Fully automatic Allison-equipped PAZ 3204 buses require 30 percent less maintenance than those with manual gearboxes.
SAINT PETERSBURG, Russia. To evaluate maintenance costs of bus equipped with fully automatic transmission, St. Petersburg Transport Co. (PTK), one of the largest passenger transport companies in northwest Russia, added four Allison-equipped PAZ 3204 to its fleet in 2012 and 2013.
After several years of tracking maintenance statistics and comparing the new buses with the other 300 buses of the same model operating in the fleet – but equipped with manual gearboxes – the difference was significant.
“According to data collected over the entire operation period, total maintenance costs for the PAZ 3204 bus with the Allison fully automatic transmission are about 30 percent lower than those with a manual,” said Maxim Radziyevskiy, chief engineer for PTK. “If we just consider transmission maintenance, costs for the manual gearbox at 0,34 rubles/km were nearly three times higher than the Allison Automatic at 0,13rubles/km. Difference is 0.21 rubles/km and increases to 0,28rubles/km with mileage.”
According to Radziyevskiy, under the same operating conditions, buses equipped with a manual gearbox require repairs (usually replacement of synchronizers of third or, less often, second gear), pneumatic/hydraulic clutch drive repair (replacement or repair of the pneumatic/hydraulic booster and the main clutch cylinder, pedal assembly repair), clutch components replacement (pressure plate, driven plate, release bearing and support bearing of the fly wheel drive shaft). To compare, clutch replacement takes 2.5 hours, so the downtime of bus equipped with manual increases.
With an Allison, fleets do not incur costly clutch repair since there simply is none. Allison Automatics are unique because the patented torque converter experiences very little wear. As a result, the transmissions require only periodic fluid and filter changes to maintain peak performance.
In addition to the measurable advantages, Allison transmissions provide more comfort and safety for the driver and passengers. The drivers of the new four PAZ 3204 buses recognize the ease of control and smooth ride delivered by Allison’s Continuous Power Technology™.
Continuous Power Technology delivers smoother, seamless, full-power shifts and superior acceleration. Each shift is made automatically when appropriate, allowing drivers to precisely manage performance and exercise superior vehicle control.
“PAZ 3204 buses with Allison transmissions are easier to drive than those equipped with manual transmissions,” said Radziyevskiy. “Power pack and driveline are under less strain as misuses are minimized. Drivers’ fatigue is reduced since they are relieved from gear shifting and clutch control.”