Volvo Buses has unveiled the new, next-generation 9400 intercity bus range at the Busworld 2016 event in Bengaluru recently. Along with minor exterior face-lifts, a host of engine upgrades to meet the ensuing BS IV emission norms have been carried out. The company entered into the Indian bus market 15 years ago, and has been so dominant and market leading so far. Volvo buses have gained unbeatable reputation among its happy customers for meeting high standards of quality, reliability, luxury, and safety.
The high point here is the new 8.0-litre engine powering the 12.0-metre Volvo 9400 coaches. Assembled by VECV (Volvo Eicher Commercial Vehicles) at its Pithampura facility, the new BS IV-compliant engine hints at the Volvo’s new localisation strategy. The bus body of 9400 range manufactured at Volvo’s Bengaluru plant is already 100 percent localised. Sourcing key aggregates like the powertrain points to the company’s ability to leverage the local manufacturing competence to meet the market standards. The engine generates 333bhp and 1,200Nm of torque, and is mated to a 6-speed manual, fully synchronised gearbox.
The best-selling Volvo 9400 13.8m multi-axle gets a new engine upgrade, from the previous 9.0-litre BS III engine to the BS IV-compliant 11.0-litre engine assembled by Volvo. The 6-cylinder in-line turbo-diesel unit makes 410 bhp of max power at 1600-1900 rpm, with a whopping 1,980 Nm of torque at 950-1400 rpm. It is paired to I-Shift 12-speed AMT transmission. Volvo says that the current powertrain line-up is tuned for enhanced performance as well. The company is also expected to extend the updated engine line-up to its only chassis offering B9R as well. The popular B7R chassis model now remains replaced with the 9400 12.0m coach.
The 9400 14.5m (XL) variant is also BS IV-compliant now, with the aforesaid 11.0-litre diesel engine. With an extended wheelbase of 8.5 metres, this coach features 2+1 seating layout with individual USB charging ports for every passenger. Other highlights of this flag-ship variant includes a three-point seatbelt for each seat, optional chemical toilet, and a pantry with fridge.
The new 9400 range features refreshed front face styling, including the newly designed quadrilateral grille and headlamps, along with the lower bumper section housing fog lamps. The new blue-shade paint job showcased at the show is pleasingly elegant for Volvo’s dimensions, while the built and paint quality is impressive.
Volvo Buses, in the 15 years span, has sold over 4,500 intercity coaches among leading STUs and private operators connecting 100-plus cities across India. The Volvo 9400 was voted best inter-city coach in India within a span of one year after its launch in 2001.
Image Credits: IB Times, Volvo Buses India