Hilti is pitching the SF 10W-A18 as the first cordless drill driver capable of replacing the big corded drills tradesmen typically reserve for heavy-duty tasks. Rated at 1,062 inch-pounds of torque, it is said to drill holes through wood as fast as corded models and be able to power a 4-inch hole saw through wood or metal.

The manufacturer’s torque rating makes this the most powerful cordless drill currently available. Though it’s worth noting Makita offers a cordless hammer drill driver with a slightly higher rating (1,090 inch-pounds). I’ve run both, and couldn’t detect such a small difference in power. What I could tell is that the Hilti is far more powerful (by hundreds of inch-pounds) than the most powerful cordless drill I have tried so far. In high gear with a 1-inch self-feeding spade bit it blasted through a double or triple layer of ¾-inch CDX.

As would be expected for a tool its power, the SF 10W-A18 is heavier than current heavy-duty cordless models, so it’s not the tool of choice for driving drywall screws and drilling 3/8-inch holes in wood. It’s the tool you use to mix mortar, drill ½-inch holes through thick metal, or power big hole saws and self-feeding bits.

Features of note include all-metal gears, a large side handle, and a 4-speed gear box capable of speeds up to 2,100 rpm. Hilti calls this tool an 18-volt model because it’s the size of an 18-volt model, but the packs contain extra lithium-ion cells so it’s actually a 21.6-volt model. For more on this tool see the specs and video below.

Hilti SF 10W-A18 Specs
Motor: 21.6 volts
Speeds: 4 gears
Speed range: 0-310; 0-510; 0-1,210; 0-2,100 rpm
Max torque: 1,062 inch pounds
Weight: 5.95 pounds
Country of Origin: China
Kit version includes: tool, two 3.3 Ah batteries, charger, side handle, and soft carry bag
Price: $449 (kit); $199 (bare)