Makita XDT12Z 4-Speed Impact Driver Review

An impact driver and an impact wrench are two different things. This one is an impact driver. A lot of people buy one thinking it can do the job of the other.

Makita Impact Driver

This website is supported by readers. As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases.


Here’s a quick guide: If you’re going to be removing lug nuts or manning the pit at a stock car race, you need an impact wrench. An impact driver is a handy tool to keep on your belt and can generally handle anything under half an inch, and plenty of tasks bigger than that as long as the nut isn’t stuck in place.

So assuming that it is, in fact, a driver, and not a wrench, that you’re after, how does the Makita XDT12Z Impact Driver stack upMakita has a long history of making great products, so does this one meet the high bar they’ve set for themselves?

Makita Impact Driver

Short answer: Yes. Here’s what you need to know:

It’s A Little Smaller Than You Might Be Expecting

The driver was built in Japan, where tool design is all about handy, compact little units. It offers the power of a driver nearly twice its size, though, so this is a plus, not a minus. It’s an easy tool to tuck into a spare loop on your belt, and it won’t take up half your box like some drivers do.

Makita Impact Driver

The Automatic Setting Is Surprisingly Smart

Drilling screws into wood is like cutting through cold butter with a hot knife. It’s just a really nice feeling. This owes in large part to the drill‘s automatic setting, which allows the tool to actually sense how much speed and power you need at any given moment. We don’t exactly know how it does it, but it’s like having a tiny robot assistant in your hand.

If It Says “Tool Only,” They Mean It

If you’re buying the “tool only” from the manufacturer, it really is just the tool. No cord, no battery, no attachments or bits, nothing. Make sure to pick up any equipment you’ll need, or look for an all-in-one kit if you’re hoping to use it right out of the box.

Makita Impact Driver

Worth It?

The Makita XDT12Z Impact Driver is a very easy tool to recommend. When you pop a battery in and take it for a test drive, you’ll be stunned at just how much power they packed into this tiny little tool. Easy to run all day without your arms getting sore, easy to tuck into your belt, and you won’t spend half your workday chasing slipped screws around.

There are handymen and women who swear by this drill. If you’re not handling big jobs so much as small repairs, basic construction work and so on, you really couldn’t ask for a better impact driver. Light, powerful, quiet, even the trigger feels nice to squeeze. Compared to any old cordless drill you can get a deal on at the nearest hardware store, you can expect the Makita to cut your work time in half.

Makita Impact Driver

Makita XDT12Z 18V LXT Lithium-Ion Brushless...
  • Quick-Shift mode selector has an automatic electronic controller that downshifts and reduces rotation and...
  • BL Brushless motor delivers 3,600 max RPM and 1,550 in.Lbs. Of max torque
  • 4-Speed power selection switch (0-1,100/ 0-2,100/ 0-3,200/ 0-3,600 RPM & 0-1,100/ 0-2,600/ 0-3,600/ 0-3,800...

Last update on 2022-10-03 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Best Impact Driver: Buying Guide

3 Recommended Impact Drivers

Our Pick No. 1
BLACK+DECKER 20V MAX* POWERCONNECT 1/4 in....
  • COMPACT AND LIGHTWEIGHT – Helps prevent muscle fatigue.
  • QUICK-RELEASE CHUCK – 1/4 in. hex chuck designed for fast and easy bit changes.
  • HIGH-PERFORMANCE TRANSMISSION – Powers up to 1,375 in-lb of maximum torque, 3,000 rpm, and 3,900 ipm.
Our Pick No. 2
Ryobi P235A 18V One+ Impact Driver (Bare Tool)
  • Not in Retail Packaging Bare tool only
  • charger and battery NOT included
  • Easy and quick bit changes with 1/4-in quick connect coupler
Our Pick No. 3
Makita XDT13SM1 18V LXT® Lithium-Ion Brushless...
  • Makita-built brushless motor delivers 1,500 in.lbs. of Max Torque
  • Variable speed (0-3,400 RPM & 0-3,600 IPM) for a wide range of fastening applications
  • Compact and ergonomic design at only 5" long

Last update on 2022-10-02 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


This website is supported by readers. As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases.



We appreciate your feedback. Please add them below in the comment section.

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.