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Old 18th April 2010, 15:54   #406
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Most of the thing you have mentioned are done by the builder who makes the body not by merc.
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Old 18th April 2010, 19:31   #407
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Originally Posted by Rahulkool View Post
Most of the thing you have mentioned are done by the builder who makes the body not by merc.
But, Merc sells the bus as a ready to use product. You can say this as an excuse for an Ashok Leyland or a TATA product, because 99% of their products are purchased as chassis, and bodies are put on by a third party body builder.

In case of Merc, the Body is built by Sutlej under direct supervision of Merc, and it is Merc who sells the bus. Even when the Volvo Buses were built by Azad, their bodies had a particular standard. This is not the case with the Sutlej built crap sold with the star.

I am not sure if I am reading too much into it, it appears that Sharma has withdrawn the Merc from the Bangalore-Mumbai schedule. AND, interestingly, they now operate three schedules with B9Rs! This goes on to show what is passenger preference.
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Old 18th April 2010, 20:43   #408
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Originally Posted by Rahulkool View Post
Most of the thing you have mentioned are done by the builder who makes the body not by merc.
That is no excuse. When a buyer buys a Merc, he buys it coz it's Merc, and not based on where independent parts are sourced from. And it's Merc's responsibility to ensure top-class quality for it's products.
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Old 19th April 2010, 12:02   #409
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Originally Posted by binaiks View Post
I am not sure if I am reading too much into it, it appears that Sharma has withdrawn the Merc from the Bangalore-Mumbai schedule.
I dont think that the Mercedes bus has been withdrawn. I can still see the bus mentioned in their online booking page for Mumbai.
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Old 19th April 2010, 15:03   #410
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Interesting thought. Hope this materializes.

But I see light years of gap between the hospitality offered by, say, Kingfisher Airlines and any of these bus operators.
Just imagine KF type bus/road hostesses replacing the existing cheddi-clad cleaners. This reminds of the new Castrol ad with two female assistants in a red Volvo truck.
On the other side, at least some of the major operators are having some couteous staff on board.

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If you read the news paper, The private operator that got license to run buses in Delhi Cluster 1, "Star Bus Pvt Ltd", main investor and CEO is Ajay Singh, also the CEO of SpiceJet. He may assemble "Chinese" buses (I am not a fan of Chinese goods) in the old Daewoo plant in Delhi for their operations. Yes there are similarities.
What's the Delhi Cluster 1, btw?
How can Ajay Singh be an investor and CEO of two companies at the same time?
Certainly there are similarities across travel and logistics industries. If you see DHL, FedEx share their fleet for better economy.
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Old 26th April 2010, 12:51   #411
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happen to see an ISUZU Vijayand bus on BBY-BLR route....it looked a bit tacky as it was standing with VRL multi axke yellow color ...both yellows were same but looked completely out of sorts when standing nxt to each other
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Old 26th April 2010, 19:32   #412
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Default Whatever happened to N.S. Tourist?

Does anyone know about a N.S. Tourist based at Salem? Are they still afloat or have they shut shop? In the late '80s and early '90s they used to be the topnotch long-distance operators on the BLR-Salem and BLR-Ernakulam/Kottayam routes. They even had Isuzu-engined buses then with six-speed gearboxes (manual) on the BLR-Ernakulam route, which were more than a match for operators viz. Yesbee Travels and Indira Travels with re-re-conditioned Ashok Leylands.
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Old 27th April 2010, 08:59   #413
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On 16-APR-2010, I rode to Bombay in an MSRTC Shivneri Mercedes-Benz bus. It didn't live up to my expectations. The ride was too harsh. And by that I mean that every time the bus swayed, it tossed me around. Also, the ride was uncomfortably rough. It was like an auto rickshaw! The air suspension barely as good as a BEST bus. The dampers were a joke...Oh the oscillations!

The second big problem I had was with the size of the bus. The aisle was so narrow, I with my pockets bulging with my cell phone and wallet, kept hitting seats on both sides of the aisle, not to mention the bags I carried in my hands. One might think at this point that Mercedes-Benz have sacrificed aisle size to accommodate wider seats while maintaining the overall width of the vehicle. They haven't. What appears to have happened is that they've made the bus narrower which, in my opinion, has made it more unstable and increased the body roll.

Then there's a third problem and this might not seem like a big deal, but I assure you, it's very annoying. The seat reclining lever touches the seat cushion and sticks out so that when you sit down, it pokes your hamstrings.

But don't go away just yet. The Merc doesn't disappoint... if you want to be disappointed, that is. The air conditioning vents aren't very user friendly. They just open and shut. You can't 'direct' the flow of air. Well, not effectively anyway.

And finally, the cherry on the sundae is this: The last two rows at the back of the bus get really incredibly HOT! The engine is right behind/under you and the good folk at Merc seem not to give too much importance to heat insulation between the passenger cabin and the engine bay.

