Reputable operators of middle and long distance commercial transportation in Nigeria and other key stakeholders were in Lagos, this week, to take part in the launch of the new Marcopolo Paradisio 1350 bus into the Nigerian market.
The presentation of the new generation bus was performed by Weststar Associates Limited, authorised general distributor of Mercedes-Benz in Nigeria, at their facility in Lekki, in collaboration with Auto Alternative Nigeria Limited, the authorised representative of Marcopolo in Nigeria.
According to Weststar’s officials, the new generation Paradiso 1350 is even better than its predecessors, as it was designed to provide the best passenger experience and greater comfort and safety to the driver. The safety and well-being of passengers and the driver is highly prioritised, as the space between the driver’s cab and the passengers’ section is partitioned with bulletproof glass and the drivers cab is also partitioned with a protective glass door. The Paradiso 1350 bus is built with the ever reliable Mercedes-Benz 0 500 RSD bus chassis developed for middle and long distance travel, and it is a robust and highly durable vehicle that is built to carry 24 tonnes and a body length of up to 14 meters. The Marcopolo Paradiso1350 bus with the Mercedes-Benz O 500 RSD chassis is now available for purchase courtesy Weststar Associates Limited.
They said the new Marcopolo Paradiso 1350 brings external and internal changes that raise the level of sophistication, comfort, safety and efficiency, compared to its predecessors. A renewed exterior sees the Paradiso 1350 appear with newly designed mirrors that offer better driver visibility, newly designed bumpers and side windows and a new visual identity in the front; while the rear comes with a larger back cover that improves access to mechanical components and rear windows with a new design. Another major feature of the exterior is the headlights with new internal design and integrated DRL (Daytime Running Lights), also included in the headlights are LED fog lights and an elongated side wall design giving a modern feel and flow to the light assembly.
The interior of the new Marcopolo Paradiso 1350 is totally transformed from the driver’s cabin with new lighting to the dashboard with soft touch finish and more thermoacoustic comfort. There is also an electric window next to the driver that comes as an optional extra, while the larger access steps come with injected profiles and indirect lighting for ease of entrance, other features include new floor coverings and a new roof design with superior lighting and LED details.
The O 500 RSD 2436 6×2 chassis is equipped with an OM 457 LA engine that comes with 6 in-line cylinders. The power output is 265 kW (355 hp) at 1,750 rpm and is operated via a 6 speed manual gear transmission. The Mercedes-Benz O 500 chassis is also very economical for bus operators as the electronic motors included in its engine ensure that the bus consumes lower fuel and has a longer life.
With regards to safety the O 500 RSD chassis is equipped with safety features like the Top Brake auxiliary engine brake coupled with the conventional engine brake system. This brake system provides many advantages, such as increased braking power, higher speed on slopes, greater safety, less gear shifting, lower maintenance costs, longer life of brake and tire components and fuel economy. Also, there is an anti-lock brake system (ABS) which offers greater safety, because the vehicle remains stable in adverse driving conditions and critical situations. In cases of sudden braking, even on smooth surfaces or rough roads, the ABS system prevents the vehicle from skidding.
Managing Director, Weststar Associates Limited, Mr. Mirko Plath said the introduction of the Marcopolo Paradiso 1350 bus model was a move in the right direction for bus operators in Nigeria, as he believes that the bus operators are ready to take their businesses to the next level. Plath also stated that he appreciates the fact that they continue to put their trust in the Mercedes-Benz brand and that the collaboration with Marcopolo in Nigeria has certainly borne fruit over the years.
The introduction of this bus highlights the growth and expansion of interstate road travel in Nigeria as the industry continues to follow suit with technological advancements from around the world.