Daimler at IAA, Hanover

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The Mercedes-Benz Future Bus will make its show debut at IAA, Hanover. Daimler
The Mercedes-Benz Future Bus will make its show debut at IAA, Hanover. Daimler

Daimler to present Future Bus and a range of product developments at German biennial trade show

GERMANY What Daimler describes as the future of urban mobility solutions, the partially-autonomous Mercedes-Benz Future Bus with CityPilot (CBW, July 26, 2016) will be at IAA, Hanover in September. Future Bus is neither a concept nor a visionary vehicle, says the manufacturer. It is the town bus of tomorrow and has already successfully concluded its testing in real traffic situations.

The Mercedes-Benz Citaro NGT powered by a M936G natural-gas engine will also make its IAA debut. Based on the OM936, the vertically-installed six-cylinder M936G is 302hp with a peak torque of 1,200Nm between 1,200rpm and 1,600rpm.

Eight roof-mounted gas tanks have a total volume of 1,720 litres and are made of a composite material with a plastic core and are coated with carbon fibre and glass fibre layers. There new design combined with the compact M936G help lower the additional weight inherent in a gas-fuelled vehicle compared to a diesel-driven equivalent. That’s around 485kg in a rigid vehicle. A standard specification Citaro NGT can carry up to 96 passengers while a Citaro G NGT artic can accommodate 153.

The Sprinter City 65 to be exhibited has a new, weight-optimised retarder which, despite offering the same functionality and braking performance, now weighs 15% less than its predecessor. Also new is a combined pushchair and wheelchair space in the 12-seat saloon (plus four tip-ups), which will be a compulsory component for urban regular-service buses as of July 1, 2017.

The Spinter range has been extended with the addition of an ex factory vehicle featuring a gross vehicle weight of 5.5 tonnes. For the mid-range weight variants of the Sprinter Mobility, Sprinter Transfer and Sprinter Travel minibus model series, the maximum payload is therefore increased by around 150kg.

Weight-optimised M1 Sprinter Mobility minibuses will be delivered in the second half of the year. The use of composite materials in the airline floor rail system means payload increases of up to 35kg depending on model.

The 10,000th Mercedes-Benz Intouro, available as a two-axle model in three lengths, will be handed over at IAA. It’s also the 10th anniversary of the launch of the Tourismo, marked by a 13m Tourismo M equipped with 48 Travel Star Eco seats with Luxline upholstery and height-adjustable head restraints.

A 13.3m super high-deck Setra TopClass S516HDH will be on display with 21 Voyage Ambassador seats in a 1+1 configuration. As well as rotating, the seats have generously-proportioned folding leather armrests, stowage compartments and folding drinks holders. The vehicle’s specification also includes ambient lighting and a TopSky Panorama glass roof.

Integrated LED headlamps have been introduced for the first time and will be on show in the S516HDH, a 44-seat ComfortClass S516HD and the Citaro NGT. Dipped-beam and main-beam are in a single housing and are available for all Setra TopClass 500 and ComfortClass 500 vehicles as well as for the Mercedes-Benz Citaro.

All versions of the Mercedes-Benz Tourismo as well as the Setra ComfortClass 500, TopClass 500 and double-decker S431DT (an 80 seater will also be on display as will be a 48-seat S516MD) can also now be optionally equipped ex factory with a router and antenna.

Coach MediaRouter incorporates two slots for LTE-capable SIM cards and a pair of USB ports. As well as providing an internet connection, it ensures that users can use their devices to access media stored locally in the vehicle thus reducing dependency on the internet.

Mercedes-Benz and Setra will be presenting seats, different aspects of which such as the headrest, backrest, seat cushion and side elements are covered in a composition leather material. Colours available match the current material collection. New style luxury head restraints will also be on show.

Daimler describes the 14.64m Setra S418LE business that will be on display as the “giant for rural-service lines.” The bus has space for up to 100 passengers, a maximum of 63 of them seated. Various door configurations can be specified. The show vehicle will have 57 Setra Transit seats, side kneeling and manual folding ramp.

Completing the vehicle line up will be a Euro 3 Wrightbus International-bodied BharatBenz OF917RFC school bus, a product of the Chennai-based joint venture in India. Daimler describes the vehicle as “applicable in almost ever climate zone and on every street.”

Other show highlights include the ‘Fuel Efficiency Package’ six-cylinder inline OM470 engine with increased torque and power in the middle engine speed range as well as a reduction in nominal engine speed from 1,800rpm to 1,600rpm. Fuel savings are 2.5% for coach, 2.4% for interurban vehicles and 2% for low-floor articulated. A new top-of-the-range variant with a power output of 456hp and powerful maximum torque of 2,200Nm is also being added.

OMNIplus presenting several new products including 24-hour service with Telediagnosis from 2017, designed to reduce downtime as a result of breakdowns. Telediagnosis is installed as standard in all new coaches with customers paying to have it operational. FleetBoard telematics enables the vehicle to identify itself, provide a precise location using geo-coordinates which are sent to the nearest OMNIplus service centre, and not only transfer the current error code, but also any other saved codes.

OMNIplus is also developing Bus Depot Management where authorised service centres work at the customer’s own workshop. Aimed at fleet operators, it would be built into a long term maintenance and repairs contract, for example, as part of an invitation to tender.