Heidelberg customers quick to snap up new CX 104 model

Friday, June 25, 2021

Heidelberg has already sold 500 units of its new Speedmaster CX 104 – with at least a quarter of sales involving presses with eight or more units.

New CX 104 model includes a quick-change anilox coater
New CX 104 model includes a quick-change anilox coater

Speaking after the conclusion of its Showtime livestream event earlier this week, where the new press was unveiled to a global online audience, product manager Florian Franken described the CX 104 as “the universal press with nice new features”.

“We have already sold 500 units, showing very strong trust from our customers as many have not even seen it in person yet,” he said. 

Heidelberg has been talking to customers about the new model under NDA since December. 

The most orders so far have been from Italy (seven presses), Germany (five), Japan (five), while two long presses are bound for China including a nine-colour plus twin driers and coater, and a 15-unit press in a special configuration. Other presses have been snapped up by customers across a wide range of countries (see below), although no UK orders have been confirmed as yet. 

Heidelberg has revealed where the initial tranche of CX 104 presses are heading

Franken said the other orders included configurations with CutStar, for label printing and for packaging printing with logistics. 

“We have some very special configurations,” he added. 

Pricing for the 16,500sph CX 104 is hugely variable due to the number of configuration possibilities, but Franken said it was around 15% lower than the manufacturer’s top-of-the range XL model.

The CX 104 is made in Wiesloch and at Heidelberg’s Chinese plant in Shanghai. The first series production presses will ship in July. 

As well as Belgian printer Buroform two other test customers have been running CX 104s in the pharma/packaging and labels/commercial markets.

Rainer Wolf, Heidelberg vice president of product management for sheetfed, said the business had also had a good response from customers in emerging market regarding the new products.

“A five-colour CX 102 with coater is really a sought after model on the used equipment market where you can have an attractive resale value,” he said.

“And that makes it interesting for industrialised markets as well to invest in a CX 104, knowing that there is a market in the future which will take this machine.”

Heidelberg has also sold more than 40 of its new Speedmaster CX 104 in China, while the new SRA1 CX 92 is now also available for customers in the rest of the world. 

The previous CS 92 model has proved popular with customers beyond China, including India. 

Earlier this year Heidelberg revealed that export sales from the China had grown to 19%, with a number of European customers investing in presses from the facility. 

Although the pandemic appears to have accelerated the shift to digital printing overall, as customers de-risked by printing shorter runs, Franken told Printweek Heidelberg’s own performance data had actually shown the opposite. 

“We saw the recovery way earlier in offset than in our digital machines,” he said. “It was surprising to us as well, but it was a very clear pattern.”


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