Turn about is fair trade for NABI
Sirius design plays off original BRT concept from Hungarian engineers
North American Bus Industries (NABI), Anniston, AL, recently unveiled the Sirius, a new NABI transit bus specially designed for the Hungarian bus market. While NABI is a major supplier of transit buses in the USA, in recent years its Hungarian operations have been limited to partially finished buses exported to the U.S. for final assembly. Hungarian dignitaries and NABI officials staged ceremonies in Kaposvár, Hungary, in September to commemorate the launch.
The NABI Sirius, a 40-foot bus designed for city and suburban routes, is the first member of a family of products designed to meet the needs of public transportation operators throughout Central Europe.
Its modular construction enables the derivation of alternative sizes, and its versatile driveline arrangement enables the application of the latest clean propulsion systems, including compressed natural gas (CNG) and the emerging hybrid electric-drive systems.
Its German MAN chassis uses a six-speed automatic transmission coupled to a clean, quiet MAN diesel engine, which meets current Euro-5 standards and already fulfills the requirements of the rapidly approaching EEV emissions standards. A bright, spacious interior with three wide doors accommodates up to 113 passengers, and assures safe and efficient passenger flow. The chic and distinctive design of the Sirius will not only please passengers, it will also send a bold and distinctive statement from the transit operator.
“The Sirius is an exciting entry into an exciting market for NABI,” says Jim Marcotuli, NABI president and CEO. “NABI has taken advanced, streamlined body styling features from its popular U.S. ‘BRT’ model and has made important adjustments to meet European standards.”
“Market demand is promising,” says Ferenc Baranyai, director of NABI’s Hungarian operations. He sees a viable market opportunity for the new product. “Local public transportation operators now report collective demand for up to about 3,000 units over the next five years,” Baranyai says.
In recent years NABI’s Hungarian operations in Budapest and Kaposvár only manufactured products exported to the U.S. for final assembly in NABI’s Anniston, AL plant. Interestingly during this time, NABI engineers in Hungary played an integral role in the development of the NABI’s BRT model that inspired the Sirius. With its own engineering and manufacturing capabilities already operational in Hungary, Baranyai is understandably enthusiastic about now producing and delivering finished buses domestically.
NABI says its domestic production of the Sirius will also help stimulate Hungary’s economy through the generation of engineering, manufacturing and service work, and that also will create jobs with domestic suppliers of material and equipment used in the Sirius body.
The debut of the Sirius included ceremonial delivery of the first bus to the city of Kaposvár.
“We have been using NABI buses in our fleet for over five years,” says Jozsef Csapo, general director of Kaposvar Public Transportation, Ltd. “We are quite excited to introduce NABI’s beautiful new Sirius into our fleet.” BR