We get to work with some fantastic brands that are constantly working on new power tools. None of them are sitting around scratching their heads wondering if there’s anything else they can create or improve. We’re getting out our crystal ball to share some ideas of the tools we’d love to see that are also possible as launches this year.
Let’s set a reminder to check back in on December 31 and see which ones we were right about!
Bosch made some serious gains in the cordless sector with the launch of its 18V ProFactor line. A few years ago, they were lagging behind in nearly every category, and now they’re competing at the top.
So what’s missing?
They have miter saws and a track saw, and they have both the battery and motor technology to create a really good cordless table saw. Bosch’s 4100 series table saws offer an excellent platform to build on and we’d love to see that come to fruition this year.
Crastman has been a little quieter the last couple of years but did launch the V20 Brushless RP series. With an impressive depth of corded, cordless, hand tools, and even storage, there aren’t many gaps to fill.
However, they don’t have a track saw at the moment, corded or cordless. We’d love to see a dedicated track saw for woodworkers. However, we think it’s more likely that Craftsman may start with a rail-compatible circular saw first. Either way, those cutting projects that require a higher level of precision will be easier.
DeWalt is another brand that has a massive number of tools and doesn’t seem to have any gaps to fill. Still, there’s room to grow, and one area they lag behind is in the reciprocating saw category. The battery and motor technology are there already. We’d love to see advancement in the area of vibration control and kick up the top-end cutting speed by bumping up the stroke rate and length.
With the Line IQ string trimmer, Speed IQ self-propelled lawn mower, and E-Steer zero-turn, it’s kind of tough to ask anything else of EGO this year. Even so, we know their product teams aren’t taking a break, so we’re engaging the little gray cells to try and predict what might be next.
While we dare not dream of what technology they’re working on, there is one small gap we think EGO might fill this year—a 20-inch chainsaw. There’s only a handful currently on the market, and EGO has the motor and battery technology to come up with a really good one.
Since its launch in Walmart stores, HART has been steadily expanding its lineup both in the breadth and performance of its offerings. They offer plenty of automotive tools, including cordless impact wrenches and ratchets. One increasingly popular tool we’d like to see HART add is a cordless right-angle impact wrench. With the length of the cordless ratchet and the power of a compact impact wrench, they get fasteners moving in areas that are too tough for a pistol grip impact wrench to reach.
Targeting commercial and industrial construction projects, Hilti is incredibly competent across every aspect of the building process. Hilti’s tech team is solid, too, and that group is on the cutting edge of building technology.
We think we’ll see more in the automation section coming from Hilti, perhaps leveraging the Jaibot concrete-drilling robot. Specifically, there’s a case to make for component installation since the integration with BIM is already present.
You likely know Greenworks for its lawn care equipment, but they also have a growing line of 24V power tools aimed at homeowners and DIYers. Be on the lookout for upcoming storage solutions from Greenworks. There’s a big opportunity to create garage/shop storage to hold your lawn care and power tools, along with stackable tool boxes.
Mention Festool in front of a high-end woodworker or carpenter and most of them start drooling. Well, maybe not actually drooling, but you get the idea. One of Festool’s most innovative products is their Domino joiner. This tool absolutely primed to go cordless, and this is the year we think Festool will make it happen.
Flex hit the ground running, taking on the Big 3 and often coming out ahead in performance. They surprised us last year with the well-thought-out Stack Pack storage system as they moved into tool storage and organization. They were also the first to get high-capacity pouch cell batteries on the market with Stacked Lithium packs.
Next up for Flex, we think cordless benchtop tools are coming—starting with a cordless miter saw. There’s an argument for a track saw, but we think the miter will come first.
Kobalt has expanded its offerings at Lowe’s more quietly than most brands, but they continue to develop its 24V line with quality products. There aren’t many gaps in the basics, but what’s missing at the moment is a track-compatible circular saw or dedicated track saw. Kobalt could go either way with that one, but we think that brand is more likely to go with a dedicated track saw.
Take a look at Makita’s 18V LXT and 40V max XGT lines and try to find something that’s missing. The 18V line is one of the largest cordless platforms out there! Aside from trade-specific products such as hydraulic crimpers and cutters or transfer pumps, it’s tough to find a gap.
Of course, Makita could always start moving into those trade-specific products, but we don’t think that’s where they’re headed this year. With the outdoor focus that’s been trending from them, look for a battery-powered inverter. The 40V system makes the most sense because of the higher overall capacity, but the 18V system is so large that we think it’s going to start there.
Metabo HPT has been dropping some impressive cordless tools recently, such as its 36V plunge router—the first cordless model available. We expect the cordless woodworking trend to continue, especially since the 36V tools have the option of running with AC power from an adapter.
It’s a tossup among our team whether the next one is going to be a track saw or a 12-inch miter saw. Metabo HPT has several corded 12-inch miter saws to choose from as a foundation, so that might the easiest from an engineering standpoint. However, I think it’s going to be the track saw. Unlike other brands, Metabo HPT doesn’t have to make separate models for corded and cordless. Sell it as a bare tool, battery/charger kit, and AC adapter kit—everyone gets what they want.
Milwaukee already launched its M18 Fuel Track Saw, so I can’t make yet another track saw prediction (so sad). We know Milwaukee is committed to developing cordless solutions, so we’re tossing out the possibility of coded development for the purposes of our predictions.
There are a lot of ways this could go, but we’ve noticed an expansion across the M12 and M18 lines in the woodworking department. Look for Milwaukee to announce an M18 Fuel plunge router, powered by M18 High Output batteries.
Ridgid surprised us all with the launch of its first OPE line in time for spring 2023. Alongside it, they also announced a 12.0Ah Max Output battery. If we put 2 and 2 together and take a look at the OPE line, there’s no lawn mower. It might be a little early in the game to predict it, but we think they’ll at least announce one by the end of the year.
Ryobi has done some much development on the power tool and outdoor power equipment sides of their business that they’re becoming legitimately difficult to predict. From a cordless track saw to a joystick-controlled zero-turn lawn mower, there have been several “wow” moments over the last year.
There was zero agreement among our team, so I’m going with what I think is the most plausible—a 4V USB Lithium headlamp.
Skil covers the needs of DIYers really well with three voltage systems and corded tools, plus Skilsaw professional-grade saws. What we’d love to see is a multi-material cutter for the PWRCore 12 line. These 3-inch circular saw-style tools have swappable wheels that can cut metal, tile, and more. They’re perfect for a variety of repairs and improvements around the house.