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Allison helps shift Forest Coach Lines into double-deckers

Forest Coach Lines’ Bustech double-decker bus equipped with an Allison transmission.

‘The smoothness of its shifts has been hailed by our customers and our drivers’

SYDNEY, Australia One of Sydney’s oldest private bus operators has helped reintroduce double-decker buses on suburban routes, using Allison fully automatic transmissions to maximize efficiency and passenger comfort.

The 12.5-metre Bustech double-deckers are powered by 320-hp ISLe5 turbo diesels coupled to Allison T280 6-speed transmissions. “The new, high technology driveline with a Cummins engine and Allison transmission was a big factor, enabling us to have a high load factor and still be able to meet schedules and to match traffic speed,” said David Royle, CEO of Forest Coach Lines.

An Allison fully automatic transmission increases power while a manual or automated manual transmission (AMT) loses power with every shift. Allison automatics are unique because our patented torque converter experiences very little wear. Allison transmissions require only periodic fluid and filter changes to maintain peak performance.

The double-deckers have been running consistently and reliably on the daily, 30-mile commuter route between central Sydney and the bus operator’s base in Terrey Hills. The Allison-equipped double-deckers enabled Forest Coach to transport up to 100 passengers at a time, faster and with better space efficiency on the busy commuter route.

“I think everyone sees the logic of double-deck buses, especially in the central business district where there is a scarcity of kerb space and the articulated single deck buses these units have replaced used more space but transported less passengers,” Royle said.

“The Allison transmission has been very reliable and the smoothness of its shifts has been hailed by our customers and our drivers. It is a very competitive market and if we can’t give customers a comfortable and trouble-free ride then they will desert us and take their own car,” he said.

In addition, the Allison transmissions have offered “very good control when maneuvering and are extremely easy to use,” Royle added.

When the double-decker buses began their city runs in 2013 it was new ground for the company and was the first time such vehicles had been used on suburban runs since the NSW government retired its fleet of Leyland double-deckers, in the early 1980s.

Allison supplies to more bus Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) than our two largest automatic competitors. In fact, over 100 bus OEMs choose Allison fully automatic transmissions, which is why they’re hard at work in major cities around the globe.

May 25, 2018

About Allison Transmission

Allison Transmission (NYSE: ALSN) is the world’s largest manufacturer of fully automatic transmissions for medium- and heavy-duty commercial vehicles and is a leader in electric hybrid-propulsion systems for city buses. Allison transmissions are used in a variety of applications including refuse, construction, fire, distribution, bus, motorhomes, defense and energy. Founded in 1915, the company is headquartered in Indianapolis, Indiana, USA and employs approximately 2,900 people worldwide. With a market presence in more than 80 countries, Allison has regional headquarters in the Netherlands, China and Brazil with manufacturing facilities in the U.S., Hungary and India. Allison also has approximately 1,400 independent distributor and dealer locations worldwide. For more information, visit