Volgren has received a major export order for 29 Australian-built low-floor city buses from Tokyo Metropolitan Government Bureau of Transport
Volgren has received a major export order for 29 Australian-built low-floor city buses from Tokyo Metropolitan Government Bureau of Transport.
The order is Volgren’s single biggest deal since entering the Japanese market in 2014 with its articulated route bus.
This latest partnership with the Tokyo Metropolitan Government, which operates about 1450 buses in the Greater Tokyo region, is one of four operator relationships that Volgren has established, including its ongoing association with Japan’s largest bus operator, the Nishitetsu Railway Company.
Volgren chief executive Peter Dale says the entry of the Volgren low-floor city buses, to be built on a Scania N280UB E6 chassis, would be the first of its kind in Japan.
“In a short space of time, Volgren have built a reputation in Japan for manufacturing high- quality, niche vehicles in areas that local manufacturers currently do not supply into,” he says.
“There’s currently no local Japanese bus body manufacturer producing complete low-floor buses, with the only other option being buses from Europe, which are non- compliant to Japanese regulations and not equipped with any Japanese- specific equipment upon delivery to the customer.”
“The low-floor route buses for Tokyo Metropolitan Government, to be built right here in Dandenong, will be 100 per cent compliant to their vehicle specifications, including their complex on-board passenger information systems, ticketing equipment and emergency exit requirements. This ready-to-roll solution is well received by operators and is one of the key planks to our success in Japan.”
Dale says Volgren’s engineering quality and technological innovation means its buses are now desired throughout the world.
“Tokyo Metropolitan Government is one of the most progressive bus operators in the world. They’ve recently taken delivery of the first Toyota fuel cell bus and, by ordering a complete low-floor solution through Volgren, they’re sending a message to local suppliers – update and be more flexible to passenger requirements or we’ll go elsewhere,” he says.
The complete low-floor city buses will improve ease of access, increase capacity and better cater to Tokyo’s ageing population.
The first of two homologation units, ordered by Scania Japan, will go into build soon as part of the pre-registration process. Production of the remaining buses will commence in May and be completed by August 2018.
“This ready-to-roll solution is one of the key planks to our success in Japan”