World’s Top 10 tallest land-based cranes (update 2022)

By Patrik Eder · June 3, 2020

Cranes belong to the biggest machines ever built. Have you ever wondered, which crane is the largest of them all? Well, your waiting is over! In this article, we are going to have a look at 10 of the world’s largest land-based cranes that are still being used in 2022. Cranes are machines equipped with hoists and wire ropes generally used to lift and lower materials. Their main purpose is to lift and transport heavy things and materials from one place to another. The list of the world’s biggest cranes is based on their maximum overall height configuration. Likewise, all data in specification tables under model descriptions represent maximum numeric values. Let’s find out who holds the title of the tallest crane in the world!

1. Sarens SGC 250 “Big Carl” – 250 m (820 ft)

2. Liebherr LR 13000 – 248 m (813 ft)

3. Mammoet PTC 200 DS – 246 m (807 ft)

4. Demag CC 8800-1 – 240 m (787 ft)

5. Demag CC 8800-1 TWIN – 234 m (768 ft)

6. Liebherr LR 11000 – 222 m (728 ft)

7. ALE AL.SK350 – 220 m (722 ft)

8. Manitowoc 31000 – 209 m (686 ft)

9. Demag CC 6800-1 – 206 m (675 ft)

10. Manitowoc MLC650 – 205 m (672 ft)

World’s Top 10 tallest land-based cranes (update 2022) - LECTURA report
Manitowoc MLC 650 - World’s Top 10 tallest land-based cranes

The last machine that made it into our top 10 ranking of biggest cranes is the Manitowoc MLC650. It was introduced at CONEXPO 2014. The MLC650 is a lattice boom crawler crane and its largest configuration is able to reach 205 m, which is 3 meters more than the height of Trump Tower in New York City. The crane features innovative Variable Position Counterweight™ (VPC™) which allows automatic positioning of the counterweight (400 t) in order to offer the best possible productivity and performance. The maximum lifting capacity can be increased to 700 t using the VPC-MAX attachment. In practice, the MLC650 cranes were used to build windmills in South Korea, tunnel boring machines in Australia, transmission towers in Virginia (USA) or the new Texas Rangers baseball stadium which was opened in May 2020.

Maximum Height 205 m
Main Boom 104 m
Lifting Capacity 650/700 t
Counterweight (Ballast) 400 t
Lifting (Load) Moment 4,199/9,049 tm
Demag CC 6800-1 - World’s Top 10 tallest land-based cranes

The second to last place belongs to lattice boom crawler crane Demag CC 6800-1 with 206 m of maximum height. To put that into context, the Big Ben clock tower in London is just 98 meters tall. The maximum lifting capacity reaches 1,250 t and the main boom can be adjusted to 150 m. The CC 6800-1 cranes are in service in the United States installing wind turbines or erecting steel structures at power plants in Turkey. Moreover, one CC 6800-1 owned by Sarens Group assisted with 15 other tower cranes to build new Ferenc Puskás Stadium in Budapest (Hungary) with capacity of 67,215 seats which started in 2017 and finished in 2019.

Maximum Height 206 m
Main Boom 150 m
Lifting Capacity 1,250 t
Counterweight (Ballast) 170 t
Lifting (Load) Moment 15,856 tm
Manitowoc 31000 - World’s Top 10 tallest land-based cranes

The eight position with maximum height of 209 m belongs to Manitowoc 31000 lattice boom crawler crane which is actually the largest crane ever built by the American manufacturer. The Manitowoc 31000 offers 2,300 t lifting capacity and lifting moment of 35,800 tm. This crane is designed to be disassembled, moved and assembled in just four weeks. Moreover, the 31000 features the same VPC counterweight system as the Manitowoc MLC650. The first model was built in 2012 and one year later shipped to South Korea to perform record lifts at a liquefied natural gas plant. Nowadays, these giants can be seen working at nuclear power plants or sport stadium constructions.

