19 Jan 2023
MAN has landed the top international bus awards with its city buses and coaches for the third time in succession. However, they are not just impressing industry juries, customers are also extremely pleased with their MAN products.
MAN has won Europe’s top bus prizes for the third time in succession – that’s a first for any marque! In 2020, the international Coach of the Year title went to the MAN Lion’s coach, and the NEOPLAN Cityliner bagged the same prize in 2022. The triple was completed when the MAN Lion’s City E recently won the Bus of the Year 2023 award. No awards were given in 2021 due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Triple success for a strong MAN bus team. Winners on video!
The MAN Lion’s City 12 E was the first ever fully electric city bus to win the Bus of the Year award. Including this award, MAN Truck & Bus has already brought home twelve cups for its bus marques – winning the Coach of the Year title six times (2022, 2020, 2006, 2004, 2000, 1994) as well as Bus of the Year six times (2023, 2015, 2005, 1999, 1995, 1990). The company has established itself as a serial winner.
What’s more, the buses don’t just appeal to the industry journalists who make up the juries – MAN’s customers are extremely happy too. That is backed up by excellent feedback from bus operators, with whom the international sales and service team is in regular contact. In recent years, MAN has made significant investments in its bus portfolio and launched some outstanding products – despite Covid and the crisis in Ukraine. The road to future market success is clear.
The MAN Lion’s coach is a travel titan: there is room for up to 61 passengers in its spacious and comfortable interior. The powerful MAN D26 engine produces up to 510 hp, getting the bus calmly and quickly to its destination. A range of latest-generation assistance systems improve safety. Alongside individual features such as the incredibly efficient drivetrain, using just 19.4 litres per 100 kilometres, the OptiView mirror replacement system and the intelligent integration of the wheelchair lift above the front axle, the jury members also highlighted the overall package of comfort, innovation and handling.
The NEOPLAN Cityliner seamlessly continues the 50-year success story of the Cityliner from its creation in 1971. The jurors were especially impressed by the overall concept, blending economy, safety, comfort and design. Its high-performance drivetrain with its modern Euro-6 six-cylinder engine is the perfect match for the 6-speed automatic transmission, making it especially suitable for demanding routes with steep climbs and tight bends. The ultramodern interior ensures that passengers have a truly relaxing journey.
There has been much said and written about the MAN Lion’s City E in recent times – May last year saw it travel all the way from Munich to the international Bus Euro Test in Limerick, Ireland under its own power. The journey covered some 2,500 kilometres through eight countries, travelling through the Alps, along motorways, through narrow streets and even a ferry across the Atlantic.
The jury had particular praise for its “groundbreaking design, high levels of comfort and a very quiet interior”. The driver’s cab is also one of the best on the market, offering superb levels of safety. In total, the fully electric bus used 1,764 kilowatt/hours of energy on its road trip through Europe, achieving an impressive regeneration rate of around 21 per cent. Its extensive daily range also meant that it did not need to stop to charge at any point during each stage.
Since sales began in 2020, MAN customers in Europe have already ordered well over 1,000 fully electric MAN Lion’s City E buses. It is already on the road in European cities such as Barcelona, Hamburg, Copenhagen, Malmö and Zurich, and is set to bring zero-emission travel to the streets of many more cities soon.
But even the best products can only be successful if the customers are satisfied. That is why the MAN team is in close contact with the users and advises them intensively. In addition to product-specific questions, this also includes questions about the mobility turnaround and the logistics required when switching to e-mobility. MAN also intensively involves its customers in the development of new products and features.
Although the last few years and months have seen a few blows due to the Covid crisis and the war in Ukraine and sales were down, especially for coaches, we can still look to the future with confidence. MAN, with its innovative products and a highly motivated team, is well positioned for positive growth in the bus sector.
Text: Boris Pieritz