At this year’s STAFDA show in Atlanta, we had the chance to see a lot of cool and interesting new products that are either just currently out, or coming out soon. Among them was a new compact, lightweight drill and impact driver kit from Makita. I saw first-hand how these tools fared and how they felt, and spoke to the reps about why Makita created a whole new class of tool.

The answer to that last part is simple: Like all tool manufacturers, Makita spends time on jobsites with the people who use their products in an effort to better understand the user’s needs and work habits. They discovered that many tradesfolk have both 12-volt and 18-volt tools. They also realized that we most often reach for the most compact tool available for the job. With that, and the fact that folks were managing two battery platforms, in mind, Makita decided to try and bridge the gap—at least with regards to drill/driver and impact drivers.

The result is the 18V LXT Sub-Compact Brushless Combo Kit (CX200RB). The tools are both black to distinguish them from the 12V versions, which are about the same size.
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When equipped with a 2.0Ah battery, the ½” Drill/Driver (XFD11ZB) weighs a mere 2/8 lbs. It has a no-load speed of 0-500 and 0-1700 RPM. While that number is smaller than a typical 18V Drill/Driver (the XFD07MB, for example, runs at 0-550 and 0-2100RPM), it still delivers on power. The sub-compact model will drill up to 1 7/16” diameter hole in wood and ½” in steel (compared to 3” in wood and ½” in steel for the XFD07MB). >hr<

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When equipped with a 2.0Ah battery, the ¼” Impact Driver (XDT15ZB) weighs in at 2.6 lbs. It has a no-load speed of 0-1300 and 0-3000 RPMs and impacts per minute of 0-1600 and 0-3900 (compared to the XDT11Z, which runs at 0-2900 RPM and has an impact rate of 0-3500 IPM). The XDT15ZB delivers a respectable 1240 in. lbs of torque – enough to drive long TimberLocks in 4x and 6x material.

The kit is available now and sells for $229. It comes with the drill/driver, impact driver, two 18V LXT 2.0Ah batteries, rapid charger, and carrying case.