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Automatic fuel savings with Allison-equipped car transporter

Automatic transmission equipped Renault saves two litres per 100km fuel without diminishing the car transporter's payload capacity.

Allison continues to lead in supplying commercial duty automatic transmissions with an application in a car transporter demonstrating a fuel savings of two litres per 100km compared to its manual equivalent. Renault's Midlum 280 DXi7 has been fitted with Allison's 3200 Series automatic gearbox for Allo Auto Service in Ferrières-en-Brays, Normandy, France. With a varied duty cycle, the 16 tonne payload car transporter is an ideal candidate for an automatic gearbox, particularly one that improves fuel efficiency and increases the vehicle's productivity.

According to Laurent Jarrossay, salesman at French dealership ETS Lenormant, Allison-equipped car transporters could prove highly efficient for automotive logistics companies, “We have found that fleets equipped with Allison's automatic transmissions save on average, an extra two litres of fuel per 100 kilometres. The Midlum 280's increased fuel efficiency is a clear bonus for anyone moving vehicles.”

An uninterrupted series of gear shifts allows for a smooth takeoff with optimum acceleration. “Even with four cars loaded, I have no problem pulling away,” says Lionel Délinger, owner of Allo Auto Service who purchased the Midlum 280 in August. Two months and 8,000km later, he remains impressed, stating that “fuel bills are a major concern for small auto repair companies like us and savings can really add up when running a fleet. With the Allison transmission, the vehicle never over-drives and less fuel is used.” The automatic gearbox can also compensate for differences between the drivers. “Having a driving licence does not necessarily mean being capable of driving a truck,” adds Délinger. “Each driver has his own particular driving habits. But with the automatic transmission these differences become less important, as the optimum gear is engaged automatically.”

Often considered indispensable for urban traffic conditions which require frequent variations in engine speed, an automatic transmission can also be useful for driving in the countryside as Délinger has discovered. “Our trucks often navigate a network of narrow country roads between urban areas. As you can imagine, a bulky car transporter is not as nimble as a smaller vehicle and requires frequent speed changes to accommodate the twists and turns of the roads. Allison's automatic transmission adapts quickly to changing road conditions, and when the truck encounters a long stretch, the torque converter locks up and allows the transporter to cruise at maximum economy.”

Michäel Petit, a driver for Allo Auto Service notes that Allison's automatic transmission is far easier to operate than the manual equipped transporters the company traditionally uses. “In six years of driving, I have never experienced Allison's automatic transmission. Now I can't imagine driving any other way. Gear shifts are automatic and seamless without affecting the speed of the vehicle.”

The intuitive gear changes offer a further benefit. The seamless shifting enables improved acceleration whilst maintaining a smooth drive without torque interruption. Petit adds that since the sole purpose of a transporter is to carry cars, a smooth drive is crucial to reducing the risk of damage to loaded vehicles.

The Allison gearbox is likely to keep the service team happy, too. Making multiple drops and moving heavy loads can take its toll on a manual gearbox, and durability is always a costly concern. However Allison's renowned automatic transmission protects the drivetrain from torque shocks thereby increasing reliability to reduce maintenance bills.

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