Maximum Height 209 m
Main Boom 110 m
Lifting Capacity 2,300 t
Counterweight (Ballast) 964 t
Lifting (Load) Moment 35,800 tm
ALE AL.SK350 - World’s Top 10 tallest land-based cranes

The seventh place occupies AL.SK350 owned by UK-based heavy lifting specialist ALE. The crane was launched in 2013 and used to be the world’s largest capacity land-based crane until 2019 when ALE introduced the SK10000 crane with astonishing lifting capacity of 10,000 tonnes. The SK350 offers a lifting capacity of 5,000 t, lifting moment of 354,000 tm and it can be assembled by a team of specialists in 4 weeks. The tallest crane configuration reached 220 m and it is currently being used on a large oil and gas expansion project in Newfoundland, Canada. Other SK350s currently operate on offshore sites in Brazil and Texas (USA).

Maximum Height 220 m
Main Boom 125 m
Lifting Capacity 5,000 t
Counterweight (Ballast) 4,000 t
Lifting (Load) Moment 354,000 tm
Liebherr LR 11000 - World’s Top 10 tallest land-based cranes

The sixth tallest crane in the world is Liebherr LR 11000 which can reach up to 222 m in its biggest configuration. To put that into context, the Statue of Liberty is just 93 m high from ground level to torch. The LR 11000 lattice boom crawler crane was launched in 2014 and designed for port handling, infrastructure, wind power and industrial construction. The crane offers lifting capacity of 1,000 t and can be equipped with up to 790 t of counterweight. The machine also features an innovated V-frame with possibility to move the derrick ballast into required position. The LR 11000 has been used to hoist vessels in Switzerland, build wind turbines in Hawaii or construct bridges in Germany and Swiss.

Maximum Height 222 m
Main Boom 168 m
Lifting Capacity 1,000 t
Counterweight (Ballast) 790 t
Lifting (Load) Moment 15,171 tm
Demag CC 8800-1 TWIN - World’s Top 10 tallest land-based cranes

The fifth tallest crane in our ranking is the Demag CC 8800-1 TWIN, being 234 metres high. As the title suggests, it is basically the enhanced version of CC 8800-1 crane from the same German manufacturer. If you wonder what makes the difference, it is the addition of the TWIN kit — a two boom system freely mounted onto the carrier. The TWIN is a lattice boom crawler with lifting capacity of 3,200 t, which is exactly twice the amount of his crane brother CC 8800-1. Similarly, the load moment is boosted and reaches 43,900 tm. The first model was introduced in 2007 and sold to Al Jaber Heavy Lift and Transport based in UAE where it worked in the nuclear power industry and oil refineries. Other CC 8800-1 Twin cranes were shipped to India or Qatar.

Maximum Height 234 m
Main Boom 156 m
Lifting Capacity 3,200 t
Counterweight (Ballast) 1,875 t
Lifting (Load) Moment 43,900 tm
Demag CC 8800-1 - World’s Top 10 tallest land-based cranes

The fourth place belongs to Demag CC 8800-1. The largest crane configuration stops at 240 m. This crane was introduced by the German company in 2002 as its biggest crane at that time. It was firstly named CC 8800 and gained the “-1” suffix few years later due to an upgrade increasing its capacity to 1,600 tonnes. Moreover, Demag launched the optional boom booster kit in 2014, which can further increase the crane’s capacity by up to 90% (max. 3,040 tonnes). The lattice boom crawler is dedicated to executing the most challenging jobs and operates on construction sites all around the globe.

Maximum Height 240 m
Main Boom 156 m
Lifting Capacity 1,600 t
Counterweight (Ballast) 995 t
Lifting (Load) Moment 26,800 tm
Mammoet PTC 200 DS - World’s Top 10 tallest land-based cranes

We are on the ranking podium. The 3rd place in the ranking of world’s largest cranes belongs to Mammoet PTC 200 DS. The Dutch heavy lifting and transport-specialized company introduced the PTC 200 DS in 2011. The ring crane measures 246 m in its biggest configuration. It would be still taller than for example 4 Leaning Towers of Pisa placed atop each other (57 m each). The lifting capacity is also pretty astonishing – 3,500 tonnes. This generates a lifting moment of 200,000 tm! The first unit of the PTC 200 DS was shipped in 2011 from Antwerp in Belgium to Brazil. The first job was to assist at construction of an FPSO for the offshore petrochemical industry.

