General Transmissions plows new path for snow blower market with introduction of CVT-based Element V Power Path transmissions

Smooth, powerful and always ready to handle whatever the bitter winds of winter deliver, the new Element V Power Path snow blower transmissions are now available for a full range of applications in the North American market.

From the company that is driving the global outdoor power equipment market forward with advanced continuously variable transmission (CVT) technology comes the new Element V Power Path line of transmissions for both single-stage and dual-stage snow blowers.

“The Element V Power Path is a true breakthrough technology that will help manufacturers — and their dealers — sell more snow blowers now and in the future,” said Wouter Barendrecht, general manager of General Transmissions (GT).

The real difference between the new Power Path CVTs and the industry-standard friction-disk transmissions are immediately apparent upon start-up of the machine. The seamless gearing of the Power Path transmissions means that available power is automatically matched to the demands of the task at hand.

Need more power to plow through a particularly dense patch of snow? The Power Path automatically adjusts the amount of drive power — torque — on the fly to match the demands of the job. Users can just power through snow piles, with noticeably less effort on their part.

Starting up a hydrostatic-based snow blower in frigid temps often means waiting for the drive mechanism to warm up before tackling snow drifts. But the Power Path is ready to go to work at once — even in -20-degree F weather. Because the transmission uses heavy-duty belts to drive the gears — instead of using a hydraulic pump-based system as seen in the more traditional transmissions — the system requires no warming time. Users will appreciate not having to stand around in the cold waiting for their snow blower to heat up.

Five different models are currently in production at GT, including 2 options for the compact snow blower market with a maximum auger width of 22 inches, and operating capacity up to 7.5 horsepower. They ride on wheels sized from 10 to 13 inches. For those requiring more power and snow clearing capacity, GT offers up 3 Power Path models for dual-stage snow blowers. These models can accommodate auger widths up to 32 inches, and they deliver 10-15 hp. to drive 15- to 16-inch wheels.

All models deploy a progressive belt-driven, cone clutch system for gearless operation and shift-free forward/reverse movement. Available options include power or intuitive steering for manual or automatic unclutching of one drive wheel.

Snow, sleet, slush — whatever the elements deliver, the Power Path transmissions are designed to stand up to the test. Transmission components are sealed in weatherproof, reinforced glass-fiber cases that won’t rust or corrode, extending product operating life. All transmissions are lubricated for life and require no ongoing maintenance. And just as the Power Path transmissions need no start-up warm-up time, they develop less heat under load than friction-disk technology — meaning less wear and tear on critical internal components that can otherwise break down over time.

“We’ve tested these transmissions under all types of conditions, and believe that they are the most reliable, durable and best-performing drive solutions on the market for snow blower manufacturers,” said Barendrecht. “Importantly, they are also cost-competitive with existing technology, while delivering more performance.”

General Transmissions


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