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• When the latest General Motors gas-turbine powered bus—Turbo-Cruiser III—was demonstrated recently to New York's Metropolitan Transportation Authority, Martin T. Caserio, general manager of GMC truck and coach division, said that a production version may be available in 1972 "although considerable research and development remains before it comes off the assembly line". It is also reported that GM expects to have production gas turbines for truck application in 1971.
Turbo-Cruiser III is the fourth GMC experimental turbine bus, the first having been built as long ago as 1953. And extensive field testing is at present going on with Detroit Diesels' fifth generation gas turbine in trucks as well as p.s.v. In the Astro 95, the turbine, which can give up to 400 bhp, is coupled to a specially modified Allison four-speed transmission. This vehicle has been building up road and test
The latest vehkles being used by General Motors of America on gas turbine development are the Astro 95 truck (1) and the Turbo Cruiser 171 (2). The 39-seat transit bus was recently demonstrated to New York s Metropolitan Transportation Authority.
circuit mileage since last spring.
The transmission used in the Turbo-Cruiser III is an experimental automatic unit called the Toric which is reported to give very smooth acceleration and deceleration qualities. Instead of accelerating and decelerating in distinct steps, as in a conventional transmission, the Toric is said to vary the ratio in a smooth, continuous progression with a character similar to a rheostat controlling electric current.
According to General Motors, the new transmission, in conjunction with the gas turbine and special sound-deadening installations, makes interior and exterior noise levels of the 39-seat bus comparable with those of a luxury car.