Freightliner, two Mayflower subsidiaries launch commercial transit bus venture

PORTLAND, Ore. (March 2) — Freightliner Corp., North America’s largest producer of heavy-duty trucks, has formed a joint venture with Mayflower Corp. to build and distribute commercial transit buses in the U.S. and Canada.

The agreement, effective March 31, will join Freightliner subsidiary Thomas Built Buses with Mayflower subsidiaries Walter Alexander, one of Europe’s largest bus body manufacturers, and Dennis Bus and Coach, the leading commercial bus chassis maker in the U.K.

The companies plan to build low-floor, lighter weight transit buses used in a variety of city transport applications. The buses will be manufactured by the joint venture for Thomas
Built Buses by the year 2000 and also be distributed by that company’s distribution network.

“This joint venture continues Freightliner’s strategy to establish a major position in the North American commercial bus market,” said Freightliner president and CEO Jim Hebe.”We will immediately be a dominant player in
the low-floor shuttle bus segment of the transit bus market.’

The annual volume of the North American commercial
bus market is estimated at about 20,000 units annually, Freightliner said.

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