HIAB Knuckle Boom Cranes

Hydrauliska Industri AB, HIAB, was established in 1944 by Eric Sundin of Hudiksvall, Sweden. Sundin created a hydraulic crane to move the heavy wood he used for his ski manufacturing company, an invention that gave us the revolutionized load handling we have today. The company’s first model, HIAB 192, used the truck’s own engine as power source, creating the HIAB Method still used daily across the globe. Hydrauliska Industri AB is one of the leading manufacturers of on-road load handling equipment and continues the vision – “to unlock the full potential of load handling as a major contributor to industrial productivity.” Today, the company has around 2700 professionals working to provide high-performance product and service, with sales and service networks in over 100 countries.

Eric Sundin (left), demonstrating the 192 loader crane

An elephant logo emblazons the HIAB headline and is a reminder of both the company’s history and their ongoing strength. The “Elefant” loader crane, presented by the company in 1956, led to today’s “knuckleboom” crane standard. In 1985, Partek Corporation, one of the leading industrial companies of Finland, acquired HIAB as part of their expansion into the engineering domain.  Innovation, service, and performance throughout the years has led them to be a part of many other leading load-handling businesses. HIAB acquired JONSERED Forestry in 1979, around the same time Partek bought Multilift group. KONE Corporation acquired Partek in 2002, becoming Cargotec Corporation. Hiab has been the name for the whole load handling business in Cargotec since 2004.

HIAB’s mission – to deliver load handling products that are reliable and efficient, so customers can run their businesses with sustainable profitability, pride and peace of mind – is evidenced in their ability to meet the needs of national, regional, and local enterprises that make up the their customer base and cover business areas such as construction, infrastructure, distribution, forestry, landscaping and agriculture, warehousing, waste and recycling, and defense. The product range now includes: HIAB loader cranes, JONSERED recycling and forestry cranes, LOGLIFT forestry cranes, MOFFETT truck mounted forklifts and MULTILIFT demountables, as well as DEL, WALTCO and ZEPRO tail lift.



HIAB Crane Models

“Amongst our most popular knuckle boom cranes,” says Lotta Clausen, Vice President Communications with HIAB,
“you find the XS 144 HiDuo and XS 166 HiDuo.” Both of these are universal cranes that fit a wide range of
trucks and are equipped with a remote control. “Being able to choose between various steering systems, HIAB allows our customers to invest on the right level according to his/her business,” continues Ms. Clausen.

The company has a wide range of knuckle boom crane models with capacities beginning at 0.5 ton all the way up to 90 ton, and with outreaches spreading from 4.2 to 38 meters. With consistent innovation comes many models, and to navigate your way to find the right fit for you, the name is a significant indicator. HIAB X, is the evolution from XS, and simply indicates the crane model is fitted with a foldable boom system. CLX models indicate advanced technology (X) on the predecessor, the Classic (CL) series. The number in the model name gives you an idea of the loader crane’s capacity.

You may choose from HiDuo or HiPro control systems, and this will be indicated in the model name as well, especially when purchasing a previously used crane. Both control systems use SPACE-Intelligence Systems that include Over Load Protection (OLP). In addition to Automatic Duty Control (ADC) and Automatic Speed Control (ASC) functions featured in SPACE 4000, SPACE 5000 also features Pump Flow Distribution (PFD).



Hiab Exclusive Features

HiDuo Control System

The HiDuo control system is based upon the renowned Hiab Valve 80. The Valve 80 is a top-of-the-line open-centre valve based on well-proven technique which gives superb reliability. The valve handles large oil flows and provides great precision and ease of operation. HiDuo comes with the SPACE 4000 intelligence system and can be paired with the XSDrive remote control unit.

XSDrive Radio Remote

The XSDrive has been ergonomically developed to relieve you of stress and strain in hands, arms and back. The load indicators provide information for quick and correct actions while work is on-going. There are also a number of accessories that can be added in order to find the ideal control solution for all your needs.

HiPro Control System

HiPro is one of the most advanced control systems on the loader crane market today, delivering speed, precision and safety. This is achieved by combining the CombiDrive remote control, SPACE 5000 intelligence and Valve 91, providing the operator with finger-tip feel when handling the loader crane.

CombiDrive Radio Remote

With the CombiDrive radio controller you can position yourself at the best possible location when operating the knuckle boom crane. It features 24 proportional and 12 on/off functions for controlling the HIAB crane, optional equipment and accessories, all with the same precision.

