Buses India, a division of Volvo Eicher (VE) Commercial Vehicles Limited, has launched
the next-gen Volvo 9600 platform. For the company, it is a significant
milestone in its over two-decade old India journey.
first offerings on this platform include a factory-built sleeper and seater
coaches in 15m 6x2; and 13.5m 4x2 configurations. The sleeper coaches that were
unveiled to the media at the Hosakote plant near Bengaluru in Karnataka in both
the 15m and 13.5m variants are both modern and stylish, thereby setting a benchmark
in luxury and comfort.
15m seater tall boy designed coach has a passenger capacity of 55, whereas the
sleeper coach has 40 berths. The seater and sleeper applications incorporate
15.1 cu.m and 9.2 cu.m of luggage space respectively. The 13.5m coach seats up
to 47 passengers, while the sleeper variant hosts 36 berths. The corresponding
luggage space for the seater and sleeper variants are 13.6 cu.m and 8.1 cu.m
sleeper coaches were launched in the presence of Vinod Aggarwal, MD & CEO, VE
Commercial Vehicles, Akash Passey, President - Bus Division at VECV and Suresh
Chettiar, VP and Business Head at Volvo Bus India, besides several other senior
told the media that the recent pandemic had affected the bus industry in a vry
adverse manner. From 65,000 units per annum, the bus sales slipped to as low as
10,000 before climbing up 18,000 units last year. He said that in the first
four months of this fiscal, the sales were around 5,000 units per month. Though
inter- city luxury buses have a small share in the overall bus market in India,
he expected the share of theses buses to be around 800 to 1000 units per annum.
It is this segment that VECV is targeting with its brand new Volvo 9600 buses.
said the Volvo 9600 takes the “next step in luxury, comfort, and safety -values
that all of us associate with Volvo Buses.” He did not mention that investment
that had gone into making this all-new 9600 platform but mentioned that the
company invests around Rs 400 crore to Rs 500 crore every year for product
development and other CV related work.
Passey, President, Bus Division, VECV, said, “The Volvo 9600 platform merges
award winning bus design, technology and manufacturing processes with our
successful ‘Make-In-India’ journey. As the bus industry recovers from a very
tough period, Bus Operators continue to count on us to deliver solutions that
address the aspirations of inter-city passengers for safe, luxurious, and
globally contemporary coaches.
its predecessors, the coaches on the Volvo 9600 platform will be manufactured
at the state-of-the-art Hosakote plant, that has a track record of producing
fully built Volvo premium buses since 2008.
the heart of the Volvo 9600 platform is the tried, tested, powerful and
fuel-efficient Volvo D8K(8-litre) engine, delivering a power of 350hp@2200 RPM
and a peak torque of 1350 Nm@ 1200-1600 RPM. The fuel-efficient engine along
with its purpose-developed drivetrain is designed to minimize TCO and maximize
uptime for bus operators. The chassis includes the I-Shift automated manual
gearbox, electronic braking system (EBS) Hill start aid and Electronic
Stability Program(ESP) systems.
9600 platform is extremely driver friendly. It has an all-new ergonomically
designed curved dashboard with controls for easy accessibility. Further,
air-suspended seats with adjustable headrest ensure a fatigue-free experience
for the driver.
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