Metabo is an under-the-radar manufacturer of corded and cordless power tools, but their products are known for their exceptional quality.
Many of their tools are made in Germany, and overall their tools are just as, if not more powerful, more versatile, and more capable than tools made by the Porter Cable brand, DeWalt, Milwaukee, and other leading tool manufacturers.
In this Metabo tool review, I’ll explore if these tools are worth your money and how they stack up against others. Let’s dig in!
- Metabo tools are known for their quality, performance, capabilities, and dependability.
- This German tool manufacturer specializes in manufacturing professional-grade tools, like hammer and impact drills, jigsaws and circular saws, sanders and grinders, and metalworking equipment.
- Since their products utilize high-grade components and boast superior workmanship, they can be more expensive than other power tool brands.
Metabo Tools History
Founded in 1923 by Albrecht Schnizler as Schnizler GmbH, Metabo is a German power tool manufacturer based in Nürtingen, Germany.
The company is named after a hand drill it produced in the 1920s, the “Metallbohrdreher”, but it didn’t get its current name until 1932.
The company’s manufacturing capacity was devastated during WWII, but by 1948 they’d reconstructed damaged plants, storage facilities, etc.
In 1953, the company expanded, moving its headquarters and opening a new plant in Nürtingen’s industrial zone.
Nearly 50 years later, the company—now known as Metabo Group—would acquire Elektra Beckum, a manufacturer that operated in Meppen, Germany.
After this acquisition and two others, Metabo Group was the second largest producer of stationary woodworking machines in the world, but only briefly.
In the early 2000s, the company shifted its focus to smaller power tools. They opened a production center in Shanghai in 2004.
Six years later, after the integration of Elektra Beckum was complete, they got rid of their plant in Meppen.
In March 2016, Hitachi acquired Metabo. A year later it was sold to HK Holdings Co., which belongs to the American investment firm Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co.
Today, the company is still wholly owned by KKR.
At present, Metabo is a medium-sized company that makes tools for metalworkers, woodworkers, and general craftspersons.
Their tools are manufactured in Nürtingen and Shanghai, and they work with 23 distribution centers as well as more than 100 importers.
Are Metabo Tools Good?
Yes, Metabo tools are good tools and worth your money. They are similar quality to other reputable brands like DeWalt tools, Milwaukee, Makita, and others.
Pros of Metabo Tools
Metabo tools are made with durable materials, so you can expect them to last a long time (if they’re maintained properly).
Even if your tools are used exclusively for heavy-duty materials, they’ll perform well over the long term, thanks in large part to their durable components and superior manufacturing techniques.
Other brands make durable tools—DeWalt comes to mind—but Metabo products are a step above the rest in terms of durability, mainly because a large portion of their products are metalworking tools.
Whether you’re talking about their drills, angle grinders, saws, impact drivers, or sanders, you’re talking about tools that can consistently achieve precise results across a range of materials.
A lower-grade tool brand doesn’t come close to delivering the precision a Metabo tool can, which is worth considering when deciding which to buy.
Since they can achieve precise results consistently, I think the higher prices they come with are rightly justified.
In addition to being durable, reliable, and precise, Metabo tools are extremely powerful as well.
Most Metabo tools run on an 18 V battery, and despite being powerful, Metabo batteries aren’t all that complex, which many say is the reason why these tools last longer.
Plus, these tools can work efficiently even under load, thanks in large part to their powerful batteries.
Metabo also equips most of their tools with protective features to ensure they’re safer, both for the user and the tool itself.
Metabo tools are versatile as well, and their versatility somewhat makes up for the company’s smaller collection.
Plus, the batteries are interchangeable, meaning you can use the same battery for different tools.
It’d be nice if Metabo tools could take the batteries designed for Hitachi power tools, since these are compatible with tools made by other brands, but alas it isn’t the case.
Cons of Metabo Tools
It should come as no surprise that higher-quality tools, which Metabo tools definitely are, come at a higher price.
Most of their power tools are in the $100-$200 range, but you can get them for cheaper on Amazon and other second-hand retail sites.
Just remember, if you get a Metabo tool from an unlicensed Metabo dealer, the tool won’t come with their three-year limited warranty, so be prepared.
You can find Metabo tool bundles being sold for $750-$1,000 online. These bundles usually include 4-5 tools as well as associated accessories.
Metabo may manufacture several high-grade tools, but they don’t offer the vast selection that competing tool brands offer.
Clearly, Metabo values quality over quantity. Their tools are mainly used by metalworkers and woodworkers, but that’s not to say a casual DIYer can’t pick up and learn their tools.
However, these tools aren’t designed for DIYers, and they’re certainly not priced with DIYers in mind.
Where are Metabo Tools Made?
Products that carry the “Made in Germany” imprint are made at Metabo’s main manufacturing facility in Nürtingen, Germany. Metabo products that don’t have this imprint are made at their facility in Shanghai, China.
Even when Metabo was owned by Hitachi Tools, manufacturing was conducted in Germany, Shanghai, and nowhere else.
