A mobility version of the Yutong TC9 midicoach – the TC9M – has been developed by dealership Pelican Bus and Coach. It is PSVAR compliant and can carry up to eight wheelchair users and their companions.

The mobility variant complements existing accessible and PSVAR compliant members of the Yutong TC9 range, which can each carry up to six wheelchair users. Sanders Coaches of Norfolk took delivery of the first PSVAR compliant TC9 earlier in 2020.

The TC9M receives all of the necessary accessible fittings in China except for the lift. That is added in the UK. Six of an order for 10 TC9s placed recently by Dawsongroup Bus and Coach will be the first to the new mobility specification.

The Yutong TC9M will be supplied fully seated, allowing it to be used as a conventional coach when accessibility is not required. When the maximum eight wheelchair user spaces are needed, the rear five seats and the pair ahead of them on the nearside are retained. Combined with the courier seat, that allows a companion to be carried for each wheelchair user.

“This is a purpose-built, factory-produced midicoach for the mobility sector,” says Pelican Sales Manager Bob Elliott. He adds that the specification could be adapted to suit the GT12, TC12 and battery-electric TCe12 models if customer demand dictates.

“PSVAR compliance is an important part of the Yutong coach offering,” Mr Elliott continues. As built, the TCe12 is prepared for fitment of a lift at its centre doors. The first factory completed PSVAR compliant GT12 will arrive before the end of 2020. Like the accessible TC9, Pelican will arrange the fitment of a lift to the GT12 in the UK.

An article including details of how Pelican has worked with the industry throughout the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic will be published on the routeone website on Wednesday 29 July.