Optare wins £1.9 million contract to support low carbon Manchester fleet

24 June 2010  •  Author(s): Optare plc

Optare plc, which recently announced a £13 million contract win to supply a fleet of up to 66 hybrid buses to operate in Greater Manchester, has now also confirmed the Repair and Maintenance contract award, worth up to £1.9 million, to provide in-service support for the buses.

Greater Manchester Integrated Transport Authority (GMITA) awarded the five-year full Repair and Maintenance contract to cover the Optare hybrid buses that will start entering service later this year. The Authority’s hybrid fleet, which will be one of the largest in the country, will be made up of Optare Solo, Solo SR, Versa and Tempo models.

All the buses will feature a diesel-electric hybrid driveline and will be equipped with Optare’s Eco Drive system, which encourages optimal driver behaviour. The latest telematics technology combining a passenger counting device, real time information, CCTV and vehicle diagnostics in a single integrated system will also be installed.

“Optare’s position at the forefront of newly emerging ‘green’ technologies makes us a natural partner for Greater Manchester in the maintenance of these hybrid vehicles,” says Optare Commercial Director, Glenn Saint. “Our success in winning this important contract is a measure of the level we have reached in our understanding and experience of hybrid technology and of fully integrated electrical systems.

“One of the key features of all products in the Optare range is their low-weight construction and innovative modular design. This means that the Solo, Versa and Tempo models ordered by GMITA will all feature the same hybrid platform and architecture, enabling cost savings to be made both in production and ongoing maintenance.”

GMITA is responsible for overseeing the provision of public transport in Greater Manchester with Greater Manchester Passenger Transport Executive (GMPTE) implementing GMITA’s policies. GMPTE’s Interim Bus and Rail Director, Michael Renshaw, said: “This is an important step in the delivery of the hybrid bus programme and I look forward to working with Optare on this part of the contract as well as the delivery of the new fleet.”

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