Maximum Height 246 m
Main Boom 140 m
Lifting Capacity 3,200 t
Counterweight (Ballast) 3,500 t
Lifting (Load) Moment 200,000 tm
Leibherr LR 13000 - World’s Top 10 tallest land-based cranes

The 2nd tallest land-based crane in the world is Liebherr LR 13000, introduced in 2010. The machine’ maximum height is 248 m. It also offers a huge lifting capacity of 3,000 tonnes. This makes it the most powerful conventional crawler crane in the world. Moreover, the LR 13000 is able to work without derrick ballast thanks to an in-house developed slewing rig. This crane is suitable for a wide range of jobs such as construction of wind farm, power plants, refineries or lifting materials at harbours. Only few LR 13000 units have been manufactured so far and operated in various regions across the world, e.g. in the Netherlands, Germany, Mexico or Asia.

Maximum Height 248 m
Main Boom 120 m
Lifting Capacity 3,000 t
Counterweight (Ballast) 2,400 t
Lifting (Load) Moment 65,000 tm
Sarens SGC 250

The 1st place and the title of world’s tallest land-based crane goes to SGC 250, launched in 2018. The ring crane nicknamed “Big Carl” was manufactured by Belgian heavy lifting specialist Sarens. As the model name suggests, the maximum height of the SGC 250 is exactly 250 metres. This is just two metres less than the height of Donauturm in Vienna. By comparison, the Eiffel Tower is 324 metres tall. Moreover, the ring crane offers astounding lifting capacity of 5,000 tonnes (equivalent to 50 blue whales) and a lifting moment of 250,000 tonnes. The Big Carl is powered by 12 CAT engines (each 310 kW) grouped in 6 pairs. Despite its size, the crane offers flexibility and mobility via 360° slewing thanks to 128 wheels that can move the crane along 6 km of tracks. This ability to relocate when fully rigged makes the SGC 250 so unique in its category. The world’s largest crane, Big Carl, was constructed in Ghent, Belgium, and undergone testing lifts at the local port. In 2019, the crane was disassembled and shipped to the UK in 280 trucks. The assembly took 10 weeks and since then, the SGC has helped to construct the Hinckley Point C nuclear power plant. It is scheduled to work at this site for 4 years in a £20 million contract.

Maximum Height 250 m
Main Boom 160.5 m
Lifting Capacity 5,000 t
Counterweight (Ballast) 5,200 t
Lifting (Load) Moment 250,000 tm

World’s tallest cranes FAQ

How much can the biggest crane lift?

Sarens SGC 250 "Big Carl" is able to lift 5,000 tonnes, which is the equivalent of 50 blue whales.

What is the biggest crane in the world?

With maximum height of 250 metres, Sarens SGC called "Big Carl" is currently the biggest crane in the world.

What is the tallest crawler crane?

Liebherr LR 13000 is able to achieve a maximum height of 248 metres thus being the tallest crawler crane in the world.

How much can the largest crane built today lift?

Sarens SGC 250 "Big Carl" offers a lifting (load) moment of 250,000 tm and lifting capacity of 5,000 tonnes.

How much does the largest crane cost?

The SGC 250 "Big Carl" is an in-house built crane by Belgian heavy lifting specialist Sarens, therefore, its cost is not known. The crane could cost roughly tens of millions euros.

Where is the world largest crane?

The SGC 250 "Big Carl" is currently helping at the construction of the Hinckley Point C nuclear power plant in Somerset, England. "Big Carl" is scheduled to work there for 4 years in a £20 million contract.

What size is the biggest crane?

As the name suggests, Sarens SGC 250 "Big Carl" can reach 250 metres of height with its longest main boom of 160.5 metres. Its total weight is 9,000 tonnes.

Heavy machinery shows and events