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EUROPEAN ON-LINE MAGAZINE - January / February 2014 Transport Web Snc -

Bus To Coach FUTURA FMD2



RIVISTA ON-LINE linked - January / February 2014 BusToCoach



European on-line magazine Editor in chief

Marino Ginanneschi

Managing editor and International relations

Elena Prearo

Photos and videos


On website is on line the directory dedicated to Used. FLASH NEWS VDL, Scania, Mercedes, Otokar, Ebusco, Hess.

HIGH TECH STORE Allison, Bridgestone, Setra, Dinosan, Eberspächer.

IBE CONFERENCE Seeking the right answers in Rome.


Marco Degano


Transport Web di Marco Degano & C Snc I 20149 Milano Via Silva 33

E-mail: Internet:

SETRA Delivery of the very last ComfortClass 400.

Registration: Tribunale di Milano n. 140 del 16/03/2012

SOLARIS First delivery of Euro VI Urbinos in Germany.

BORDEAUX What we saw at the Public Transport Exibition.



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MERCEDES BENZ Snowy debut for the new Sprinter 4x4.

TOMASSINI STYLE The ‘Made in Italy’ stands out on the Sprinter Vip.

VDL BUS & COACH The new multipurpose Futura FMD2.

If you want to sell or buy a bus, here’s the right way. You can make your insertion or search vehicles for sale. *** You can access through the site, selecting the USED directory or going directly to the link content/announcements


BusToCoach on-line Magazine - January / February 2014



1st January 2014 entered service in ON Helsinki, Finland, the first VDL Citea buses with Euro VI engine. The vehicles have

been delivered last December to Pohjolan Liikenne, one of the largest Finnish bus companies, operating local, regional and long-distance services with a fleet of 470 buses and coaches. The supply consist of 29 buses commissioned in three different models: the Citea LLE-120, 12 metres in length, the Citea SLE, 12.9 metres in length, and the Citea XLE, a 3-axle model with a length of 14.5 metres.



cania will supply 120 bus chassis to Mosgortrans, the public transport company of Moscow. The vehicles will be produced by Russia-based commercial vehicle manufacturer GAZ Group. The model is Golaz Voyage, the same of a previous order for 709 buses delivered to Mostransavto for operation in the Moscow region and Sochi. Built on Scania’s 2-axle chassis with Euro 4 SCR engines, the buses will be equipped with the Scania Opticruise automatic gear changing system and 50 of these vehicles will be fitted with special equipment for disabled passengers. The buses will be put into operation in the city of Moscow. Mosgortrans is a state-owned company and one of the largest public traffic operators in Europe. The company operates bus, trolleybus and tram networks in the city of Moscow and transports more than 5.5 million passengers on a daily basis. Its current fleet consists of more than 5,300 buses.


urkish manufacturer Otokar delivered six Vectio T C Midi-buses to Meidenbauer Stadtbus Gmbh, Germany, through its official dealer in Bayern Sa-

nova. The vehicles are the first Otokar buses with Euro VI engine delivered in Europe. The Vectio C is a 9.3-meter, medium-size low entry bus with an integral structure and independent front suspension. This model has a capacity for up to 69 passengers (Meidenbauer version is for up to 62 passengers) and is powered by the MAN D0836 LOH 73 Euro VI engine (6 cylinders, 6,871cc, 184 kW/250 hp) matched to a Voith DIWA automatic transmission. The company Meidenbauer Stadtbus GmbH is the biggest German Otokar customer, it owns a fleet of 40 buses and operates mainly in the cities of Lauf and Hersbruck in the Nürnberg area.


eolia Transport Finland (part of Transdev V Group) will put the first 100% electric bus into use, developed and produced by EBUSCO.

The bus will run for a 3 year test under harsh winter conditions in the Espoo city area in normal bus traffic. The test will be supported by the Technology Finding Agency, Espoo city, Helsinki Region Transport (PTA), Ministry of Economics and Employment, Ministry of Transport and Communications, Traffic safety agency and Technical Research Centre, together with Aalto University, Metropolia Polytechnics and EBUSCO. EBUSCO is a Dutch company which focuses on the development, marketing and sales of full electric buses for the European market.


elo Horizonte, Southeast Brazil, is one of the B twelve locations for the World Soccer Cup in 2014 and is gearing up for the increasing urban pas-

senger transport next year. That is why the operator companies of the new Bus Rapid Transit system (BRT) “MOVE” are investing in 500 bus chassis by Mercedes-Benz. The Daimler subsidiary MercedesBenz do Brasil is starting deliveries of the ordered bus chassis immediately and will complete the bus fleets in due time for the operational start of the BRT system in the first quarter of 2014. The 500 Mercedes-Benz bus chassis will be deployed in the 23 km-long BRT system “MOVE”, which will dispose over three partial routes and around 40 bus stops. Until the third quarter of the current year, Daimler`s bus division sold 14,400 units in Latin America. The 17 percent sales plus compared to the previous year results.

