Motor Coach Industries (MCI), a subsidiary of New Flyer Industries Inc., the largest bus and motorcoach manufacturer in North America, announced that Houston METRO (Metropolitan Transit Authority of Harris County) expands its high-occupancy vehicle (HOV) regional service, accepting delivery of 10 new MCI Commuter Coaches.
The 10 coaches are options from a contract initially awarded to MCI in 2014 and have an approximate total value of $6 million. Consistent with the contract, MCI delivered 95 coaches in 2014.
“With each passing year, the MCI Commuter Coach is becoming the public transit industry’s top solution for commuter service in the most cost effective, environmentally friendly way possible,” said Patrick Scully, MCI executive VP, sales and marketing. “Coach transit is extremely flexible and provides communities with immediate transportation options to fit their commuter operations.”
METRO’s new coaches are equipped with wheelchair lifts, Kiel seats with three-point passenger seatbelts and slide-out baggage bay bike racks. Equipped with a Cummins ISX engine and Allison B500 transmission, they are powered by the newest EPA-mandated clean-diesel engine technology.
Operating from Park & Ride locations throughout the greater Houston area and leveraging HOV lanes, METRO's new coaches allow for the expansion of its commuter express services.
The MCI Commuter Coach, which is Buy America-compliant and Altoona-tested, is specifically designed for express service and highway speeds. It offers a rugged, semi-monocoque structure which elevates passengers and drivers above traffic. In addition to seat belts, safety systems include Electronic Stability Control (ESC), tire pressure monitoring and a fire suppression system.
Since 2001, METRO has purchased 381 MCI Commuter Coaches, including 122 diesel-electric hybrid MCI Commuter Coaches. MCI is the first intercity coach manufacturer to offer an over-the-road intercity coach in diesel-electric hybrid as well as CNG to public transit agencies.