The only silver lining is that most of MSRTC's fleet consists of the Volvo B7R's and 9400's and JCBL/King Long Cerita buses. They are far better than the Merc buses in absolutely every way. And I'm not exaggerating about this. The air conditioning is better, the ride is smoother, the seats are more comfortable, the recliner lever is flush with the side of the seat so that you can push it down like a button and it doesn't make unsuspecting passengers cry out in pain!

Hope you never have the misfortune of having to ride in one of those awful Mercedes-Benz buses.

It seems doubtful whether it was a genuine Mercedes. In all probability it must have been a locally-built contraption with "Mercedes-Benz" badged on it. Unfortunately, there are no photos of your trip.
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Old 27th April 2010, 11:35   #414
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Originally Posted by LPT2625 View Post
It seems doubtful whether it was a genuine Mercedes. In all probability it must have been a locally-built contraption with "Mercedes-Benz" badged on it. Unfortunately, there are no photos of your trip.
Unfortunately, isn't the merc bus in India a "locally-built contraption with just the Merc logo on it"??? MSRTC operates Mercedes buses (the same local one, that you see with Sharma, et al) under their premium "Shivneri" brand.
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Old 27th April 2010, 14:41   #415
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Originally Posted by binaiks View Post
Unfortunately, isn't the merc bus in India a "locally-built contraption with just the Merc logo on it"??? MSRTC operates Mercedes buses (the same local one, that you see with Sharma, et al) under their premium "Shivneri" brand.
I think its build by Sutlej. I can see the Sutlej logo along with Merc Star. I am assuming its a JV with Merc.
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Old 27th April 2010, 16:41   #416
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The Chassis and mechanical/electrical components are imported from MB,brazil as CKD and assembled in india by MB.
The body is a local contraption, as mentioned in the above posts, built by sutlej.

And it looks like if at all hino enters the market in india they will be importing the 11.4m chassis with a 251 bhp and 739 nm torque D08 engine instead of the 12m chassis with a 390 bhp and 1900 nm torque E13 engine,as found in southeast asian markets for express services.
This would be imported from thailand as CKD and assembled in india by hino.
JCBL has been selected to build the body.

This could be competing with Swaraj Isuzu which also has similar specs.
IMO,Isuzu have a superior 7+1 speed gearing for highway runs compared to a 6+1 of hino.That would make FE marginally better for isuzu.

Last edited by conjon : 27th April 2010 at 16:42.
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Old 27th April 2010, 17:13   #417
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Originally Posted by binaiks View Post
Unfortunately, isn't the merc bus in India a "locally-built contraption with just the Merc logo on it"??? MSRTC operates Mercedes buses (the same local one, that you see with Sharma, et al) under their premium "Shivneri" brand.
I had travelled through Sharma Mercedes Bus from Bangalore to Mumbai during October. The bus doesnt make you feel its a local built. Its on par with Volvo and Isuzu.

I had a enjoyable journey and the best thing is the suspension and engine smoothness is excellent which I felt is better than the Volvo.

Pics of Mercedes, Volvo, Isuzu in my photo album:

Picasa Web Albums - Kadri007 - India Bus#

MSRTC has never maintained thier buses in good conditions hence blaming MB may not be fair.
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Old 27th April 2010, 21:30   #418
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Originally Posted by binaiks View Post
Unfortunately, isn't the merc bus in India a "locally-built contraption with just the Merc logo on it"??? MSRTC operates Mercedes buses (the same local one, that you see with Sharma, et al) under their premium "Shivneri" brand.
What I meant by "locally-built contraption" is that the bus body is of low quality as it might have been built by a local bus builder with just the Mercedes-Benz/BMW/Ferrari...you name it...sticker on it. I am only hazarding a guess here because Sutlej and Mercedes-Benz, IMHO, cannot and will not come up with a shoddy job. I am stating this purely from observation and nothing else. Also, let me add, I am not a spokesperson for either Sutlej Motors or Mercedes-Benz and I am also not associated with both of these companies either directly or indirectly. Hopefully, someone might be able to upload photos of the bus in question in the future and clear the air of confusion.
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Old 29th April 2010, 10:21   #419
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YET ANOTHER VOLVO ACCIDENT
The Kallada group multi-axle volvo operating in Bangalore - Alleppy route(red colour B9R) rammed in to a tipper lorry yesterday night near Krishnagiri.Casulaties are not known. The bus had a heavy damage on left side as told to me by a driver of another bus.
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Old 29th April 2010, 11:37   #420
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Originally Posted by gold class View Post
YET ANOTHER VOLVO ACCIDENT
The Kallada group multi-axle volvo operating in Bangalore - Alleppy route(red colour B9R) rammed in to a tipper lorry yesterday night near Krishnagiri.Casulaties are not known. The bus had a heavy damage on left side as told to me by a driver of another bus.
Shucks! Must be another case of a lorry without working taillamps parked along the road.

I hope there are no casualities.
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