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Choosing the Best Bus Manufacturer for Your Business

Author: Derrick Corea
by Derrick Corea
Posted: Jan 17, 2018

Bus Coach Design

With so many bus manufacturers building buses in the United States, buyers are sometimes overwhelmed with understanding the differences. It’s easy to narrate in our head the level of manufacturing when we consider in terms of vehicles, e.g. Kia versus Mercedes. Buses are no different. For the same reason, someone may look to purchase a Kia or a Mercedes, bus buyers have their own reasons to look into buying one manufacturer over another. Certainly, features to compliment every application, special need, look, feel and budget come into play.

Manufacturers such as Arboc Mobility, Braunability, or Mobility Ventures are great options for wheelchair accessible vehicles. When considering the size of the vehicle in relation to the use (scooting around town or longer trips) a buyer may require advice from a transportation sales coordinator to find the appropriate vehicle. Many times, if not every time, most buses can be customized to allow for wheelchair accessibility and/or ramps or safety features like securement.

Other industries like tours and limo operators may find manufacturers such as KSIR/Elkart Custom Designs, McSweeney Designs or Caleche – the latest convertible bus built on the Mercedes Sprinter, to be a great option. All of these manufacturers produce higher end trims and a level of luxury suited to certain clientele.

More purchasers in the campus, transit, or municipalities may look into buses made by Collins, Goshen or Elkart Coach. These vehicles are all comparable in the price category, however certain bus safety features and materials used may differentiate one from the other. In the end – as with most industries – it may come down to budget.

Saving the best for last – commonly known as the ‘Mercedes Benz’ of the bus industry – is the Turtle Top manufacturer. Although starting at higher price points, these vehicles are unmatched in safety features, both exterior, and interior, and have a multitude of options and sizes to choose from. For many bus buyers with the right budget, this manufacturer builds buses to meet nearly any industry condition. Aside from their noticeable sleek design, the level of detail is sometimes unseen by the passenger or operator until you ride in a different bus and feel and hear the amount of rattling and road noise compared to the Turtle Top.

At the end of the day, the buyer must take all things into consideration when looking to purchase their next bus. Davey Coach has the skill, industry knowledge, and works with 15 different manufacturers to guide you through your next bus purchasing practice.

New vs Used Buses – What’s the Best Investment?

When considering a bus purchase, choosing between buying a new bus or a used bus is one of the first questions to ask. There are many factors to consider, ranging from your demographic to budget and everything in between.

If cost isn’t a factor, buying a new bus would seem to be the best choice. A new bus offers a fresh and untarnished interior and drivetrain. Passengers will be treated to that "new car" feel on a new bus, which can increase customer satisfaction. While the upfront cost is more, unexpected repairs and maintenance costs are significantly less, as the need for such is uncommon with a new bus. This fact alone is an important one, as new buses have less down time for repairs and maintenance and are able to be put to use much more quickly.

Built in amenities like custom lighting or a wet bar are features which are easier to get when you buy a new bus than when buying a used one and sending it out to have those installed later. Custom amenities in a new bus are ready to be put to use and available to passengers right from the start.

New vs Used Bus Sales

A well-maintained used bus can also be a good investment for companies considering a bus purchase. The upfront cost is less, and if taken care of by adhering to the bus’s maintenance schedule and keeping it in tip-top condition, many miles of revenue-generating business can be gained from a used bus. With a used bus, be sure to know the vehicle’s history! Davey Coach works to deliver all past info about any used bus that we are selling so you don’t have to worry about anything.

A few questions to ask when deciding on a new or used bus for sale:

  1. What is the intended use for the bus? Will it be used for luxury trips, airport transfers, or are you adding the bus to your fleet of existing buses? All important questions to consider before deciding.
  2. Can I afford a little down-time? Do I need a bus that is ready to go off the lot, or can I incur lower up-front costs, but maybe have the bus in the shop for a little bit of time to ensure it is properly maintained and ready to transport people safely?
  3. How long do I need this bus to last? Do I intend to add this bus to my fleet and use it for years to come? A new bus would be the right fit in this instance. Or, do you just need a bus for a short period to travel around town? A used bus is perfect for this need!
  4. Do I want some added, built in amenities? Or will I custom build these amenities into a bus at a later time?

While both used and new buses offer profits, the best investment in a bus is one that fits your budget and delivers the facilities you seek to offer to your passengers.

About the Author

Hello, I do write on many topics related to engineering.

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Author: Derrick Corea

Derrick Corea

Member since: Dec 14, 2017
Published articles: 26

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