An order for 20 buses valued at £3.6m has been placed with Optare by Midlands-based publicly listed transport group, Rotala.
The order is for 15 Versa hybrids, acquired with a contribution of £1.7m from the Government’s Green Bus Fund, three Solo SRs and two Versas, which are diesel only.
All the buses use Mercedes-Benz diesel engines and in the hybrids the engine is combined with the Siemens/Bluways hybrid system using ultra-capacitors.
All of the new buses are to the same high specification as the four Solo SRs delivered last year for the Signature branded services centred on Solihull. They feature Esteban leather seats, blue LED underseat lighting, an ACIS Real Time Information system, and Wi-Fi connectivity. Hanover LED destination equipment is fitted along with a full CCTV camera system.
Simon Dunn, the CEO of Rotala, remarked: “The luxurious specification is aimed at making bus travel more attractive to the public by creating a pleasant and comfortable environment in which to travel. Other features like Wi-Fi connectivity further improve the customer experience. Additionally the usage of hybrid power provides both an environmentally friendly option and also reduces fuel consumption.”
Optare’s commercial director Chris Wise, said: “This is a significant endorsement of our product from a very progressive and highly regarded independent operator. Rotala’s desire to make bus travel more attractive to passengers makes Optare a natural choice”.