Allison Transmission Key to AOS Grand Toro’s UK & Ireland Success

Ampthill, UK – Since its UK launch in 2022, the AOS-branded Grand Toro midi bus from Anadolu Isuzu has achieved strong market growth. Sales in excess of 80 units have been achieved, care of West Sussex-based distributor, EVM UK Ltd. 

With its proven proprietary driveline ensuring advanced performance and exceptional fuel economy, the Grand Toro fills a gap in the market for a mid-size vehicle that combines the comfort and amenities of a full-size touring coach with the flexibility and cost of a smaller model.

The 8.5-meter, 35/37-seat midi bus (or 35-seat in the Public Service Vehicles Accessibility Regulations (PSVAR) compliant model, which has space for a wheelchair) features a Cummins B4 4.5-liter 206 horsepower engine driving through an advanced Allison T 3270R xFETM six-speed fully automatic transmission with integral retarder. 

Both Allison and Cummins are familiar and trusted names in the Western European market, giving operators the confidence to choose a coach that comes from a new brand to the market. Anadolu Isuzu is a Japanese Turkish joint-venture, based in Istanbul, between Anadolu Group, Isuzu Motors Co., Ltd., Itochu Co. and HICOM. 

Typically, converted mini coaches have a capacity of under 30 passengers with luggage, while full-size coaches tend to start with over 40 seats. Small groups of passengers from the corporate or special occasion markets often require a premium experience, which only the AOS Grand Toro can currently provide. 

“The Grand Toro’s engine and transmission are well integrated and work well together both mechanically and through the driveline management software,” said Danny McGee, Managing Director of EVM UK Ltd, which won Best New Market Performance in 2022-2023 at the Anadolu Isuzu Annual Distributors Meeting 2023, Antalya, Turkey. “Allison obviously has an excellent reputation as a manufacturer, and that is further reinforced by the strength of its service network.

“Customers like the Grand Toro because its size enables it to do things that smaller and larger vehicles cannot. While it benefits from a premium driveline and a full-size coach-style interior and exterior, it’s priced appropriately for its size and market,” said McGee. “It’s a durable product offering operators bus OEM standards and a natural progression from smaller converted vehicles or vehicles built on truck-derived chassis.”

Leading road passenger transport supplier Dawsongroup Bus and Coach Ltd has purchased six Grand Toros, with more to come. “We always choose vehicles of premium quality for customer satisfaction and reliability,” said Paul Sainthouse, Managing Director, Dawsongroup Bus and Coach Ltd. “The tried-and-tested Cummins/Allison driveline gave us the initial confidence to invest in the Grand Toro: in fact, we would not have been comfortable with buying a vehicle from a manufacturer relatively new to the UK market that didn’t have a proven driveline.

“Our customers like the Grand Toro because it lets them enjoy the benefits of fuel economy and manoeuvrability of a midi coach, particularly while in urban areas. They also recognise that their full-sized coaches aren’t always full,” said Sainthouse. “They want to know that the vehicles they choose from us have good aftersales technical and parts support, and that is certainly offered by Allison. It’s also technology that most operators will be familiar with. 

“The driver and rider experiences are very important to our customers, too,” said Sainthouse. “Thanks to the Allison transmission we know the vehicles deliver a high-quality ride, the drivers will find it easy to get on with, and the fuel economy will be class-leading.”

The xFE transmission’s internal gear ratios are optimised to minimise fuel consumption, while its shifting strategy is controlled by Allison’s FuelSense 2.0® software package to always shift between ratios at the ideal speed for maximum economy. This yields longer periods of transmission lock up and extended cruising at low engine speeds.

In stop-start conditions, the Allison xFE transmission automatically selects neutral at a standstill, reducing parasitic drag and optimising fuel use. The passenger experience is enhanced by Allison’s Continuous Power Technology™, which allows seamless shifting, even under full-power application.

Jul 08, 2024


Allison Transmission (NYSE: ALSN) is a leading designer and manufacturer of vehicle propulsion solutions for commercial and defense vehicles, the largest global manufacturer of medium- and heavy-duty fully automatic transmissions, and a leader in electrified propulsion systems that Improve the Way the World Works. Allison products are used in a wide variety of applications, including on-highway trucks (distribution, refuse, construction, fire and emergency), buses (school, transit and coach), motorhomes, off-highway vehicles and equipment (energy, mining and construction applications) and defense vehicles (tactical wheeled and tracked). Founded in 1915, the company is headquartered in Indianapolis, Indiana, USA. With a presence in more than 150 countries, Allison has regional headquarters in the Netherlands, China and Brazil, manufacturing facilities in the USA, Hungary and India, as well as global engineering resources, including electrification engineering centers in Indianapolis, Indiana, Auburn Hills, Michigan and London in the United Kingdom. Allison also has approximately 1,600 independent distributor and dealer locations worldwide. For more information, visit