last of the 27 new articulated trolTHE leybuses with optimized electronic equipment from Vossloh Kiepe and Hess body has

been delivered to the public transport company in Lausanne (TL) in December 2013. Five of the 18 m long articulated trolleybuses were handed over to TL already in 2012 as a pre-series while the remaining 22 low-floor buses were delivered successively until December 2013. All the 27 trolleybuses are type “Swiss Trolley 4” powered by two 120 kW drive motors which are smaller and lighter than its predecessors (“Swiss Trolley 3” ordered in 35 units by TL in 2008). Moreover, lighter and more compact traction inverters (DPU) have been fitted.

BusToCoach on-line Magazine - January / February 2014

SOLARIS THE LAST euro VI SETRA COMFORT 400 FOR germanY The 50th Setra acquired by Teinachtal-Reisen is also Two Urbino 12 with Euro VI engines delivered to German operator Wies Faszinatour the last of the ComfortClass 400 series. whose entire fleet is made of Solaris buses 6,551 units produced between 2004 and 2013 the end of an era. The one marked IT’S by a very successful series: the Setra ComfortClass 400. The last vehicle was delivered to German bus operator Teinachtal-Reisen who, this way, put on the road his 50th Setra bus, the S 415 GT built in the EvoBus plant in Neu-Ulm. The vehicle is equipped with 49 seats and will be put in use for tourism and intercity line services.

Produced from 2004 to 2013 in seven variants, the ComfortClass 400 series counts 6,551 units. These vehicles have been commissioned from all over Europe by customers in 33 countries. The best-seller of the series is the S 415 GT-HD of which more than 2,600 units have been sold. The new Setra ComfortClass 500 from Daimler Buses was introduced in 2012, a model that took notice from the very beginning especially for the high efficiency proved at the Record Run Buses 2012, a road test that took place in Wiesbaden, Germany. Fuel consumption is reduced in fact by 8.2 percent compared to the previous model. In October 2013 came the “Coach of the Year 2014” title. A panel of experts consisting 19 European bus journalists conferred the prestigious award at Busworld Kortrijk.

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ore Solaris buses joined the fleet of M Wies Faszinatour, a bus operator based in Weiden in der Oberpfalz, Germany. It could not have been otherwise for the loyal customer of the Polish manufacturer, since its entire fleet is comprised exclusively of Solaris buses. The latest additions are two vehicles of the Urbino 12 range equipped with Euro VI engines. The vehicles are characterised by pleasant interiors thanks to the combination of wood-effect flooring with side walls and ceiling panels in refreshing shades of green. The layout consists of 31 seats with an additional two tip-up seats located in the multi-purpose area in front of the second door. In order to avoid conflict with passengers

in wheelchairs, a special area for passengers with children in pushchair is provided on the right side of the bus. Luggage racks are located on the front wheel-arches. The vehicles are powered by latest generation DAF MX -11, an in-line six-cylinder engine with common-rail injection. The engine delivers 210 kW (290 hp) and 1,200 Nm torque. Low emission levels (less than 0.4 grams/kWh nitric oxides and under 0.01 grams/kWh particulate matter) are ensured by a combination of exhaust gas recirculation and exhaust after-treatment. The buses are equipped with the new Voith DIWA.6 automatic transmission, developed by Voith Turbo for the new emissions standards.

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BusToCoach on-line Magazine - January / February 2014


The first edition of IBE Conference took place in Rome. An occasion for exchanges between sector associations, institutions and operators of public transport by bus first IBE Conference stated off on THE the right foot. In fact, the two-day event that took place in Rome last December

succeeded in engaging a large group of sector operators, focusing around three crucial themes for the Italian market: the renewal of the circulating fleet, accessibility to the art cities and the analysis of long distance coaches transport. The event was organised by TTG Italia, a company of Rimini Fiera Group, and Anav, the National Association of Passenger Transport, a member of Confindustria (Italian Employers’ Federation). Conference participants were pleased with the concrete exchanges of experiences and organisers were also satisfied with the event outcome. As pointed out by Nicola Biscotti, President of Anav: «I can only express satisfaction with the success of this event jointly organised by Anav and TTG. The conference, that addressed important sector issues, was attended by a great number of participants and the exchanges with the institutions was very constructive». Anav, Asstra and Anfia unanimously denounced the political indifference towards the aged state of the fleet currently in circulation, which has now exceeded 12 years of average age, and regarding the touring coach segments Euro 0, I and II make up over 50% of the total number

