Ausroad Shifts Focus to Allison-Equipped Road Maintenance Trucks
Australian road maintenance vehicle manufacturer, Ausroad Systems, depends on Allison automatics to bring ease of use, versatility and robustness to its highly sought-after maintenance trucks. According to Ausroad managing director, Toni Dunlop, Allison transmissions have the design and technical requirements needed to maximize the performance of the trucks Ausroad modifies for its customers.
“Allison transmissions are perfect for the way we drive the machinery on the back of our trucks,” said Mr. Dunlop. “We drive 3 pumps off the power take-off (PTO), which puts a huge torque load on the transmission, but the Allison handles it with ease. Other transmissions don’t have the same PTO setup.”
Since its creation in the late 1980s, Ausroad has fitted road maintenance machinery to hundreds of trucks for local councils and mine site operators. In recent years, virtually all Ausroad trucks including the Isuzu FVZ range, Hino 500 Series, Fuso Fighter and Iveco Acco have been fitted with Allison’s 3500 6-speed automatic transmission as original equipment.
The road maintenance trucks are equipped with an aggregate spreader, spray bar and multi-purpose attachments for road patching and resealing. Transmissions are programed to disengage the PTO when engine speeds exceed a preset limit to ensure the exepensive maintenance machinery is not damaged.
“If the operator forgets to disengage the equipment, it is automatically shut down at 150 rpm,” Toni Dunlop explained. “Allison makes it simple to protect the investment, so there’s no concern about damaging the gear.”
Ausroad has put Allison automatics to the test over the years in climates ranging from sub-zero to more than 45°C, leaving no doubt about the durability of the transmissions.
“The operational patterns of our trucks are similar to those in refuse, with lots of stop and start use required. It’s quite a tough application, but we’ve never had a problem with Allison transmissions. They’re extremely robust and reliable, and we’ve never had to replace a gearbox due to wear and tear.”
As well as selling trucks in Australia, Ausroad also maintains its own for-hire fleet for both long and short term rentals. Being in the for-hire business made the decision to move to automatics obvious; the transmission takes pressure off drivers and ensures smooth operation.
“I don’t understand why you wouldn’t choose an automatic for this sort of vocation, particularly in a hire truck. It just seems crazy not to,” said Mr. Dunlop. “Not every driver is necessarily a good one, so the less to think about the better. An automatic means the driver doesn’t have to worry about a clutch, changing gears or engaging and disengaging the machinery to change direction.”
Established in 1989 by Toni Dunlop’s parents, Ausroad has been manufacturing road maintenance vehicles for nearly 25 years, positioning itself to be the leader in manufacturing of specialty road maintenance trucks. Ausroad supplies nearly half of local governments in Australia’s eastern states and a number of mining sites in Western Australia.
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