When Metabo launched their “Li-Power” lithium-ion battery line earlier this year, they designed it to interface with their existing tools — provided they’re part of the group that utilizes the company’s air-cooled battery system. Since the “Li-Power” announcement, they’ve been creating and releasing different sized Li-Ion batteries for use in each of the associated tool lines. Now, they’re offering their 18V BSZ 18 for sale already bundled with the Li-Power 20 series battery and charger.
The BSZ 18 is already a capable drill/driver, capable of drilling up to 1/2″ holes in mild steel and up to 1-3/16″ holes in wood, and offering 20 torque settings — as well as a drill setting. It features a 1/2″ keyless chuck and a spindle lock to “allow one handed bit changes,” according to Metabo. Weighing in at 4.85 lbs, the BSZ 18 — in either NiCd or Li-Ion form — is quite powerful, producing a whopping 549 in-lbs of torque.
The addition of the Li-Power battery brings a 30% faster charge, a service life of up to 1,500 charges, and the capability to store the tool for up to 18 months without losing a charge. Considering just torque specs and battery power, the Li-Powered BSZ 18 lands square in competition with Milwaukee’s V18.
A quick Froogle search returned a street price of around $345 for the Li-Powered version of the BSZ 18, versus $240 for the standard NiCd kit. Of course, it’s up to you as to whether the li-ion additional runtime and shelf life justifies the $100 price jump.