The Chief Minister of Kerala, Oommen Chandy flagged off ten Tata Marcopolo buses on April 12, 2015 for operation by the Kerala State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) under the newly formed Kerala Urban Road Transport Corporation (KURTC).
Flagged off from Ernakulam, Thevara Bus Station, these buses are part of the 97 vehicles ordered by KSRTC with Tata Motors, under the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNUrM) phase II.
According to a company statement, Tata Motors will supply TATA STARBUS URBAN 9/12 BS III, from TATA MARCOPOLO, offering upto 40 seats with a capacity to accommodate standing passengers. Designed for easy entry and exit, the bus is built with a floor height of 900 mm and 12 meters in length, with a wide passage way for easy movement and entry and exit, due to its well-spaced seating in the 2X2 configuration. The bus is also equipped with double overhead grab rods and is airy due to its newly designed long sliding glass windows. A smartly designed new age signature front face will allow easy identification of the new TATA MARCOPOLO bus from a distance.
Equipped with a proven Tata Cummins ISBe 5.9 BS III Engine and 6-SPEED Gear Box, the new buses will provide for maximum performance and efficiency, also confirming to the Urban Bus Specifications – II, for faster acceleration of 0.8 minutes per second. These buses roll-over tested, equipped with air-suspension at the rear and are also built such that lesser noise, vibration and harshness enters the cabin, for comfortable travel.
For additional safety, the TATA MARCOPOLO buses are also well lit-up, has an emergency exit at the rear and is fit with a fire extinguisher. The buses are also fitted with On-Bus Intelligent Transport System (ITS) like video cameras for surveillance, along with twin on-board LED destination boards, has a GPS system, a public announcement system, along with on board diagnostics.
The drivers’ space is also ergonomically laid out for comfortable operations, with a 4-way adjustable seat, and a wide angle wind shield for maximum driver visibility.
Tata Motors has also received an order for over 3500 buses nationally, under JnNURM II. Of these Tata Motors has an order of over 900 buses in the Southern region, from Karnataka, Pondicherry, Kerala and North-East Karnataka.
TATA MARCOPOLO is a bus and coach manufacturing company headquartered in Dharwad, Karnataka, established through a 51:49 joint venture between Tata Motors and Brazil-based Marcopolo S.A. a global leader in body-building for buses and coaches. The JV established in 2006 has delivered more than 70000 buses till date in India and Overseas market.
TATA MARCOPOLO has two manufacturing plants, one in Dharwad with an installed capacity of 15,000 buses per annum and another one at Lucknow with capacity of 3,000 buses a year. Through this JV, TMML has acquired skills of Product Innovations, Process Innovation introducing world class buses, with the most relevant global technologies, and most importantly are constantly learning to manage these technologies incorporating flexibility to introduce buses for today and the future, with speed and in-line with varied market requirements.
Tata Motors Limited is India’s largest automobile company, with consolidated revenues of INR 2,32,834 crores (USD 38.9 billion) in 2013-14. Through subsidiaries and associate companies, Tata Motors has operations in the UK, South Korea, Thailand, South Africa and Indonesia. Among them is Jaguar Land Rover, the business comprising the two iconic British brands. It also has an industrial joint venture with Fiat in India. With over 8 million Tata vehicles plying in India, Tata Motors is the country’s market leader in commercial vehicles and among the top in passenger vehicles. It is also the world’s fifth largest truck manufacturer and fourth largest bus manufacturer. Tata cars, buses and trucks are being marketed in several countries in Europe, Africa, the Middle East, South Asia, South East Asia, South America, CIS and Russia.