Allison Transmissions improves Australian bus operations12 March 2012

Veolia Transdev Shorelink Buses, one of the largest non-government bus operators in the Sydney basin, is reporting success from its three Allison gearbox-equipped, Cummins-powered Iveco buses, a Euro 4 version added in late 2010 and two Euro 5 versions in February last year.

It is estimated that the three buses have saved Veolia Transdev Shorelink Buses close to 6,000 litres of fuel, compared with other newer buses in the fleet.

They have covered close to 150,000 km since joining the Shorelink fleet, working double shifts, seven days a week, with only regularly scheduled maintenance taking them off the road.

General manager of Veolia Transdev Shorelink Buses Tony Ralph says the bus specification came after exhaustive market analysis. "We go through this exercise every few years, looking at all types and brands of bus, analysing features, benefits, maintenance, fuel consumption and capacity," says Ralph.

"We also study the various body builders to ensure that we can source the best overall package. And the needs and wants of our mechanics, who maintain the buses, are considered, as we research the ease of maintenance, service intervals, and cost of replacement parts," he adds.

While the Iveco buses equipped with Allison transmissions and Cummins engines emerged from the analysis as the best option, the company's drivers were apprehensive about the switch, he says, and were initially resistant to the change.

"The drivers offered some resistance, but since the three new buses have joined the fleet, the drivers have commented that [they] are far more responsive and smoother shifting than the other buses in our fleet," observes Ralph.

"The biggest factor for Shorelink has been the 10—15% improvement in fuel consumption from the new buses, which are already recording regular fuel economy of around 42 litres per 100km, compared with an average of between 47 and 50 litres per 100km from other newer buses in our fleet."

The Shorelink fleet comprises approximately 100, mostly Scania, buses with an average age of 10 years, while the oldest vehicle on the fleet is 23 years old.

John Challen

Related Companies
Allison Transmission Europe BV
Cummins Diesel
Scania (Great Britain) Ltd

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