of passengers transport vehicles. manufacturing left, also given Bredamenarini’s The Government in office was praised for the intention to collaborate with Turkish company positive impact of the latest appropriations Karsan for its major production commissions. (EUR 5 billion a year for 10 years in addition to A study about the segment of passenger tran1.5 billion a year allocated to Regions for Public sport vehicles for hire in Italy conducted by Transport) but we are still far away from a real Hermes Research Centre and Isfor depicted the industrial sector policy. The discussion underli- crisis in the touring coach market: -8.3% dened the need to program specific funding for the stinations in Italy in 2012; -21.1% short trips renovation of public transport vehicles, and also in central Italy, -21.5% long distance trips and the possibility to include scheduled maintenan- -18.9% visits to art cities. ce in the purchasing cost and depreciation costs Pertaining the latter figure, management policies in service contracts, as well as a percentage for for access and parking of tourist coaches in art renovation. cities are critical. Entrance and park tolls are in The situation in the Italian bus market is cum- place in at least 42 cities with rates ranging from bersome with half the volume compared to pre- EUR 50 to EUR 250 per day, without adequate 2008. Final figures facilities in terms for 2013 will be of secure parking BUSES FOR HIRE IN ITALY around 2,400 units, and service areas 5,593 5,724 all inclusive. With in return. the Italian manu- 4,969 The Hermes/Isfor facturing industry study also highli3,504 ghted how policies becoming smaller and smaller. After about access re2,152 the shut down of strictions in other the Iveco plant in European coun1,376 Valle Ufita there tries pertain only are now just a few to Euro classes of minibus bodybuilpollutant emissions ders and little more and in no case the-

re are tolls such as those in force in Italian cities. Important considerations also came from Claudio Ricci, the Mayor of Assisi, who in the name of ANCI (the Association of Italian Municipalities) stressed the need to standardise the toll system for touring coaches (foreign tour operators find it difficult to assess costs); the fact that revenues should be used to create tourist services and not to fill up municipalities’ funds; that tolls should not add up to tourist taxes. More in general, Ricci promoted the necessity to have a shared tourism strategy by creating a permanent Ministry that would provide continuity to projects, as part of a vision of tourism as a ‘factory of useful desires’. The third discussion topic was passengers road transport over long distances. This topic was also supported by a study, conducted by the Laboratory of Transport Policy (Transpol), the Milan Polytechnic Institute and Anav. A territory analysis of service offers highlighted a potential for further developments. The national bus sector covers more than 88 million bus-kilometres and serves over 2.6 billion passenger-kilometres, but there are still ample possibilities to compete with rail transport by means of identifying new routes, especially in Northern Italy. A single information portal for users also needs to be built from scratch.

BusToCoach on-line Magazine - January / February 2014

Iveco Bus in the long version

new 18-metre articulated UrTHE banway was the star of the show. Recognisable by the headlights bor-

SHOWCASED IN BORDEAUX The National Public Transport Conference which was held in Bordeaux, France, November 27 to 29 last year, was an opportunity to display buses with Euro VI engines as well as hybrid, natural gas and electric vehicles. Called ‘Rencontres nationales du transport public’, the exhibition is dedicated to buses and minibuses and is held in the French province in odd years while in even years it takes place in Paris. The European Mobility Exhibition will take place on June 10-12, 2014, at the Porte de Versailles in Paris next.

rowed from the Stralis, its front and rear look like those of the 12-metre version presented at UITP Congress in Geneva last May, equipped with a transversal Cursor 9 engine. Unlike the 12-metre Urbanway equipped with a Cursor 7 engine exhibited at Busworld Kortrijk, the rear end of the articulated vehicle seen in Bordeaux has a different rear window (the 360 or 400 hp Cursor 9 engine is transversal). Impressive interiors and translucent bellows, a trendy feature for this type of vehicles (it also has a new air distribution system built into the pavilion and LED lighting). It also stands out for its exteriors with four double-doors entrances. The passenger compartment is spacious and can accommodate 34-48 seats, with the possibility to fit a wheelchair. The turning radius reaches 10.24 metres. The diesel-electric hybrid version, which will follow, will also be equipped with Euro VI technology and will have new features such as the all electric bus stop system, eliminating noise and pollutant emissions. Alongside the articulated Urbanway, there was the 12-metre version with Tector 7 engine (286 hp) and the 12-metre Crossway LE (Low Entry) equipped with Cursor 9 engine of 360 hp.

