Continued recovery in the demand for new coaches has seen Alexander Dennis and Volvo commit to an initial 60-strong stock batch of Plaxton Leopard and Plaxton Panther models. They will be available for delivery from Q1 2023 and all will be mounted on B8R chassis.
Further stock builds may follow later in 2023, the businesses involved say. Interest in versatile coaches that suit a variety of operations is particularly high, according to Alexander Dennis, and all those that form part of the initial build programme will be completed to PSVAR compliant specification.
A choice of I-Shift automated manual or ZF EcoLife automatic gearboxes will be offered in the Volvo B8R chassis, while all 2023 Plaxton stock will have upgraded interiors with next-generation Brusa seats as standard.
Stock Panthers will be available with either 53 or 57 seats and a centre sunken toilet, or 61 seats with no toilet. Leopards that form part of the initial build will come with either 59 seats in a 2+2 layout or 72 to 3+2 configuration.
Alexander Dennis General Manager New and Used Coach Sales Simon Wood adds that demand is also strong for used vehicles, and particularly for the Leopard. What he describes as “attractive trade-ins” on late-model coaches are thus available.
Adds Mr Wood: “We are delighted to confirm our initial stock programme for next year, with no fewer than 60 Plaxton Panther and Plaxton Leopard coaches that will give operators a wide range of options to best suit their requirements. These will be fantastic additions to any fleet that will be prepared for long working lives while also offering great residual values if operating requirements change.”
Volvo Bus UK Sales Director Phil Owen has underlined Mr Wood’s comments, noting that the B8R “is a tried and tested platform” that is safe and fuel efficient. “Bodied by Plaxton, it provides the industry with a vehicle that offers a great level of versatility and value for money.”