In addition to its Orion E electric bus, Mellor Coachcraft is launching its Strata HF bus with up to 19 seats at the Commercial Vehicle Show. It will be on the Webasto Stand (5D10). The high floor vehicle, aimed primarily at the local authority and community transport sectors, is a fully accessible vehicle based on the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter chassis cab, which, like its low floor stablemate, is designed to capitalise on the use of lightweight composite materials throughout. The construction helps to offer a capacity of up to 19 seated passengers or as many as seven wheelchairs. 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. It also features a full width electric sun blind, dedicated driver’s storage compartment and a luggage pen. An integrated reversing camera, monitor and cyclist protection system are just some of the safety features that will come as standard.
Strata HF has been fully engineered in CAD and has a stainless steel body frame. Its interior is designed to be modern and stylish, fitted with wipe clean and hard wearing GRP mouldings throughout. Medium and long wheelbase options are expected to be launched and the higher capacity versions are 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 convenient overhead storage above the cab. Alternatively, it can incorporate destination equipment for stage carriage 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 to offer the ultimate in seating flexibility and will have a rear mounted underfloor or inboard lift.
Mellor MD, John Randerson, said, ‘Our approach with the new model has been to offer our customers greater value. Visitors to the CV Show will be able to see first-hand the leap forward we have made both in terms of internal space and the quality of finish we have been able to achieve. The Sprinter base vehicle has a reputation for offering performance, robustness and a low whole life cost which, coupled with this version of Strata, makes it an affordable choice in a number of different sectors.’