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  • Writer's pictureNATALIA SOUSA

Allison Transmission will develop & Test electric trucks for the Dakar Rally

Allison Transmission will develop electric trucks for the Dakar Rally, supporting Team de Rooy in a partnership for 3 years. Testing is scheduled to begin on an electric truck equipped with a conventional Allison transmission in early 2022, ahead of the vehicle’s competition debut at the Dakar Rally in Saudi Arabia in January 2023. Allison’s 4000 Series™ fully automatic transmissions, equipped with an integral retarder designed to extend the life of brakes and reduce maintenance requirements and costs, will be integrated into Team de Rooy’s new electric truck. Designed to enable smooth and efficient operation in heavy-duty vehicles, the 4000 Series is a quickly adopted propulsion solution for applications including construction vehicles, refuse trucks and fire trucks. The Allison 4000 Series transmission has already been coupled with an electric motor in the Hyundai XCIENT, the world’s first hydrogen-electric heavy-duty truck, which went into production in 2020.

“Allison 4000 Series transmissions are purpose-built for durability and productivity, proven to perform in demanding conditions, and there is no motorsport competition on earth more demanding than Dakar,” said Tanner Gider, Managing Director, Europe and South Africa Sales, Allison Transmission. “We see electrification as an exciting opportunity to build upon the innovation Allison has become known for since its inception more than 100 years ago. We’re proud to partner with Team de Rooy to provide a robust electrified propulsion solution designed to achieve optimized fuel economy, maximized performance, and reduced emissions.”

“Dakar and other rally raid events are tough on mechanical components, especially the suspension, axles and gearbox,” said Gerard de Rooy, Managing Director, De Rooy Transport. “By integrating robust, durable transmissions from Allison, our trucks can effectively operate on difficult terrain including hard surfaces and loose sand. We’re thrilled to have Allison’s support in our plans to adopt electric vehicles.”

Another advantage of Allison fully automatic transmissions is the company’s patented torque converter, which multiplies engine and motor power at launch to significantly improve startability, resulting in higher operational productivity through enhanced performance. This will enable Team de Rooy’s electric rally raid truck to utilize a smaller drive motor to optimize efficiency and weight, free up space and weight to dedicate to batteries, and perform better when powering sand dunes. Additionally, the dampening effect of the fluid coupling in the torque converter will help protect the truck’s drive motor from shock loading associated with torsional forces in the driveline. Finally, self-learning algorithms in Allison Automatics continually optimize engine and motor speed and torque level, maximizing efficiency and minimizing energy use in electric motors.

Allison is a designer and manufacturer of electric hybrid and fully electric vehicle propulsion solutions. Allison recently expanded its electrification portfolio by introducing the eGen Power™ series of electric axles for the truck and bus markets. The e-Axles are fully integrated electric powertrains designed replace conventional driveline components including axles, engines and transmissions in Class 6-8 trucks. The e-Axles can easily fit into existing truck and bus chassis with minimal modifications. The compact size allows for additional space for battery packs where extended range is required.

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