A further ten Optare Versas are on their way to Transdev Blazefield. Eight are for Harrogate using the new Harrogate Connect brand and two for Burnley using the popular Starship brand.
The exterior livery of the Harrogate Connect vehicles is an eye catching combination of black and burgundy, while the Burnley vehicles retain their familiar Starship orange and yellow paint scheme.
Each vehicle is powered by the Mercedes-Benz OM904LA Euro 5 SCR engine rated at 115kW which drives through the Allison 2100 series five speed fully automatic transmission; a well proven combination, perfectly balanced to return exceptional performance and fuel efficiency. The Optare standard Ecodrive instrument panel which provides the driver with direct feedback as to how their driving style is influencing fuel consumption is an added aid to reducing environmental impact.
All round disc brakes combined with a KLAM electromagnetic retarder and ABS assure optimum efficiency and safety in operation, while the full air suspension gives excellent ride and handling characteristics.
As with the previous 25 vehicles which were delivered in 2007 and 2008, the 11 metre version is once again the preference, and each is fitted with 36 seats; 30 moquette trimmed Esteban Civic V3 seats with integrated headrests, and six tip-up seats in the wheelchair/buggy bays.
A Compak powered ramp is installed in the entrance step platform enabling deployment by the driver without the need to leave their seat should wheelchair occupants, or mums with buggies need to board or alight, and front end kneeling ensures an easy step height or ramp angle is achieved.
Mobitec LED electronic destination and route number displays are fitted to the front, side and rear giving passengers waiting at the bus stop, a clear and unmistakable indication of the operating route as the vehicle approaches, and a multi-camera CCTV system is installed for security and passenger safety.
Chris Wise, Optare Commercial Director said “It is pleasing to see more Versas being delivered to Transdev Blazefield. I think the modern body styling coupled with the eye catching exterior paint schemes works exceptionally well. We have worked closely with Blazefield to ensure that both inside and out, these vehicles are designed for maximum passenger appeal, and I’m sure this will serve to increase ridership”.
Nigel Eggleton, Transdev Blazefield Marketing Director agreed adding “We need these new buses to turn heads. A combination of excellent design from Optare combined with the ‘wow’ factor of the new colours will ensure recent growth in the Harrogate and Burnley markets continues and accelerates.