April’s launch of Bridgestone’s quietest bus and coach tyre ever made followed 18 months of internal testing with its biggest fleet customer. The tyre is in part a product of a lengthy development project with Stagecoach, whose Manchester city centre fleet of green vehicles became the first in Europe to operate on the product. The U-AP 002 reduces rolling resistance, extends mileage, and reduces fuel consumption, CO2 emissions and total cost of ownership according to Bridgestone’s testing against its predecessor in size 275/70 R22.5. The tyre was developed to fulfil the requirements of an electric and hybrid bus fleet, a quickly growing target market.
The eight-year campaign to drive age-compromised tyres from UK roads reached its conclusion today, with amendments to Construction and Use Regulations now prohibiting the use of tyres more than ten years old on the front steered axles of lorries, buses, coaches or on any minibus single wheel axle.
On 26 October 2020, The Road Vehicles (Construction and Use) (Amendment) Regulations 2020 statutory instrument was made. Three days later it was laid before Parliament. It comes into force on 1 February 2021. As a result, 10 year-old and older commercial vehicle tyres will be illegal in the UK from the 1 February 2021. And therefore, the Tyred campaign to ban old and dangerous tyres led by Frances Molloy has achieved a key goal.
Bridgestone has launched its first tyre fully dedicated to the coach segment, the Coach-AP 001. The tyre is designed to offer cost efficiency, comfort, and safety in dry and wet, wintery conditions alike, with high labelling scores for rolling resistance and pass-by noise.
Following strenuous campaigning from the industry, Tyred and Frances Molloy in particular, the government announced on 26 February that it will consult on “options to ban older tyres from use on buses, coaches, heavy goods vehicles and mini-buses to help keep road users safe”. The Department for Transport explained that the proposed legislation will make it illegal for these vehicles to run with a tyre aged 10 years or over.
UK-based Eavesway Travel has specified Apollo Tyres’ Endurace range as fitment on 30 executive coaches in operation on the company’s Eavesway Cruiselink operation. With decades of experience in catering for cruise passengers, Eavesway Travel’s premier coach service offers transport to the main cruise providers from major towns and cities across the UK.
A new Continental drive axle tyre developed specifically for fitment on coaches aims to provide passengers with enhanced safety during the winter months. The tyre maker claims its HDW2 Coach “outperforms M+S tyres and exceeds the performance requirements of the 3PMSF certification.”
GoBus.ie, Ireland’s first non-stop motorway coach service between Galway and Dublin City, has achieved exceptional mileage on a set of Michelin X MultiWay 3D Z tyres fitted to the drive axle, reaching an impressive 542,000km on one of its Volvo 9700 coaches.
Giti Tire has launched the GT Radial WinterPro2, available for the 2017 winter season in the UK from exclusive PCR distributor Micheldever Tyre Services. The manufacturer’s Giti brand commercial range has also received a winter boost with a leading UK coach hire company endorsing its first specific winter marked tyre.
Bridgestone has secured the largest commercial fleet contract in its history, a $110m, five-year deal with transport operator FirstGroup. Bridgestone will supply tyres to more than 60,000 of FirstGroup’s buses and coaches in the USA, Canada and the UK.
Giti Tire’s GSW226, the brand’s first specific winter marked tyre, has won plaudits following a nine-day trip to Switzerland and Austria, fitted by one of the North East’s leading coach hire companies. Stockton-on-Tees-based Compass Royston, which undertakes transport for schools and travel operators, and counts Middlesbrough and Hartlepool United Football Clubs among its many sport clients, decided to trial the tyre based on brand feedback from its sister companies, Esk Valley Coaches and Proctors Coaches.
Bandag has added 3 new sizes to its range of retreads for city bus and coach applications. The Bandag U-AP 001 city bus retread is now available in size 245/70R19.5 and the Bandag BDR-C coach retread, in sizes 245/70R19.5 and 295/80R22.5. As a result of the range extension, the Bandag urban and coach line-up now covers most common premium casing sizes on the market.