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Allison Transmission Serves as Effective Choice for Regional and Urban Distribution Activities

Allison fully automatic transmissions allow carriers to optimize their operating costs. They also facilitate their energy transition, by optimizing the performance of CNG vehicles, now available for distribution activities over longer distances.

Allison Transmission Serves as Effective Choice for Regional and Urban Distribution Activities

Allison Transmission, a leading designer and manufacturer of conventional and electrified vehicle propulsion solutions and the largest global manufacturer of medium- and heavy-duty fully automatic transmissions for commercial and defense vehicles, is pleased to provide an update on regional and urban distribution activities in France. Carriers sensitive to environmental constraints are more and more moving to Compressed Natural Gas (CNG), an alternative solution to diesel which today provides the necessary autonomy to travel long distances for distribution activities.

The Allison fully automatic transmission, offered on CNG models from all manufacturers, optimizes the performance of these vehicles and makes their handling as easy as diesel vehicles. These advantages are added to the inherent qualities of Allison transmissions, which help carriers to control their operating costs. Natural gas now represents 99% of non-Diesel industrial vehicles registered in France since the beginning of the year.

Now, CNG-equipped vehicles can meet the needs of carriers for distribution activities over longer distances. Indeed, some CNG vehicles today have a range of up to 800 km.

This is the choice made by the transporter, Houtch, with the Renault Trucks D Wide CNG long range equipped with an Allison fully automatic transmission.

“We acquired 21 rigid D Wide CNG long ranges as soon as these vehicles were proposed by Renault Trucks. With their autonomy of over 800 km, these vehicles allow us to cover certain longer circuits and give us the possibility of refuelling every other day for our usual CNG routes, which brings us real comfort daily," said Alain and Hugues Houtch, Houtch transport managers, confirming the company's satisfaction with these vehicles.

Houtch is a family business established in 1965 with strong regional roots in Hauts-de-France. The company now has more than 400 employees. A player in the overall supply chain industry, Houtch operates in transport, packaging, charter, distribution, logistics and energy. With a strong interest for innovation and a sensitivity to environmental issues, the company is committed to the energy transition. In 2018 Houtch invested in a fast CNG station in St-Quentin, open 24/7 to all, plus three private slow stations in Fresnoy le Grand, Vervins and Cambrai. The management of the St-Quentin station has been entrusted to the Gaz'Up Network, which today comprises around twenty stations in France. The transporter has 50 CNG trucks (rigids and tractors), with plans to expand its fleet to 80 CNG vehicles by 2023.

“The feedback we have from drivers on these vehicles is very positive. They appreciate the smoothness and driving comfort of the Allison automatic transmission. Driving is indeed smoother, gear changes are smooth, with very good anticipation of slopes and other road hazards. We also benefit from real support from the Allison teams, which allows us to get the best from these transmissions with complete peace of mind,” said Alain Houtch.

“The Allison fully automatic transmission makes CNG vehicles drive the same as diesel vehicles, so drivers have no fear. The handling of the transmission does not require long learning. The latter indeed reduces the impact of technical differences in engines on driving. The Allison automatic transmission knows how to manage frequent starts, as all types of driving, by optimizing the vehicle’s consumption,” said Stéphane Gonnand, Allison Transmission Area Sales Manager France.

The Allison transmission is used on CNG models from all manufacturers and will allow carriers to make an energy transition with complete peace of mind.

These strengths are added to the intrinsic qualities of Allison automatic transmissions, which allow carriers to control their operating costs through consumption control, ease of driving, greatly reduced maintenance costs and maximum vehicle uptime.

In terms of fuel consumption, the Allison fully automatic transmission uses FuelSense 2.0® software, which constantly chooses the most fuel-efficient gear according to road conditions and the driver's needs. This intelligent and adaptive software also takes advantage of gear changes, with no loss of power and inertia, that only a fully automatic transmission can provide. The torque is continuously transmitted from the engine to the wheels without wasting energy.

As far as maintenance is concerned, the Allison fully automatic transmission only requires oil and filter changes at scheduled intervals, regardless of the difficulty of the routes, the traffic jams encountered, the type of driving and the experience of the operators. These reduced maintenance costs are accompanied by a vehicle availability close to 100% because no breakage or overheating, such as that of a dry clutch, is possible. The optional hydraulic retarder coupled with the fully automatic transmission is also a major cost saving item that drastically reduces wear and replacement of the vehicle's service brakes.

The driver benefits from a flexible and efficient vehicle, which allows him to focus on the complicated road conditions of urban and suburban areas. In addition, with the torque converter, manoeuvres at very low speed are mastered by the driver to the nearest millimetre, whatever the slopes.



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