THE LIBERTY MOTOR COMPANY INC. Download PDF Report
Liberty Motor Company Inc. submitted a model Liberty Freestar, gasoline-powered 5 seats (including the driver) + 1 wheelchair position, 16-foot converted Ford Freestar Van, for a 4 yr/100,000 mile STURAA test. The odometer reading at the time of delivery was 1,070 miles. Testing started on February 28, 2006 and was completed on October 3, 2006. The Check-In section of the report provides a description of the bus and specifies its major components.
The primary part of the test program is the Structural Durability Test, which also provides the information for the Maintainability and Reliability results. The Structural Durability Test was started on August 11, 2006 and was completed on September 18, 2006.
The interior of the bus is configured with seating for 5 passengers including the driver and 1 wheelchair position. The test vehicle is a converted mini van; therefore, free floor space is not available. At 150 lbs per person 650 lbs per wheelchair position, this load results in a measured gross vehicle weight of 5,900 lbs. In order to avoid exceeding the GAWR (2,924 lbs) of the front axle and (2,775 lbs) of the rear axle, ballast for one seated passenger was eliminated. This reduction from full capacity resulted in an adjusted measured gross vehicle weight of 5,750 lbs and was used for all dynamic testing. The middle segment was performed at a SLW of the same 5,750 lbs and the final segment was performed at a CW of 4,520 lbs. Durability driving resulted in unscheduled maintenance and failures that involved a variety of subsystems. A description of failures and a complete and detailed listing of scheduled and unscheduled maintenance are provided in the Maintainability section of this report.
Accessibility, in general, was adequate, components covered in Section 1.3 (Repair and/or Replacement of Selected Subsystems) along with all other components encountered during testing, were found to be readily accessible and no restrictions were noted.
The Reliability section compiles failures that occurred during Structural Durability Testing. Breakdowns are classified according to subsystems. The data in this section are arranged so that those subsystems with more frequent problems are apparent. The problems are also listed by class as defined in Section 2. The test bus encountered no Class 1 or Class 2 failures. Of the two reported failures, one was a Class 3 and one was a Class 4.
The Safety Test, (a double-lane change, obstacle avoidance test) was safely performed in both right-hand and left-hand directions up to a maximum test speed of 45 mph. The performance of the bus is illustrated by a speed vs. time plot. Acceleration and gradeability test data are provided in Section 4, Performance. The average time to obtain 50 mph was 9.86 seconds.
The Shakedown Test produced a maximum final loaded deflection of 0.126 inches with a permanent set ranging between -.001 to .004 inches under a distributed static load of 2,475 lbs. The Distortion Test was completed with all subsystems, doors and escape mechanisms operating properly. No water leakage was observed throughout the test. All subsystems operated properly.
The test vehicle was not equipped with any type of tow eyes or tow hooks, therefore, the Static Towing Test was not performed. The Dynamic Towing Test was performed by means of a front-lift tow. The towing interface was accomplished using a hydraulic under-lift wrecker. The bus was towed without incident and no damage resulted from the test. The manufacturer does not recommend towing the bus from the rear; therefore, a rear test was not performed. The Jacking and Hoisting Tests were also performed without incident. The bus was found to be stable on the jack stands, and the minimum jacking clearance observed with a tire deflated was 7.0 inches.
A Fuel Economy Test was run on simulated central business district, arterial, and commuter courses. The results were 14.06 mpg, 16.17 mpg, and 26.13 mpg respectively; with an overall average of 16.91 mpg.
A series of Interior and Exterior Noise Tests was performed. These data are listed in Section 7.1 and 7.2 respectively.