MCI unveils redesigned buses at UMA

Posted on January 8, 2018

Photo courtesy of MCI
Photo courtesy of MCI
Motor Coach Industries (MCI), the U.S. subsidiary of New Flyer Industries Inc., is bringing its industry-leading vehicle innovations in passenger seating capacity, interior ambience, unprecedented passenger accessibility, Advanced Driver Assistance System (ADAS) technology, a 35-foot J coach and a move into all-electric coaches by 2020, to Booth 479, Jan. 6-10 at UMA Motorcoach EXPO 2018 in San Antonio.

“MCI is transforming the future of private motor coach transportation in North America, and we’ll have quite a story to tell in San Antonio,” said MCI President Ian Smart. “Profitability-per-mile, new standards in quality and service and greener power options – MCI has an exciting 2018 planned.”


The new MCI J4500: With a completely redesigned, roomier interior and the capacity to seat 60 passengers comfortably, the 2018 J4500 is ready for its official industry debut. The latest MCI J4500 coach now offers best-in-class legroom, a larger lavatory and optional rear window that transforms the back-of-cabin passenger experience. Updated lighting throughout the interior includes an optional programmable color LED interior package with extensive trim choices to accommodate both operator and passenger branding. The J4500 now features upscale interior packages that coordinate seating, flooring and trim with options that include wood-grain and carbon fiber selections. A reconfigured quieter and more efficient air intake system is behind the advancements in floor space, and drivers will particularly appreciate a high-definition instrument panel and cockpit for improved comfort, better visibility and easier access to diagnostic information.

“Response to the J4500 model has been exceptional, with strong orders for the year ahead,” said Patrick Scully, MCI executive vice president of sales and marketing. “UMA EXPO attendees who haven’t seen the 2018 J4500 or the new D45 CRT LE will be impressed.”

The MCI D45 CRT LE: The all new high-capacity MCI D45 CRT LE commuter coach is designed to make boarding easier and faster for all passengers, especially those using mobility devices. The CRT LE low level entry vestibule accessible by a second door at the midpoint of the coach includes seating for five passengers, allowing for up to two secured mobility devices and an attendant, and high-capacity 54-passenger seating configuration overall, with seating for 52 when there are two passengers using a mobility device. Additionally, the forward-door entry opens to an ergonomically-designed spiral entryway. This combined ease-of-entry technology improves the speed of passenger boarding and disembarking to decrease dwell time. In December, AC Transit, California’s third largest agency, serving 13 cities and adjacent unincorporated areas in Alameda and Contra Costa counties near in the San Francisco Bay Area, began running a three-week live demo of the groundbreaking MCI D45 CRT LE commuter coach offering free rides in exchange for passenger feedback. 

Leadership in Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS): MCI knows road incidents can affect operators’ bottom lines and reputation; that’s why it has made significant investments in Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) to help prevent accidents and vehicle damage. On the J4500 model, MCI now offers the optional Bendix Wingman Advanced system combining adaptive cruise control with collision mitigation technology. Among other options, MCI offers a powerful 360-degree camera system that can broadcast and record interior and exterior driving conditions in real time, and enhances visibility during low speed maneuvering.

MCI maintains a leadership position in ADAS, and plans to add significantly to its technology portfolio in the coming years, including the next generation Bendix Wingman Fusion, its most advanced safety system, adding the functionality of lane departure, collision mitigation with Stationary Vehicle Braking (SVB) and overall improved system responsiveness. MCI plans to have a detailed discussion of ADAS technology throughout UMA EXPO including features available now, in 2019 and beyond.

Reliability Driven in all-electric. With New Flyer’s decades of experience in battery-electric, MCI is also taking the lead to deliver best-in-class power and reliable performance of its all-electric series of J4500 and D45 CRT LE coaches with production planned for January 2020. “MCI’s all-electric development efforts are focused on high-torque and long-range to power coaches efficiently at both high and low speeds,” said Brent Maitland, MCI Vice President of Marketing and Product Planning.  “With New Flyer’s all-electric experience behind us, MCI will provide the reliable, workhorse coach that operators are waiting for and can trust to perform as promised.”

Photo courtesy of MCI
Photo courtesy of MCI

Not MCI’s first 35-foot coach: Operators who have enjoyed the amenities, comforts, luxury and reliability of the 45-foot MCI J4500 will now have all of that in a 35-foot model aimed at smaller groups. The 35-foot prototype is presently in testing with demo units ready in early 2018, with production planned for January 2019. This new J coach will sport the same attractive design and common components of its larger sibling while offering best in class payload and a basic 40-seat configuration with an option for 44 – more than any other 35-foot coach currently on the market.

An even better sales and service story in 2018: With a pledge for system-wide improvements at MCI Sales and Service Centers, a San Francisco Bay Area location opened in November in Hayward, CA. Right in the heart of one of the busiest motor coach markets in North America, the location represents a $3 million investment with a new layout and parts delivery system that will become standard throughout all seven of MCI Sales and Service Centers.

MCI Parts now part of the NFI Parts umbrella brand: In October, the parts operations of New Flyer and MCI combined under the NFI Parts brand. This starts with more comprehensive parts offerings, a larger distribution network, strong partnerships with a broader supply base and the opportunity to share technologies and best practices between two historic operations in the motor coach and bus industry – MCI and New Flyer. This integration will occur over the coming months with even better performance on parts shipping and availability at all service center facilities. MCI staff will be on hand during UMA Expo to discuss enhancements to MCI’s online PartsStore.

MCI’s role as a trainer: In the past year alone, MCI Academy’s live and online training and certification division has won major industry recognition to create future generations of motor coach technical specialists. In July, MCI Academy became the first training provider in the motor coach industry to receive ASE accreditation, and in October, won the Automotive Training Managers Council (ATMC) ‘Grand Award’ for its industry-leading HVAC coursework.  

Scott Crawford, MCI’s Technician Training Manager, will explain how the MCI Academy can create career paths for your mechanics, drivers and staff, and how maintenance shops can benefit from the coursework offered through the program that rounds out MCI’s comprehensive customer support at a presentation on Monday from 2:30 – 3:30 p.m. Please check UMA’s Education Session listing for the room number. There will be time for Q&As.

Thinking pre-owned? Think MCI: Mitch Gurlanick, Vice President of Pre-Owned Coaches, has selected three road-ready, pre-owned coaches to showcase at UMA EXPO. Many operators rely on both new and pre-owned coaches in their fleets, and only MCI offers a complete refurbishing of post-2007 J4500 models back to new through its popular Re-Energized program.

MCI marks a birthday; join the celebration: MCI turns 85 in 2018 and plans to mark its milestone with commemorative “MCI-ritas” on Sunday from 4:30 – 6:00 p.m. and refreshments and snacks Monday from 1:30 to 4:30 p.m. Also, motor coach operators will have chance at a prize drawing for a trip for two to New York City Monday at 4:00 p.m. (Qualified entrants must be present to win).

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