User/Maker Cooperation in Benefiting an Automated Mechanical Transmission for a City Bus
Four years have passed since the automated mechanical transmission was first introduced in city buses, and this system is now making steady inroads into the market. The development of this system was a result of the cooperation between Kinki Nippon Railway Co., Ltd., the largest bus and coach transportation company, and Hino Motors Ltd., the largest truck and bus manufacturer in Japan. First an investigation was conducted of the topography and traffic conditions of the bus routes, then trial runs and refinement of the computer control software was carried out using three chosen routes, and finally the actual performance of the system was tested according to the finalized specifications. This paper introduces the development process, provides a background to the city bus service, and describes the benefits brought by this system and the successful results of this cooperation.