Volvo launches BRT bus in China3/18/08
Volvo Buses launched the Volvo 7800 articulated bus at the large bus exhibition Busworld in Shanghai, which recently concluded. It is an 18-meter-long low-floor bus with a 9-liter engine mounted on the side at the front of the bus. The chassis Volvo B9SLA, with a different body, is being used with great success in the BRT system Transantiago in Chile, where Volvo delivered more than 1,500 such buses.
Bus Rapid Transit is a solution to traffic problems in many of the world’s cities. It involves creating bus-based transport systems using buses with high passenger capacity, bus models and stations that facilitate rapid on and off loading and a traffic solution in which buses have priority.
Increasingly more BRT systems are being built in China and Volvo’s new bus is suited for such traffic. It can carry 160 passengers, has four wide entries and a low floor through the entire bus to facilitate on and off loading.
Most of the chassis is delivered as assembly kits from Volvo’s central chassis plant in Borås, Sweden. Local components are added and the chassis is assembled in Sunwin’s plant in Shanghai, where the body is also produced. The body is basically the same used in Volvo’s Chinese 12-meter buses, but the front and rear are new and the interior is fitted to suit articulated buses.
The city bus company, Sunwin Bus, is equally and jointly owned by Volvo and the Chinese partner SAIC. The company builds city buses on Volvo chassis that are sold under the Volvo brand as well as on local chassis whereby the buses are sold under the Sunwin name.
The company has now received an order for 395 Sunwin buses for delivery to Qingdao City where the Olympic sailing competitions will be decided in the autumn. The buses, which are 10.5 and 12 meters in length will be built in Sunwin’s plants in Qingdao and Shanghai and delivered in the spring.