The other happening at the Iveco Bus exhibit area was the award by French Transport Minister, Frédéric Cuvillier, of the certificate of conformity “France Origin Euro VI Warranty”. It’s a “Made in France” label for the production of the Magelys Pro, the Urbanway and its chassis at the plant in Anno-

nay. The award ceremony was attended among others by Pierre Lahutte, international head of trucks and buses for CNH Industrial, Antoine Garnier, Commercial Director of Iveco Bus France and Antonio Free, Director of Production of Annonay.

Ellisup guest of EDF

irst unveiled at Busworld Kortrijk last F October, the Ellisup concept bus by Iveco Bus was featured in the exhibition space

of EDF (Électricité de France), one of many but a very important partners of Iveco Bus. This innovative electric vehicle will be tested at CEA (Commissariat à l’énergie Atomique et aux énergies alternatives) in Grenoble and will also be tested on one of the lines of RATP local public transport company in Paris. The French capital, in fact, decided to cut diesel buses off its fleet by replacing them entirely with hybrid buses and further with electric buses. As it was already possible to see in Kortrijk, Ellisup’s drive is provided by an electric motor developed by Michelin and housed within four of the eight wheels with reduced diameter. This engine works thanks to an innovative combination of batteries and super-capacitors used for energy storage and featuring high power density and long life. Thanks to the small wheels it has been possible to design a bus that is spacious and welcoming. Ellisup features a very large glazed section on the rear. A fast charging station (4 minutes) at the terminus provides a running range of 8-10 km. The charging takes place by means of a panto-

graph on the roof at the front of the vehicle. The movements of the pantograph (up/down) can be automated using a RFID (Radio Frequency Identification Detection) and TAG (transponder) systems. The fast charging technology (and therefore the smaller number of batteries onboard) is a definite advantage in the reduction of weight and costs.

to standstill and restart in electric mode). The GX series outstands its competitors for comfort: panoramic windows, a gazed roof (Lumi’Bus) and light sources integrated in the handrail columns (Lampa’Bus option) and coloured dashboard.

Setra Business version

Daimler Group manufacturer, foTHE cused on luxury and ultra-luxury models for the touring coach segment, deci-

Heuliez full renewal

euliez Bus, a subsidiary of CNH InH ternational, exhibited three buses: the 10.75-metre GX 137 L, the 12-metre GX

337, both with Euro VI, 250 hp and 286 hp Tector engine respectively. And finally the GX 427 hybrid (Euro V) with the colours of RATP of Paris. The Euro VI version of the GX 437 and GX 427 with Tector 7 of 286 hp will be combined with an integrated starter generator of 200 kW, which supplies the electricity to recharge the batteries and to power the electric motor. The hybrid models are also equipped with a “Stop/Start” function (the engine stops when the vehicle comes to a halt), a braking energy recovery system and “Come and go” function (switches off the heat engine before coming

ded to present a mixed suburban bus that is “more suited to the needs of French operators”. That’s the goal of the new UL Business of the MultiClass series. It features three models in three different lengths and with varying characteristics: the 12.20-metre S 415 UL fitting 55 seats plus driver, the 12.70-metre S 416 UL with 59 seats plus driver and the 13.38-metre S UL 417 fitting 63 seats plus driver. They are all powered by the 7.7-litre OM 936 Mercedes engine (299 or 354 hp). The S 415 UL on exhibit is equipped with 6-speed ZF Ecolife automatic transmission, tinted windows, Transit seats, luggage rack. The luggage compartment has a volume of 4.8 m3. The UL S 415 with double door at the centre is also equipped with Braun wheelchair lift.

Volvo cuts consumption

the Volvo 9700 Hybrid was the star IF of the exhibition area of the Swedish manufacturer, the new management was

none the less. Following the departure of director Michele Ferrara, Bernard Méauzoone is now the head of Volvo Buses France. He is not unknown in the industry. In fact, ten years ago, Volvo Bus appealed to this senior official of Renault Trucks to relaunch the brand in France. “Save up to 39% in fuel” was the line seen everywhere at the Volvo stand. Everyone at Volvo Bus France agreed that “consumption savings range from 30 to 40% based on test results already carried out in Sweden”, says the new director “and this is thanks to the 8-litre Euro VI engine combined with the I-Sam engine management system and the 12-speed semi-automatic I-Shift transmission”. Two Volvo 7900 are currently being tested on the SYTRAL network in Lyon.

MAN full speed ahead

iven that the German manufacturer talked G a lot about his Lion’s City Hybrid vehicle, it came to Bordeaux with a Euro VI CNG articulated bus. The Lion’s City CNG is on various fronts “the solution to many French cities”, that is according to the manufacturer. As for the methane, the chances were that the Bordeaux bus network runs on gas buses... The Lion’s City CNG is 18.75 metres long and fits 39 seats (133 standing passengers).

