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Harris Group poised to build
bespoke 9.5T chassis cowl

By The Whisperer

With many years in the coach and bus industry, The Whisperer keeps his ear to the ground for all the latest tit-bits and gossip. Tell him what’s going on in your part of the world: e-mail him via

Harris Group is in the final stages of completing designs for its own chassis cowl, aimed at filling the gap in the market left after Mercedes-Benz decided not to take its long-lived Vario to Euro 6.

The Dublin-based dealership is drawing on its long experience of assembling Hino trucks from imported kits, along with its knowledge of the commercial vehicle sector to build the all-new chassis cowl.

It is expected to progress to manufacturing in 2018, with the prototype completed within the next six months.

“We are very advanced on the project,” says Group Marketing Manager, Chris Haughton.

Designed as a 9.5T unit, it will be downrated to 7.5T for passenger use.

The trusted Euro 6 four-cylinder Darlington-built Cummins ISB4.5 and ZF EcoLife gearbox will power it.

The yet-to-be-named chassis-cowl will have options for passenger use, as well as for other commercial vehicles. It will be available to any bodybuilder and Mr Haughton is confident that it will be popular in the “20-plus seater” market.

As well as importing China-built Higer coaches and LDV minibuses/vans, Harris Group is Ireland’s Hino and Isuzu distributor and is assembling ‘knock-down kits’ of Sinotruk at its on-site plant.