Targeting contractors and landowners, the robust design of the 545 makes it suitable for a multitude of jobs. Husqvarna's X-Torq chainsaw engine delivers high torque while cutting fuel consumption by up to 20 per cent and exhaust emissions by up to 75 per cent compared to a conventional two-stroke unit by using pure air instead of a mix of air and fuel, so giving a cleaner burn.
Full of good ideas, the saw has Smart Start to reduce the effort of starting. The centrifugal air-cleaning system contributes to reduced wear and longer filter cleaning intervals. Side-mounted chain tensioning is quick and easy.
Then there is the computer, which Husqvarna calls AutoTune. This provides optimal running by taking account of the throttle position along with factors such as humidity, temperature, altitude, fuel quality and air filter clogging. It tests all conditions every two seconds and automatically adjusts the tuning for smooth running.
Other features include felling marks, captive nuts on the flip-up tank cap and a snap-lock cylinder cover for easy access for cleaning and changing the plug. It is a tough saw but just check out the balance - it sits level and straight.
Engine displacement: 50.1cc
Power output: 2.5kW
Max power speed: 9,600rpm
Idling speed: 2,800rpm
Max torque: 2.69Nm
Fuel tank capacity: 0.52 litres
Oil tank capacity: 0.27 litres
Recommended bar max/min: 20in/13in
Chain pitch: 0.325in
Sound pressure level at operator's ears: 106dB(A)
Sound power level, guaranteed (LWA): 116dB(A)
Vibration levels: 3.8m/s2 front, 3.7m/s2 rear
Weight excluding cutting equipment: 4.9kg
Price: £618 including VAT
Tel: Husqvarna UK - 0844 243 5263
Tested This Issue
- Husqvarna 536Li XP
- Husqvarna 545
- Stihl MS 261 C-M
- Husqvarna 560 XP
- Husqvarna 450
- Husqvarna T540 XP II
- Stihl MSA 160 C-BQ & MSA 200 C-BQ
Darren Chambers, arboriculture teacher and apprenticeship assessor, Bridgwater College; Claire Prangley, gardener, Cannington Campus and Walled Gardens; Jim Doble, Sedgemoor Tree Services; Joe Taylor, Mendip Trees & Landscapes; Mike Cullen, head of arboriculture, Bridgwater College.
Perhaps more than any other power tool, the chainsaw is a matter of personal preference. Depending on the task, different users may want a compact, powerful, top-handled or even battery saw. But with so much choice available, there should be something for everybody.
We put a wide range to test at Bridgwater College's arboriculture department. We look at the Stihl 261 C-M, a popular machine recently improved. Four petrol models from Husqvarna include updated units and the Mark II top handle. Then we consider rear-handled battery chainsaws from Husqvarna and Stihl.
Conditions on the day were warm and sunny. Note: the Mark II T540 XP is for use by professional arborists only and should not be used on the ground. Lacking time to rig up, we gave it a thorough inspection but hope to run it on another occasion.