Company Milestones

In 1998 the Nacka Fire Brigade of Stockholm, Sweden, equipped with a HIAB 520-5 crane, rushed to the rescue of a drowning run away circus elephant. Sahib, the elephant, survived and is just one success story from Hiab’s broad history. More recently Hiab as a whole has been working on responding to environmental issues and one such progress is the new pre-treatment and paint process called nDurance(TM). Technologically advanced and environmentally sound, nDurance (TM) is based on nanotechnology and e-coating offering a unique three-layer protection against corrosion and harsh working environments.

Hiab research produces patent advancements regularly with a promise to continue to grow and provide the most modern product on the market so long as customers continue with demand and high expectations. Below are select highlights from the 70 years of Hiab history.


1944 - HIAB Founded

Hydraliska Industri AB, is founded in Hudiksvall, Sweden by Eric Sundin.


1947 - The 192 Crane

HIAB introduces the “192” loader crane


1956 - ``Elefant`` Loader

The “Elefant” loader crane is introduced, leading to today’s knuckle boom crane standards and aligning with the iconic symbol of the company’s strength and durability.


1967 - Napoleon's Arm

HIAB patents the foldable knuckle boom crane design – called “Napoleon’s Arm”.


1994 - Tiltable Stabilizers

Patent for hydraulic tiltable stabilizers. This technology allows additional crane install configurations.


2014 - 70th Anniversary

HIAB celebrates their 70th anniversary. To celebrate, they launch the X-HiDuo 188 and X-Hipro 192 limited edition knuckle boom crane models.

Q&A with Hydrauliska Industri AB

What are some of your company’s features that make the brand stand out from the rest of your competitors?

Knuckleboom Trader


From a company point of view: Hiab is the world’s leading provider of on-road load handling equipment. Customer satisfaction is the first priority for us. Around 2,700 professionals at Hiab work to provide high-performance products and services with operations and a sales and service network in more than 100 countries. Regarding our products their combination of control, life cycle cost, safety and reliability is one no other loader crane can match.

Hydrauliska Industri AB


What are Hiab’s most popular knuckle boom crane models?

Knuckleboom Trader


Amongst our most popular knuckle boom cranes you find the XS 144 HiDuo and XS 166 HiDuo, These are two examples of universal cranes that fit a wide range of trucks. It is equipped with a remote control that is ergonomically designed for a healthy work position, and allows the driver to place him/herself in order to get a good overview when working. – In general Hiab has a wide range of crane models evenly spread out through the capacity ranges beginning at 0,5tm all the way up to 90 tm and with outreaches spreading from 4,2 to 38 meters.

Hydrauliska Industri AB


What is the most creative use of a HIAB crane that you have seen?

Knuckleboom Trader


An Elephant Rescues an Elephant  Imagine a calm and refreshing swim on a hot summers day. Imagine yourself as an escaped circus elephant – huge, grey, curious, weighing about five tons, looking to cool off in what appears to be a sweet and shallow canal – without knowing how to swim! – All of this happened to the elephant Sahib in the summer of 1998 in Stockholm, Sweden. When the Nacka Fire Brigade – equipped with a HIAB 520-5 crane – got the call, the fire engine’s driver Stefan Wesley said to his team: “You’re being called out to rescue an elephant! No kidding!”. When finally rescued, Sahib blew a fanfare, celebrating his rescuers. Minding that, it is quite a coincidence that Hiab uses an elephant as its logo.

Hydrauliska Industri AB


Heavy Lifts Below Zero – Antarctica. The winters here are brutal. In 1998, an iceberg half the size of Jamaica broke loose and started drifting. Unfortunately it had parts of the German research base Neumayer still left on it. A clean-up expedition was sent out to collect what was left. Three PistenBully-machines equipped with HIAB cranes were dispatched. Ten days later all the material and machines had been safely removed. Life went back to normal.

Hydrauliska Industri AB


Reducing environmental impact is a big issue in the construction and transportation industries. What is the company doing to reduce their environmental impact?

Knuckleboom Trader


The new painting process nDurance(TM) used in Hiab’s new multi-assembly unit Stargard, which was officially opened on 23 September, sets a new industry standard. nDurance(TM) is a technologically advanced and environmentally sound pre-treatment and paint process based on nanotechnology and e-coating. It offers a unique three-layer protection against corrosion and harsh working environments – the industry’s best hi-tech protection.

Hydrauliska Industri AB


HIAB Image Gallery

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