Makita FD05R1 12V Max CXT Lithium-Ion Cordless Driver Drill Review

For those who are looking to buy a driver drill, let’s get to know the Makita FD05R1. You’ve probably seen or heard about it as this specific model is rather famous and known as one of the most successful units of the brand.

You get the kit that includes two 12V CXT lithium-ion batteries along with the prescribed charger. This ultra-compact tool may not look it but it delivers a decent punch that can take on any of your low to mid-range driving, fastening and drilling operations.

One word of warning before diving in: this isn’t the tool that you can entrust heavy duty projects to. It functions best when used within its limits and can even blow you away with how efficient it is at completing the tasks at hand.

Makita FD05R1 12V Max CXT Lithium-Ion Cordless Driver-Drill Kit, 3/8"


  • Reduces operator fatigue at only 2.4 lbs.
  • Comes with a 3-year limited warranty
  • Designed with a 3/8-inch keyless chuck for easy bit changes
  • Powered by Battery Protection Circuit
  • Has a LED battery charge level indicator
  • Delivers 250 in. lbs. of max torque
  • Covers a wide range of applications with its variable two-speed design


  • Not compatible with 12V Max pod-style accessories
  • Can’t handle heavy duty projects

Ergonomically Designed for Ease of Use

Makita FD05R1 12V Max CXT Lithium-Ion Cordless Driver-Drill Kit, 3/8"Made in a compact size of 7.16-inches long, the Makita FD05R1 was designed with your comfort in mind. Weighing only 2.4 lbs., you can use this tool day in and day out without encountering the slightest bit of fatigue. Its handle is made of rubberized soft grip that makes handling and carrying it secure and slip-free. It is small enough to fit in tight spaces and its built-in LED light helps brighten up dark areas.

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This tool is powered by 12V Max CXT lithium-ion 2.0Ah batteries that come with an integrated LED charge level indicator. If you have the 4.0Ah variant available, it is compatible with this drill and can provide it with a longer run time. Both the 2.0Ah and the 4.0Ah are crafted with Battery Protection Circuit technology that prevents untoward incidences like overheating, overloading, and over-discharging.  Either battery slides at the bottom and enables the tool to stand on its own.

Perfect for Low to Mid-Range Tasks

The FD05R1 comes with Makita’s popular variable two-speed design at 0-450 RPM and 0-1700 RPM and allows you to shift settings whenever you want without the threat of incurring damage. While it is advised to avoid frequently switching between speeds, this tool is the exception. This feature allows you to cover a variety of applications with the help of its 250 in. lbs. of max torque. It comes with 18 clutch settings and a convenient 3/8-inch keyless chuck capacity for steel and 3/16-inch for wood.

Comes with Limited 3-Year Warranty

Makita prides itself in thoroughly inspecting each and every tool, accessory and basically every product that bears its brand before they hit the shelves. If you find yourself disappointed and dissatisfied with the performance of your purchase, you are guaranteed a 30-day return or replace option. This is why you have to make sure that you take your tools out of their cases and actually test them out. This will save you the hassle of having to deal with defective products when the time comes that you really need to use them.

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If you miss this period and you find your tools suffering from malfunctions or decrease in quality within three years upon the date of purchase,  you can send them along with the battery and charger to any of the Authorized Service Centers or to their factory. This three-year protection, however, does not apply to the accessories and can be voided when found that tools have been attempted to be repaired by unauthorized technicians or that you’ve used fake batteries.

Limited Compatibility with Attachments and Accessories

Makita FD05R1 12V Max CXT Lithium-Ion Cordless Driver-Drill Kit, 3/8"

While there are third-party batteries and chargers that are compatible with Makita products, and you can opt to use them to save on costs, this can lead you to forfeit the three-year warranty that covers the tool and even cause it to incur damages. Hence, regardless if you have compatible options available, it could lead to more harm than good. Also, if you have access to Makita 12V max pod-style accessories and even batteries and chargers, these can’t be used on the FD05R1 as well.

Comparison with Makita XPH012 and XPH07Z

This driver drill belongs to the CXT line, and while it is famous in its own right, it’s no match to the power of the XPH012 and XPH07Z. While this tool has a max torque of 250 in. lbs. and can perfectly handle the this and thats of everyday use, it pales in comparison to the XPH012’s 490 and the XPH07Z’s 1,090. With the max torques figures alone, you can determine which tools will be perfect for every level of power tool aficionado. If you’re a beginner or can foresee minimal use of the drill, then the FD05R1 is definitely the best option.

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Another difference is the batteries that each line uses. While the CXTs are covered by the Battery Protection Circuit, the XPH line comes with the Star Protection Computer Control technology. While both innovations allow for smarter and self-preserving tools, batteries that come with the star sign have better energy regulating capabilities that offer longer run time.

Makita FD05R1 12V Max CXT Lithium-Ion Cordless Driver-Drill Kit, 3/8"


If you are just dipping your toe in the water and need a product that requires little maintenance or maybe you have a workhorse tool at your disposal and want a smaller, lighter version, then the FD05R1 definitely warrants the consideration. It was made with comfort, balance, and efficiency in mind that even amateurs won’t get threatened to go near it. Ideal for low to mid-range projects like making frames and interior decorating small spaces, this tool can breeze you through it. When you decide to purchase this tool, you’re automatically indoctrinated into a community of very satisfied customers who were able to improve their lives with this affordable and ergonomic tool. It’s versatile for both male and female hands and can readily manage your everyday projects.