Mercedes Made in France It is powered by the 12.8-litre LUH03 E2876 engine with 310 hp. The gas tanks (made of plastic composite with a load of up to 320 litres) are located on the roof and covered by a special fairing. The Euro VI engine has lower rates of nitrogen oxide (NOx ) and carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions compared to Euro V and EEV.

Scania Gas and Biogas

ay before other European countries, W Sweden has been deploying natural gas, biogas and bio-ethanol buses for a long time.

Scania aimed at demonstrating its capabilities in alternative solutions by exhibiting its new gas Euro VI Citywide LF bus at its stand area in Bordeaux. The new 9-litre Euro VI gas engines (280 and 340 hp) are suitable to run on natural gas or on biogas. Designed to achieve the same performance as their diesel counterparts, these gas engines develop a rated torque that puts them at the top of their category, 1,350 and 1,600 Nm at low rpm and fuel economy that exceeds even Euro V engines. Solutions for liquid gas tanks are in the workings and should entail double running range. The vehicle platform measures 12 metres and is equipped with 3 doors. It has 21 seats + 2 retractable seats and wheelchair platform. It fits a maximum of 93 people (70 standing).

Citaro Euro VI, the flagship vehiTHE cle of the brand with the star, is available both in the standard and articulated

versions (a Citaro G was exhibited in the outside area). A Low Entry version had also been presented at the last Busworld in Kortrijk. It is powered by the 7.7-litre 6-cylinder OM 936 engine capable of delivering 299 hp power and combined with a 4-speed Voith automatic transmission. The vehicle on show, measuring 12.13 meters in length and with 3 doors, features aerodynamic and fluid lines compared to its predecessor. For the interiors Mercedes arranged a layout of 24 seats + 83 standing passengers or the same number of seats + 75 standing and one wheelchair passenger. Accessibility is ensured by a Hübner ramp integrated to the chassis. Furthermore, Mercedes informed visitors that his Citaro is assembled in France, in Ligny-en-Barrois in the North-East of the country, pointing out that “the former Kässbohrer site has the know-how of over 30 years of experience in the construction of buses and coaches”. The plant, which employs 400 people, assembled 588 units in 2012, of which 65.3% for the French market. This information was noted on a poster at the Mercedes stand, just to show that the manufacturer is well rooted in the French territory. Next to the Citaro, it was possible to see a Sprinter Transfer equipped with a 2.2-litre 163 hp Euro VI OM 651 engine.

with ramp and sliding door, the City 9 (nine seats) has floor guides and a folding aluminium ramp. It is possible to opt between two types of seats: mobile or folding and rotating. The mobile seat is fitted with wheels at the base for added manoeuvrability.

Solaris insists Safra Businova with the electric to impress

Urbino 12 electric bus in the size nnovative. There is no other word to define THE of 12 metres was the novelty presented by the Polish manufacturer. First IBusinova. It’s a three axles bus equipped introduced at Busworld Kortrijk, it caused a with a real living room on the back, furthersensation in Bordeaux. The bus is powered by a 160 kW asynchronous motor and is equipped with lithium-ion traction batteries. The running range is 150 km. It can be fitted with pantograph and “plug in” system. It has a capacity of 23 seating + driver and 55 standing passengers. Demonstration of its capabilities was provided by RATP in Paris. Right next to it there was a 12-metre InterUrbino (47 seats, 5.2 m3 luggage capacity in the trunk) with 6.7-litre Euro 6 Cummins engine of 310 hp.

Dietrich for disabled

City 21 built on Fiat Ducato THE chassis is the reference model for city services of manufacturer-coachbuilder Dietrich Vehicules, thanks to its low flat floor. It features a large double door at the centre for easy accessibility. Another highlight are the windows all around the vehicle. The demand for ‘transportation on call’ solutions is gaining momentum in France due to the legislation requiring public transport to be accessible by disable persons which will come into force in 2015. One then looks at Dietrich Vehicules and its fully accessible City 9 on Citroën Jumper chassis. Equipped

more placed on a raised platform that makes it look like a glazed terrace. As they say: “Beautiful”. It has a capacity of 15-19 seating and 75-60 standing passengers, in addition to one passenger on wheelchair. One can board from a single door at the front and get out from a large double door located in the centre. The driver’s area, connected to the corridor is elevated and features a multi-adjustable seat and numerous storage compartments. Resting on two axles, the back of the vehicle is accessed via stairs. The 4-cylinder VM Motori with 103 hp is housed underneath and it comprises two 120 hp asynchronous electric motors and an hydraulic motor (motor with variable displacement of 110 cm3). Combined with a two ratio automatic transmission. In the course of approval, initially the Businova will be tested on the Toulouse network. The question now is whether it will be able to compete with ‘traditional’ hybrid and electric buses.


