was more reputable than this. Am I wrong here? Or shouldn’t we expect… I don’t know… Something more from them? When I saw that “LED Flashlight” I first thought it was an IR Thermometer… Rather disappointed it’s just another worklight. And that USB power source? Seems to have a 12V charging plug on the side… kinda like the DeWALT DCB091 that runs the Heated Jackets… are they going to announce some hoodies or work jackets that run off that? ‘Cause a USB battery pack that runs heated gear AND acts as a pocket-mount LED Light? That would sound more like the Metabo I’ve heard people talk about on the site here.
I don’t know… I have zero experience with Metabo,or Hitachi for that matter. I’ve just been led to believe I should expect more from them, I think. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not bashing the brand… If anything I’m kinda… Underwhelmed? Considering the reputation they seemed to have… I don’t know… I expected far more ruggedly standardized tools, without the extensive experimentalism that looks like they’ve been knocked down the competitive ladder, and designated the new competition for the Gimmick brands?
Are we supposed to be excited solely because someone has released 12 Volt tools to the market, when 18 Volt class tools have become the Norm for everyone? People realize the 18 Volt class revolution is due to the featherweight Li-Ion cells they started using to put so much power into lighter tools… Right? 18 Volt tools took over the Li-Ion and Li-Poly world because we got 18 Volt class tools without the usual 18 Volt Class WEIGHT. We basically got 18 Volts crammed into 9 and 10.8 Volt weight tools… It means we can buy full powered 18V tools to replace the 9.2-14.4 Volt tools we used to buy for small carry-around work… It never meant the 12 Volt class baby brother lines were going to go away… they’re just not as important as they used to be… The delay is all about 12 Volt tools trying to find their… Identity… in among the new lightweight battery systems. That’s all it is, really.
On Bosch and Milwaukee drills, the quick x-in-1 chuck style is a much sought-after feature. On the Metabo it’s a gimmick? This isn’t a new feature they have it on some 18V tools too. https://toolguyd.com/metabo-bs18-drill/ Don’t want the quick chuck? That’s why they have fixed-chuck models.
Modern premium brushless cordless drills and impacts are indeed lighter and smaller than ever. But go back a few years, and they were larger. Smaller and more powerful than 18V, yes, but appreciably larger than today’s tools.
Here’s an analogy. Mirrorless digital cameras are smaller and lighter than full-frame dslr cameras. Next to each other, a dslr might only look a little bigger. dslrs often have better ergonomics. For a photo or two, both can be used equally. But for very long sessions, say covering a tool brand’s all-day media event, the weight and size of a mirrorless camera will feel so much better. No, it won’t perform as well in dimmer light conditions, and will lack some features, but the mirrorless camera will be the much more comfortable option, even offering some benefits beyond greater user comfort and reduced fatigue.
If it’s not for you, it’s not for you. But from where I stand, none of these tools have glaring “gotchas.” They’re compact, lightweight, and well-spec’ed in terms of power, for users who want something smaller, lighter, and less expensive than full-size 18V-class tools.
I get excited about new tool technologies and developments. If I didn’t, this wouldn’t be ToolGuyd. I don’t expect you to be excited, but often hope to encourage open-mindedness.
Metabo doesn’t have strong market share here, but their tools are robust and well-made.
Minor nit: the best camera for low light video is mirrorless, Sonly’s A7S series (but that’s because the resolution is “only” 12M pixels).
I’m not AGAINST this release from Metabo… and frankly you’ve kinda confirmed what I thought… Metabo IS considered better than the crappy Gimmick tools from B&D… What I am is CONFUSED here.
Being Metabo, I have no personal experience with them. So, out of total desperation to get some data in me about them… Yeah, I had to question everything I see here.
You see, it’s not just the exchangeable chuck there that screams “GIMMICK” here… it’s that the, how does one describe the extra detail put into plastic molds to render “Detailed Surface” into a thing? I’ve seen it on toys, but these Metabo tools… at least THIS release… Appear to have some blocky details that serve no function. Just aesthetic in nature, sure, but… Strangely similar to the B&D crappy tools… Which, in my personal experience, does NOT make sense coming from Metabo.
I’m not saying these are bad tools at all… I’m trying to figure out if THESE Metabo tools are better quality than what I’m physically seeing. I’ve seen some awesome rants on the high quality Metabo has here on ToolGuyd… So, my impression of the company is that they produce QUALITY tools, not B&D style garbage tools… These really only APPEAR similar is what you’re saying. That, at least, is a relief to me.
Metabo people are going to love these anyways, I have no doubt. I am just hoping the form factor, the aesthetics, and the potential for expansion aren’t solely driven by the 12 V platform they’re sitting on. I’m hoping they have a major trick up their sleeves that screams “METABO RULES!” or something, and we’re not JUST getting 12 Volt tools for the sake of 12 Volt tools. Personally? I’m a currently DeWALT 20 Volt/8 Volt user, and I have at least a couple DeWALT 12 Volt tools I wish I had. But, I want them because they have an IDENTITY among my other DeWALT tools. I’m kinda hoping these Metabo tools have something similar. That LED USB device has some serious Heated Gear potential, and I’m hoping for more of that. Call it wishful thinking that I HOPE for these tool companies to have some sort of “All our Tools stand out” kind of plan, rather than just tossing the same tools at their most loyal users, and saying “Here it is in a different Voltage… Let’s see if you buy it.”
Somehow, though I don’t know the Milwaukee model naming convention to name models exactly, Milwaukee has a pretty seamless integration between M12 and M18. If there’s a version of an M18 tool in an M12, it is for a good reason, like fitting into tight spaces, or it having some sort of bonus feature that makes the grip, or chuck, or LED light serve a bigger role. The same goes for… at least some degree… the DeWALT 12 Volt/20 Volt line. Metabo has a reputation as having some industrial quality, and I HOPE these tools don’t tarnish that.
Metabo tools have left a sour taste in my mouth. Their customer service/warranty direct with their US arm has been nothing short of abysmal (Declining warranty on a brand new drill due to their manufacturing issues).
They claim to sell a premium product but much of their tools are outsourced as chinese made tools, and very old iterations at that. Example being their 18v Reciprocating saw which is the same thing Ridgid had 3 generations ago! It seems both before, but since the takeover with Hitachi, they’ve been re-branding more chinese made tools.
I’ve been stuck on the Metabo platform because I already have the batteries but do not recommend their tools to anyone. Their tools cost a premium price and do not reflect that in the quality of tool, the manufacture of the tools, the country of origin (only grinders, drills, and lights are german), or the level of customer service. I look forward to moving away from their platform when my batteries give out.
That quick chuck is mighty handy, I had it on an old black and decker, and it is really useful for mounting/installing stuff around the house….saves having to use a second power tool and has more finesse than the impact drivers that are everywhere these days.