Next Generation BUSiness.
2013 Mercedes-Benz MOT bus fair in Mannheim.
Every two years, Mercedes-Benz Buses at the Mannheim plant presents a vision of what bus drivers and contractors as well as public transport users and planners can expect over the next few years from the brand with the three-pointed star. And what the MOT 2013 has to offer underlines the competence of the brand.
No other manufacturer can offer such a broad range of products, such a wide spectrum of customer service or comparable know-how as the experts from Mannheim. The dominant topic at the MOT 2013 was Euro VI. The emissions level to be introduced as mandatory from 2014 has been standard for the whole Mercedes-Benz Omnibus fleet for a considerable time.
There were approximately 6200 visitors from more than 20 countries, which proves how popular the MOT is: the fair they all bustled around lasted for four days and covered a 3500 square meters exhibition area in the Mercedes-Benz delivery building, which had been redecorated especially for the MOT and extended by a light-weight construction factory building. Enough space for visitors, and especially for the stars of the show – the entire Mercedes-Benz Buses fleet: Sprinter minibuses, two Citaro variants, the Intouro, the Tourismo, the standard-bearer Travego, and the new Tourismo K which is particularly attractive thanks to its compact dimensions. Naturally all of them comply with the Euro VI standard. And there were also many models waiting to be test-driven outdoors. This was another point showing that the MOT is more than just an exhibition.
Mercedes-Benz, as ever, demonstrates its brilliance with futuristic technology. Mercedes-Benz is also a ground-breaker in the fields of science, trends and futurology. Not surprisingly, the seats at the symposium on trends in tomorrow's public transport were highly sought-after. First-class speakers and enthralling topics made the symposium the second highlight at the MOT. "We as bus manufacturers take our responsibility seriously and are working on providing the best and most cost-effective products, and dealing with tomorrow's public transport challenges today," said Hartmut Schick, Head of Daimler Buses, summing up the event. In keeping with this, Gustav Tuschen, Head of Development at Daimler Buses, spoke of the potential and opportunities of conventional drive systems in commercial vehicles.
He was supported by the lecture given by Professor Ralph Pütz from Landshut University, who said that the Euro VI buses with their technically perfect implementation achieve even better tolerance figures than the previously set tolerance levels. So on the subject of Euro VI, Mercedes-Benz achieves outstanding top marks.
As good as new.
There is news on the used vehicle front – with the new BusStore brand and a correspondingly broad selection of buses from all age groups and brands. In the service sector, OMNIplus is a powerful service-providing brand that also offers individual service packages – not only at the MOT, but particularly in everyday use. Furthermore, the FleetBoard experts at their telematics stand demonstrated the new performance analysis as a tool for reducing fuel consumption even further. When it comes to ecology and efficiency, the Mercedes-Benz Buses Euro VI fleet is admirably set up in every way possible.
Top of the class.
And naturally, one more thing must not be overlooked on the subject of top marks: the 2013 Bus of the Year. The Citaro was presented at the MOT with additional bodywork options: the Citaro Low Entry (LE) versions in the Ü and MÜ models are now even suitable for long-distance journeys.
Cinema-style seats in the rear provide real travel comfort, as all the testers agreed unanimously after having assessed the Mercedes-Benz workhorse with its new fittings. Air vents, reading lamps and service buttons for the passenger mean even more comfort and well-being for passengers.
All around the bus.
Quite unassumingly, all sorts of delicacies complement the programme so as to cosset and satisfy the culinary needs of the most discerning exhibition visitor. The Palatinate and the Central Pyrenees regions had their own stands offering culinary and tourist highlights from their regions besides local specialities. A colourful supporting programme rounded off the successful event: the Drivers' Club Lounge offered exclusive membership, the Mercedes-Benz Mannheim company-owned sales and service outlet offered all sorts of attractive merchandising based on the three-pointed star, and older kids were able to prove their knowledge at the Daimler Knowledge Community. Furthermore, iPad artist Stefan Wirkus entertained with charming caricatures and the Creative Corner was aimed mainly at the ladies accompanying the predominately male, technically oriented visitors, whilst Clemens Brinkmann showed people how to mould miniature buses out of marzipan.
Next generation bus drivers.
On Friday afternoon there was suddenly more activity at the fair. It was as if the last school bell had suddenly opened the gates: more and more children streamed into the building, especially to the stands specifically aimed at them. But the buses too were stormed and examined in detail by the smaller visitors.
After such an experience, tomorrow's potential bus drivers and contractors are just as likely as their parents to be fans of the Mercedes brand – especially as they have already come to love Mercedes-Benz buses.