[IMAGE]tmc-6.jpg[/IMAGE]Elkhart, Ind.-based TMC Group Inc. has added the Delray Beach, Fla.-based Stallion Bus Industries' 30-passenger Pony and 40-passenger Stallion buses to its product offerings, company officials reported. TMC is the producer of Ameritrans vehicles, a full line of cutaways customized for the hotel, nursing home and limousine industries.
The move expands the TMC line and increases exposure of the Stallion brand.
To better meet the needs of the motorcoach industry, TMC and Stallion Bus are working together to supply the buses to an industry segment looking for smaller vehicles.
The agreement is also a response to a recent trend among major motorcoach operators sizing down to smaller coaches, tailoring vehicles to the size of the average group for a more economical and cohesive experience for the customer. Increasingly, carriers are opting to use 40-passenger coaches versus the larger 55-passenger vehicles, resulting in a spike in orders for 35-foot coaches, said one company spokesperson.
The collaboration to supply parts for the new bus models took place between Ameritrans and Stallion Bus in February. The chassis is supplied by Freightliner, Higer manufactures the body and TMC assembles the buses. Based in Shanghai, Higer is one of China's largest bus manufacturers, producing 16,000 buses per year.
TMC currently builds approximately 450 units per year and expects to increase production to 650 units with the addition of the Stallion bus product line. In 2010, TMC expects to deliver 25 new Stallion model buses to the motorcoach industry.
In addition, Stallion has delivered its first five city transit buses and will introduce a CNG-fueled city bus/transit product in the first quarter of 2011.