The proudly South African commercial vehicle manufacturer had its luxury MCV 600 and semi-luxury MCV S140N on display at the 2018 Southern African Bus Operators Association (Saboa) Conference to showcase its new range.
The Saboa Conference gave MCV the opportunity to see what its competitors are up to and meet with clients. This was especially important, as the manufacturer launched two new buses, which its clients had not yet seen.
Awny Sadek, GM of MCV, said: “MCV is a Saboa member and the conference offers a great opportunity to meet all our clients and competitors under one roof. We launched two new vehicles, of which our clients were aware, but had not seen. Customers at Saboa were able to view the products and give feedback. The response was very good.”
The company manufactures its vehicles locally with up to 98 percent of the bus body built in South Africa. Parts are readily available, and MCV has also kept cost of maintenance in mind. The semi-luxury MCV S140N is designed specifically for cross-border transport and the harsh conditions of rural roads in South Africa, Zimbabwe, Zambia and Malawi.
Mark Bielovich, sales executive at MCV, explained: “The S140N has been specifically designed to keep maintenance low. The front has a three-piece bumper for easy repair and is fitted with LED lights instead of glass, which also makes it easier to replace if damaged.”
These lights make the bus a little more unique while keeping safety in mind. The same can be said of the other design features like the luggage doors, which are fitted with a manual pantographic, or sliding hinge, system – as opposed to the traditional flip-up doors.
“The traditional door system is a hazard, as someone can walk into it or hit their head. The sliding door is safer and also uses up less space, which is very useful in cramped bus stations,” Bielovich said.
The MCV 600 is the flagship vehicle for the company and is ideal for tours as it has a second seat at the front of the vehicle for the tour guide and a microphone installed. It comes standard with USB charger ports for every seat, WiFi and an air-conditioning system.
The rear wheels turn with the front wheels, which reduces the vehicle’s turning radius and allows the bus to turn comfortably in tight spaces such as hotel entrances. Both vehicles have Volvo chassis and engines.
This partnership between MCV and Volvo Bus Southern Africa has given Volvo the opportunity to expand its product range into the semi-luxury vehicle market segment. It traditionally featured predominantly in the luxury bus segment. You can find out more about this partnership on page 52.
When asked if MCV plans to return to Saboa next year, Sadek said: “Of course MCV will be back next year, and with a bigger stand.”