BusToCoach on-line Magazine - January / February 2014


global manufacturer THE of tires and rubber products Bridgestone presents the

Bandag BDU2. It’s a retreaded tire available in various widths to allow the reconstruction of the carcasses of the most common sizes used in this segment. «With the new Bandag BDU2», said Harald Van Ooteghem from Bridgestone Europe, «urban fleet managers now have access to one of the most advanced retreaded tires on the market, able to meet all the technical requirements and the needs of users, like the extraordinary comfort and safety of passengers, the great performance in all seasons and a long life of the tire».



etra offers a dismountable load container designed for the aerodynamic concept of the new Setra TopClass 500 and Setra ComfortClass 500 generation of touring coaches. The ski box offers sufficient space for winter sports equipment as well as other items of luggage. The design takes the airflow around the vehicle into consideration and eliminates undesirable air turbulence around the rear section. Even with the load container, the TopClass 500 and Comfort Class 500 vehicles achieve a Cd value of 0.33, which is unmatched in this segment. The ski box provides bus operators with a flexible system that offers six different loading options. Painted to match the colour of the vehicle, it’s 750 mm long, 2,375 mm wide and 2,220 mm high. Without shelving or racks, it weighs 180 kilograms. The permissible gross weight of the hinged box is 500 kilograms, while the load capacity is 3 cubic meters.



local bus transportation authority of Indonesia’s capital TransJakarta Busway ordered 66 Zhong Tong articulated BRT buses with an exclusive specification of Allison automatic transmissions. All the buses are fitted with the Allison T375R transmission. This is not the first venture in support of the export of Chinese buses to Indonesia. In the past, Dandong’s Huang Hai Bus exported buses to Indonesia, all equipped with Allison transmission. The LCK6180GC 18-meter articulated BRT buses are fitted with natural gas engines, complementing the fully automatic transmissions for superior performance. Allison’s advanced electronic control technology helps engines obtain excellent fuel economy even at low speeds. At the same time, Allison’s Continuous Power TechnologyTM helps improve natural gas vehicle performance, avoiding acceleration delays and power interruptions common with gas engines combined with manual transmissions. llison Transmission, has recently announced the successful deployment of a fully automatic urban bus prototype in Santa Fé, Argentina. The vehicle is a Mercedes Benz 1725 manufactured by COLCAR, the top seller of MercedesBenz buses in Argentina. It is a front-engine articulated bus with a raised floor and fitted with an Allison T270R from the Torqmatic Series automatic transmission with retarder. «We have been using an Argentine-made front-engine articulated bus for five years now, but it has a manual transmission», explained Colcar Service Manager Daniel Dobrilovich. «While vehicle performance is satisfactory with the manual, one major issue is excessive use of the rear wheel brakes and the problems that come from having to replace such an important component every two and half months on average». It was for these reasons that they decided to work on a front-engine articulated bus with an Allison automatic transmission.




is known that spending time in confined and crowded spaces increases the chances of coming into contact with bacterial and viruses, especially during colder months. Public transport vehicles are among such environments. What to do? Avoiding the use of public transport is not a solution. One way to address this problem is to use an effective disinfection system. Such as the Dinosan device for the automatic disinfection of vehicles. It is easy to install and comes equipped with a twin-engine and special nebulizers. Operation is as simple as pressing a button on the dashboard to start a disinfection cycle of one minute involving the release of the disinfectant loaded in the container provided with the device itself. At the end of the procedure Dinosan turns off automatically and it is ready for the next cycle. The container has a capacity of one litre of disinfectant for about 170 cycles, enough for disinfecting the environment and also releasing a pleasant aroma in the air. Dinosan is distributed by Electoplexi in Terracina, in the province of Latina.


ütrack Eberspächer developed S the new roof-mounted AC 136 All Electric (AE) climate control

system for electric buses. Already in use in a trolleybus in Geneva, as part of a pilot program, the integrated heat pump version was introduced at Busworld Kortrijk 2013. Depending on demand and outside temperature, the AC system efficiently combines cooling and heating. The technology is based on a reversible refrigeration circuit for which all the components have been designed. In comparison with electric auxiliary heaters, with the same energy input it generates about three times as much heat. Also at Busworld, Sütrack Eberspächer unveiled the new AC 420 G2 for minibuses with cooling capacity up to 13 kW, 15% less weight and a length reduced to 1,580 mm and the roof-mounted AC 515 G2 for midibuses, also reduced in weight and featuring standardised components that make installation even less complicated. In addition, the AC 515 G2 blower provides a virtually maintenance-free operation.