Metabo Warranty Info
Metabo power tools are built to last. Even so, they still come with a 3-year warranty; the warranty does not apply to second-hand tools.
The warranty covers defects caused by materials or workmanship. If they can’t fix your tool, they’ll replace it for free.
The company also offers a 30-Day performance Guarantee. Under this, if your tool fails to perform properly, Metabo will replace it at no cost to you.
Metabo batteries and chargers are also covered by a three-year warranty. Again, the defects need to be related to materials or workmanship for the warranty to be applicable.
Types of Tools Metabo Manufactures
Metabo makes a range of power tools, including:
- Circular saws
- Metal saws
- Reciprocating saws
- Hammer drills
- Angle grinders
Most of their tools are cordless, but they also make some corded power tools.
In addition to the wide lineup of power tools, they also make all-purpose vacuums, measuring equipment, hot air guns, and storage equipment, i.e. cases and bags.
They also make numerous accessories for their tools, including:
- Cutting & grinding discs
- Jigsaw, circular & reciprocating saw blades
- Band saw blades
- Drill & screwdriver bits
- Multi-tool accessories
- Sandpaper & sanding discs
- Batteries & chargers
- Vacuum accessories
Metabo manufactures three circular saws. The most powerful is their KT 18 LTX 66 BL 6 1/2″ Cordless Plunge Cut Circular Saw.
With a maximum cutting depth of 2 19/32” at 90°, this saw allows for precise cutting whether you use the guide rail or not. The guard even has a viewing window to help with precise cutting.
This saw runs on an 18 V battery and utilizes a brushless motor, so it can produce 2,250-5,000 rpm.
It’s easy to store and doesn’t produce a ton of dust. In fact, if you hook a vacuum up to the saw’s dust sack, you won’t have to do much cleaning after you’re through sawing.
Their most powerful jigsaw is the STA 18 LTX 140 Cordless Jigsaw.
This compact, easy to grip saw has a 5 1/2” cutting depth with wood and a 1 3/8” cutting depth with nonferrous metals.
It runs on an 18 V battery and can produce 1,000-3,000 rpm.
Thanks to its variable stroke rate, low-lying saw blade guidance with spring support, and its pendulum stroke, this saw can make precise cuts in a range of materials.
It also has a number of features that ensure smoother operation, like Vario-Tacho-Constamatic Full Wave Electronics, LED lights, and restart protection (which prevents the tool from suddenly turning on after the battery is changed).
Metabo makes four angle grinders, three corded and one cordless. The cordless model, the WPF 18 LTX 125 5″ Cordless Flat Head Angle Grinder is their most popular angle grinder.
Like many other Metabo power tools, this grinder runs on an 18 V battery.
It weighs 4.4 lbs without its battery pack and 6 lbs with it, and it can produce up to 8,000 rpm.
Because of its compact design, it’s great for removing material in tight spaces, specifically rust, paint, and welding slag.
Its motor is protected by an efficient dust filter and there’s a mechanism that prevents overheating.
Startup is smooth and you don’t have to worry about this turning on unexpectedly when you replace the battery.
The SXE 450 TURBOTEC Random Orbital Sander is Metabo’s most powerful orbital sander.
With a 6” backing pad diameter, its orbit diameter is 1/8-1/4”, meaning it can do fine sanding and remove a lot of material.
It can produce 4,200-11,000 rpm, and thanks to its Power Control System you don’t have to worry about scratching material when this sander meets it at speed.
Plus, it has dust-proof ball bearings, durable aluminum die cast bearing housing, an efficient dust bag, and a sanding pad that ensures easy fastening and removal of sanding discs.
The SBEV 1000-2 Impact Drill is Metabo’s strongest impact drill.
This 9 A impact drill has a max toque of 354/123 in-lbs, and it can produce 2,800 rpm.
Its max capacity in masonry is 7/8”, in concrete 25/32”, in steel 3/8-5/8”, and in softwood 1-1 9/16”.
Thanks to Vario-Tacho-Constamatic Full Wave Electronics, this tool will deliver consistent output even under load.
And since it has die cast aluminum gear housing, its durable and heat-resistant.
Plus, there’s a coated carbon brush bridge to ensure the drill is powerful even when rotating counter-clockwise.
Metabo’s SB 18 LTX BL I Cordless Hammer Drill is a powerful, 18 V cordless hammer drill that can deliver 575 ft-lbs of soft torque and 1151 ft-lbs of hard torque.
Its max capacity in masonry is 5/8”, in steel 1/2”, and in softwood 2.68”. Under no load, it can produce up to 2,000 rpm.
The “Impulse” setting on this drill allows for removal of damaged screws and spot-drilling on smooth surfaces.
It’s more precise thanks to electronic torque coupling and safer thanks to its anti-kickback motor shutdown feature.
And like many other Metabo tools, it has an LED light so you can work in dimly lit areas.
In the end, despite having a smaller selection than other brands, Metabo cordless power tools are sought-after because of their superior quality, attractive features, dependability, and precision.
Even though their cordless tools are their most popular products, their corded tools are amazing as well.