MAN Truck & Bus Middle East and Africa Launches Fifth Generation NEOPLAN Skyliner Bus

Launched at UITP MENA Congress and Showcase 2012, new model meets regional demand for VIP transport with best features in its class

Leading commercial vehicle producer MAN Truck & Bus Middle East and Africa launched the fifth generation of its premium NEOPLAN Skyliner bus at the UITP MENA Congress and Showcase 2012 hosted by the Abu Dhabi Department of Transport (DoT), held at Jumeirah at Etihad Towers, Abu Dhabi between March 26th and 28th.

“The GCC is witnessing an increase in demand for luxury transport solutions within the tourism and burgeoning MICE sector and this is creating opportunities for bus manufacturers targeting this region,” said Markus Geyer, CEO Sales Region Middle East & Africa.

“UITP MENA Congress and Showcase 2012 is the ideal platform for MAN Truck and Bus to engage with partners and potential customers, in order to exchange ideas and experiences on public transport solutions”.

“The demand for VIP buses from government entities, aviation companies, city routes, football clubs and hotels supports the strong demand for public transport solutions in the GCC as it does in other rapidly developing markets,” Geyer added.

The luxurious new double-decker NEOPLAN Skyliner includes a comfortable lounge area, a bathroom, and a fully-equipped kitchen with a fridge in the lower-deck. The bus also features two DVD players with screens, a luggage compartment and a dual-zone air conditioning system. The bus can be customized to accommodate between 68 and 83 people depending on seat configurations. The reclining passenger seats exude comfort with high backs, service tables, and foot rests.

The new bus incorporates sophisticated safety measures including a reinforced steel frame structure with integrated solid roll bars, a fire extinguishing system for the engine compartment, smoke detectors in the luggage compartment and two surveillance cameras for each door. The environmentally-friendly bus runs on a MAN Pure Diesel engine and a MAN TipMatic 12-speed manual transmission which considerably reduces fuel consumption and harmful gas emissions.

Thomas Weinmann, Bus Senior Area Sales Manager added: “The GCC countries are promising markets for us as they have weathered the financial crisis very successfully and have emerged in a strong position. Their governments have the financial ability and the will to invest in the best available technology.”

He added: “There is a significant impetus in this region to embark on future development plans in a sustainable manner which translates into strong demand for vehicles that are environmentally friendly and fuel efficient. In the long term these advancements also lower total ownership costs. Our buses – both within the public transport sector and the VIP sector are globally among the best in their class and we are experiencing a great deal of interest from this market.”

Currently the Abu Dhabi Department of Transport (DoT) is testing MAN’s Lion’s City bus which runs on compressed natural gas and MAN’s expectations are extremely positive regarding the results of the trial.

MAN Truck and Bus produces several bus models under two brands MAN, which is designed to serve as a public transportation vehicle on both intercity and inner-city routes, and NEOPLAN, which offers a range of high-end luxury buses for VIP use that can be customised according to individual client needs. Both brands incorporate the most advanced safety features. The buses are specially developed for high intensity use in hot climates, and are equipped with features such as tropical AC units, pre-separator air intake systems and cooling air curtains on doors. MAN engines are designed to operate in a highly fuel efficient manner while curbing the release of harmful gas emissions.