A ZF Transmission is the Automatic Choice

Automatic transmissions in passenger cars are nothing new – in fact, they’ve been around since the early 1940s. But they have only made an appearance in agricultural, construction and other heavy vehicles much more recently.

It was initially quite difficult to adapt auto transmissions to trucks, tractors and others. One of the main issues was there were so many different applications and conditions to contend with, depending on the industry. As a result, the “one gearbox fits all” scenario didn’t seem to be working, as there were many complaints about performance.

Unlike today’s compact but powerful electronic control modules, early automatic transmissions struggled to meet drivers’ demands. People complained about uneven and frequent shifting during acceleration, and transmissions struggled to find an optimal gear in hilly terrain.

Agricultural machines may be big, heavy and cumbersome, but they need to drive smoothly and use their power economically. A solution to the inefficient, power-wasting transmissions had to be found.

ZF Friedrichshafen found it.

Decades of experience in the business have made ZF one of the world’s leading driveline specialists for construction equipment and off-road transmissions. Today you will find a ZF transmission in many renowned makes of backhoe loaders, wheeled excavators, motor graders, articulated dump trucks, telescopic handlers and compaction loaders, among others.

Continuously Variable Transmissions
A continuously variable ZF transmission provides better fuel economy, more useable power, and a smoother driving experience than a traditional automatic transmission. Reliability, ease of operation and efficiency are also key benefits, as is the ability to move off or stop on a slope without using a clutch or brakes. This effectively means all operational errors are virtually eliminated.

The ZF transmission offers four driving ranges, seamlessly shifting between them to cover an effective speed range of 0 – 60km/hr. Because this type of transmission means there is no longer any need for manual gear shifting, machines do not experience the momentary drop in power usually associated with changing gears. This ensures more constant engine speeds, which in turn saves fuel.

And because drivers don’t have to be constantly shifting gears up and down, they are able to devote all their attention to the job at hand.

Palmer Johnson Power Systems is the authorized distributor and service center for leading manufacturers of heavy-duty, off highway transmissions and axles, including ZF. Go to pjpower.com.

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