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Mercedes-Benz Citaro – comfort in public local transport: Mercedes-Benz urban buses in fresh design: Cool looks make bus transport more attractive
- Bus operator Omnibusverkehr Spillmann takes delivery of six remarkable Citaros and two Sprinter City 77 buses
- Six different design variants
- Unique vehicle designs aimed at further boosting appeal
- High-quality appointments prevent vandalism
Omnibusverkehr Spillmann GmbH has named one of its six new Citaros "Nautilus". As such, it fits in perfectly with the existing concept embodied by its Bietigheim-based urban buses "City Lounge" and "Metro Lounge". The naming of the company's regular-service buses alludes to their special appointments, which exude high quality and provide for a relaxing, feel-good atmosphere while also helping to prevent vandalism. On 27 January, Bülent Menekse, managing director of Spillmann GmbH, took receipt of six remarkable Citaros and two Sprinter City 77 buses from Rüdiger Kappel, head of sales for the Mercedes-Benz Bus and Coach unit, at the Mannheim bus factory.
Comfort features provide for attractive buses
Spillmann's corporate philosophy centres above all on the attractiveness of its vehicles and their standard of appointments. Business-like vehicles geared solely to functionality are conspicuously absent from the Spillmann fleet. It is the state-of-the-art technology, high-quality appointments, infotainment, WLAN and the active management of customers' wishes and complaints that make the Spillmann fleet so popular with customers. According to Bülent Menekse: "The rising passenger figures bear out our strategy of investing uncompromisingly in comfort features. "The high level of customer satisfaction is attributable to our individual light concept, our appointments and also our exterior design." And interestingly, the sense of wellbeing appears to extend to all age groups, as according to the company, vandalism is practically non-existent in particular on board the high-quality regular-service buses - providing the best indication of satisfied passengers.
Cool design concepts
They sport names such as "I-Bus", "Nautilus" or "OBI Bus", and each of the Citaro rigid vehicles is unique. One Citaro is reminiscent of a cool Apple store in white and mint green with wooden floor look, while another boasts stainless steel applications and shades of orange. Each vehicle features a specially developed light concept. "Torchlights" on the sidewalls provide for various light moods on board, from a pleasantly warm and relaxing light to a cool and fresh variant. On board the "Nautilus", the blue LED lighting is the definitive touch that rounds off the maritime flair to perfection. Blue is the predominant colour here: the Citaro's sidewalls have been printed all over with marine motifs in a special process. The sprayed-on floor covering has been coloured blue and even the additionally padded ISE seating sports a corresponding pebble motif in the upholstery. The blue head sections round off the overall look. All the vehicles additionally feature information and entertainment systems on board, providing information on the route, advertising and news around the clock.
The Citaro incorporates two standing sections. Standing section number one is intended for wheelchair users and is located on the right directly in front of door 2 in the direction of travel. The design of the entrance as a hinged sliding door enables additional installation space here which Spillmann has taken into consideration in fitting out the bus. The wheelchair user section also incorporates a single folding seat and a leaning aid which doubles as a mother-and-child folding seat. The second standing section is located directly opposite door 2 and is equipped with the same features as well as a centrally located "trident" grab rail which offers support both to the front and the rear. The "Nautilus" and all the other Citaros are fitted with the comfortable and double-upholstered ISE cruiser seating.
About Spillmann GmbH
The company was founded in Bietigheim-Bissingen back in 1928. The first successful scheduled services were operated in the company's early years in the form of workers' bus runs. Over the past few decades, Spillmann has developed into a comprehensive tour company with its own fleet of buses and its own travel agencies. Today, the company is among the leading tour operators in the greater Stuttgart region. Apart from earning Spillmann a nomination for the state of Baden-Württemberg's 2011 "Public Local Transport Innovation Award", the company's premium products and its premium touring fleet have spawned benefits in another area of operations as well, with Spillmann applying its strategic approach equally successfully to its regular-service business, much to the appreciation of its passengers. The buses have nothing whatsoever in common with a "standard issue" public transport vehicle. Remarkable appointments have been shaping the appearance of the company's fleet of regular-service buses for many years now. From chrome-look grab rails through luminous floors to seats upholstered in leather, the comfortable appointments on board the unique vehicles have led to a high level of customer satisfaction. Bus names such as "Metro Lounge", "City Lounge" and "Nautilus" indicate the defining attributes of Spillmann's take on public transport: inviting, relaxing and attractive.
Spillmann's regular-service network takes in the medium-sized town of Bietigheim-Bissingen and the surrounding communities in the north of the administrative district of Ludwigsburg. With a fleet of 50 buses, Spillmann transports an annual passenger volume of some 4 million people. A workforce of 80 keeps the company running.