BusToCoach on-line Magazine - January / February 2014


Mercedes-Benz Vans unveiled the new Sprinter 4x4 with 4ETS full Electronic Traction System, Euro VI BlueTec diesel engine and new driver assistance systems

new Sprinter 4x4 of the MerTHE cedes-Benz Vans range made its public debut at 2,500 meters above sea

level in the Tyrolean Alps. It is a rather large vehicle which, thanks to an all-wheel drive combined with Electronic Stability Control (ESP), provides additional traction even in tough conditions. It’s an ideal vehicle for tourists transport in mountain resorts but also for workers in muddy construction yards. The Sprinter 4x4 is equipped with the fully Electronic Traction System 4ETS activated at the push of a button on the dashboard. This device provides torque variably that works in synergy with Adaptive ESP and ASR and also by taking advantage of the ABS sensors on the wheels. Although it is not an off-road vehicle, the Sprinter 4x4 is suitable for all types of terrains due to its body lifted by 110 mm at the front and by 80 mm at the rear. Depending on the engine variant, the ability to climb a slope is about 20 percent

higher than a Sprinter with conventional drive. And depending on the model, the four-wheel-drive system adds about 120 kg of extra weight, with minimal effect on the payload. It is powered by BlueTec diesel engines with AdBlue injection that comply with Euro VI emissions standard. It is possible to choose between the four-cylinder BlueTec 2.1 with 129 hp and 305 Nm of torque and the variant producing 163 hp and 360 Nm or the more powerful V6 3.0 BlueTec with 190 hp and 400 Nm. The transmission is the six-speed manual Eco Gear, but there is also the five-speed automatic option (on request). In terms of fuel consumption, there is a minimal difference compared to RWD Sprinter (0.4 to 0.8 litres more per 100 km). The vehicle is equipped with five new driver assistance systems: the Collision Prevention Assist, Blind Spot Assist, Highbeam Assist and Lane Keeping Assist. Crosswind Assist will follow in 2014.


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BusToCoach on-line Magazine - January / February 2014


The Sprinter 519 turns into a ‘VIP’ product by means of Tomassini Style. Original design, refined materials and care into every single detail over forty years the Tomassini FOR brand has been synonymous with quality, attention to details, original design and quality materials. These are the characteristics of all the accessory equipment made in the plant in Passignano sul Trasimeno, near Perugia, from school buses to service line minibuses to the tourist ‘Luxury’ and ‘VIP’ versions, for which the ability to customise the interiors reaches maximum levels. The Sprinter 519 VIPs presented in these pa-


Lenght mm 7,345 Width mm 1,960 Heigh mm 2,800 Internal height mm 1,910 Wheelbase mm 4,325 Front overhang mm 1,005 Rear overhang mm 2,015 Fuel tank litres 75 Luggage m3 1.2 Seats ‘VIP’ 9+1 Weight kg 5,000 Engine OM 642 DE30LA Displacement cc 2,987 Power cv (kW)/rpm 190 (140)/3,800 Torque Nm/rpm 440/1,600-2,600

ges is an excellent example of that. It is a 7.3-meter long vehicle whose original Mercedes bodywork has been completely modified. On the sides there are now open panoramic coloured double-glazed windows, the bottom end of the bodywork has been lowered with resin extentions and on the right side there is an electric sliding door with opening towards the rear, fitted with an anti-crushing safety edge, manufactured by Tomassini itself. The two doors on the rear end have been removed and replaced with a single door with pantograph opening, giving access to the 1.2 cubic meters of luggage compartment. The front bumper has also been modified

and it features inlayed fog lamps while on top of the original windshield an additional polarised glazing has been fitted to increase visibility upwards. Finally, an extra touch of elegance is provided by the chrome details in the front grille, mirror caps and wheel studs.

Once on board, the equipment in the passenger area leaves no doubts: we are in a ‘VIP’ zone. There are only nine seats to offer ample space and comfort without restrains. The seats, built by Gianangeli specifically for Tomassini,

are real armchairs measuring 50 cm in width, they are reclinable and feature double padding and leather upholstery. The first and third row seats can be turned around to create two ‘living room’ areas with folding table mounted on the wall.

