Mellor Coachcraft is launching a high floor version of its Strata bus with up to 19 seats. The Strata HF is aimed primarily at the local authority and community transport sectors. Based on the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter chassis cab, the new model is fully accessible with a passenger lift at the rear. It has all the styling features of the low floor version launched earlier this year and, like its stablemate, uses lightweight composite materials throughout. Attention has been paid to passenger comfort and the internal space has been maximised to allow 2+2 seating of 450mm wide seats on a completely flat floor with no slope and no internal steps. Now at the end of the design phase, the first vehicle is soon due to enter the manufacturer’s Rochdale production line.
The Strata HF has been fully engineered in CAD and has a stainless steel body frame and an interior designed to be modern and stylish, fitted with wipe clean and hard wearing GRP mouldings throughout. It will come in medium and long wheelbase versions, with the high capacity models to be fitted with a composite floor system. The two step entry with forward opening inswing door combines with a new design of header panel, which can be used as overhead storage above the cab or incorporate destination equipment for stage carriage type work. To minimise downtime after minor accidents, all skirt panels and bumpers are bolt-on for quick replacement. The medium wheelbase version will accommodate up to 16 seats or up to six wheelchairs. The long wheelbase Strata HF can have up to 19 seats or up to seven wheelchairs. Both variants will be fitted with full length tracking and will have either an underfloor or inboard wheelchair lift mounted at the rear.