On the wall next to the seats, there are the buttons to control the electric blinds for the windows and right below there are the 12 and 220 volt outlets plus an HDMI plug on each cabinet/table. The entire interior makes use of thermo-a-

coustic insulation, while Alcantara coverings are used for the ceiling and tiles and quilted leather on the walls, window pillars and air ducts in the ceiling. Personal sets include vents, speaker and individual lights. General illumination is provided by LED lights on the aisle side on the pillars on the rear, two rows of white LED light on the roof and just as many variable colour LED lights next to the air ducts. The air conditioning system is a 13 kW Autoclima unit mounted on the roof that is electrically controlled. There is also an electrically controlled hatch on the roof and a modern audio/video system inclusive of Blu-ray player (next to the refrigerator cabinet positioned below the dashboard), subwoofer to the right of the driver seat and two LCD monitors: one 19-inch behind

the driver and one 32-inch on the rear wall. The driver’s area is basically the same as the original fitted on Sprinter models, embellished with paint on the dashboard to match the interior and made more comfortable by a seat upholstered in leather. The left door is also covered in leather. Worth of notice is the design of the transversal element added at the base of the additional windscreen, featuring a round centre which houses the spotlights and the climate controller. Everything else is in the hands of Mercedes mechanics. For the Sprinter 519 CDI F 43L/50 it entails a three-litre 190 horsepower engine, six-speed manual gearbox, mechanical independent wheels suspension on the front and all types of safety devices.

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BusToCoach on-line Magazine - January / February 2014


Lenght mm 12,195 12,875 Width mm 2,550 Heigh mm 3,500 Wheelbase mm 6,150 6,830 Front overhang mm 2,705 Rear overhang mm 3,340 Turning circle mm 20,528 22,096 Fuel tank litres 330 AdBlue tank litres 50 Luggage m3 7.4 9.4 Weight max kg 19,100



cm lower than the FHD2 series, that 20 is the basic feature of the FMD2 models that reach up to 3.5 metres in height,

including the roof-mounted air conditioning unit. They are multi-purpose vehicles, suitable both for intercity as well as ‘light’ and economic tour service. Available in two different lengths (12.2 and 12.9 metres), with a maximum capacity respectively of 55 and 59 seats plus guide and


Seats max n. 55/59+1+1 Internal height mm 1,940 Aisle height mm 1,230


Type seats VDL Class 90 A.C. automatic 30 kW Heater convectors Glazing double Audio-video Lcd monitors Fridge 63 litres Toilette optional Wheelchair area optional

No obstacles ikewise the new Futura L range, it features a flat floor, without high bases

for seats mount. The floor on the FMD2 is at 1,230 mm from the ground, thus contributing to easier cleaning, weight saving and providing even better accessibility. The only exception to the flat floor is two low steps to access the last two rows of seats at the rear end. At the front, however, a sloping corridor section was used to level up the driver’s platform at 1,060 mm with the floor. Interior upholstery were chosen based on functionality, thus making extensive use of PVC, alongside Titan for the ceiling and the exterior of the overhead compartments and preformed polyurethane elements. The VDL Class 90 seats have reclining backrest and come with folding armrest, rear han-

dle and two-points seat belt. Ceiling lights as well as lights in the individual sets in the overhead compartments are all LED. Individual sets include also ducts for the air supplied by the roof-mounted unit with 30 kW cooling capacity, powered by two compressors moun-

ted on the engine. A Spheros 300 provides additional heating over underfloor convectors. The driver benefits from an air suspension Isri seat and the same dashboard found on the Futura FHD2, with a display at the centre and controls on the steering wheel. To the right

there are the radio/CD Bosch Professional system, VDO digital tachograph and the space to fit the navigator. The climate controller and the gear selector (if automatic) are located on the control panel beneath the window (with defroster) to the left.

driver, these vehicles differ from the FHD2 model for the black headlight units instead of silver, and for the entire front end, including the rooftop, painted the base colour to match the rest of the vehicle, instead of black. All the new Futura models are built on the characteristic modular system and likewise the FMD2 have a high-strength stainless steel chassis, side walls, front and rear ends, while the roof is made of sandwich panels with two stiff roll bars, resulting in low weight and good protection against corrosion. Low cost is also due to the dimension of the kinematic chain, whose choice is restricted between the two lower power options of the 10.8-litre DAF MX engine: the 326 and 369 hp (the 440 hp is used exclusively on the FHD2), respectively with maximum torque of 1,400 and 1,600 Nm. Euro VI classification is achieved through the combined use of EGR exhaust gas recirculation, SCR catalytic converter and particulate filter. The EcoShift ZF 6 S 1 6 11 B O s i x speed manual gearbox with SGS cable control and integrated retarder comes as standard equipment, but it is possible to opt for the ZF AS Tronic 12-speed semi-automatic gearbox or the ZF EcoLife 6-speed fully-automatic gearbox. The electronically controlled EBS braking system also includes ESC (Electronic Stability Control) and air suspension with independent front axle and electronic level control (ECAS). The Futura FMD2 is also available in the variant for disabled passengers, with wheelchair area, larger rear door and Car Oil RPB 35.11 cassette lift integrated into the stairs. Other optional features include Fogmaker fire extinguisher system in the engine compartment with the cylinders located in the luggage compartment.

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