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Old 12th April 2010, 18:29   #91
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Ashley, Please see the attached image. It shows (L-R) 3rd gen, 4th gen and 2nd (and 1st. AFAIK the rear of 1st and 2nd gen are almost similar) gen Volvos. 4th gen volvos are also available without the rear glass. Image posted with permission of the owner.
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How Volvo changed the way we look at buses and bus travel-120420106741.jpg  

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Old 12th April 2010, 20:28   #92
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Are you sure? I have done this route by volvo many times and not once did the bus not stop for refueling. Maybe you are in deep slumber when the bus stops (usually around 2-3 am). I have the habit of getting down and stretching during these fuel stops.
I am very sure of that - Are you talking about the Government bus or the Private ones?

The first time I did a journey on the Ke SRTC from BGLR to Alappuzha, bus stopped at Palakkad for refueling. On the next run, it did not. On speaking to the conductor, he said they do not stop of refueling. (I got down at Trichur - not sure if he did refuel at Ernakulam).

The Karnataka SRTC does BGLR-TVM-BGLR without any refueling in between - this is per the conductor.
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Old 14th April 2010, 15:16   #93
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Originally Posted by binaiks View Post
I am very sure of that - Are you talking about the Government bus or the Private ones?

The first time I did a journey on the Ke SRTC from BGLR to Alappuzha, bus stopped at Palakkad for refueling. On the next run, it did not. On speaking to the conductor, he said they do not stop of refueling. (I got down at Trichur - not sure if he did refuel at Ernakulam).

The Karnataka SRTC does BGLR-TVM-BGLR without any refueling in between - this is per the conductor.

I am talking about private one and they always stop, which I am sure. But how does that matter?
I have only once used KaSRTC.
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Old 14th April 2010, 22:17   #94
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I am talking about private one and they always stop, which I am sure. But how does that matter?
It does matter.. Private Volvos never refuel in Bangalore, since diesel is expensive here. They always refuel on their way, esp from Tamil Nadu where it is cheaper!

At the same time, the Government Volvos necessarily refuel in their own state before they begin their journey.

The Airavat refuels before it starts its journey from Bangalore, while the KeSRTC Garuda would refuel before it starts out from Trivandrum. Interestingly, the Airavat that goes to Mumbai usually refuels at Nipani.
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Old 15th April 2010, 11:20   #95
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Do private volvos and state owned volvos have any kind of speed limits? I thought Airavat has 80kmph while vrl/sharma/paulo/raj national had none.

I have travelled across various volvos on mumbai-bangalore route, also on mumbai-udaipur with rishab volvo.

The safest driver i felt was Airavat and next would be Rishab.
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Old 29th May 2010, 13:48   #96
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Default what are the economics of volvo/merc buses ?

dear members , this is the one question that i couldnt find the answer so far ,
these buses costs around 65 Lks approx , now if you consider the travelling business i think 60% are the fuel charges plus the maintainance cost plus the driver fees etc etc then even if these operators do operate the bus between two destinations twice daily as our avg speeds hardly exeeds 45kmph given road conditions it takes you 5 hrs for an 250 km journey then how come these buses become economical to operate? i think it will take at least 4 years to cover their investment only and then the real profit ,but by then the buses becomes so worn out and seems to be out of steam given our harsh operating conditions here, how these guys manageto buy and run so expensive buses then?
please let me know if you know the answers , i tried to ask to many people but they didnt seems to be knowing that .
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Old 29th May 2010, 14:01   #97
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Volvo vs Mercedes Benz buses - Page 6 - India Travel Forum, BCMTouring
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Old 29th May 2010, 14:17   #98
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Originally Posted by quattroa4 View Post
dear members , this is the one question that i couldnt find the answer so far ,
these buses costs around 65 Lks approx , now if you consider the travelling business i think 60% are the fuel charges plus the maintainance cost plus the driver fees etc etc then even if these operators do operate the bus between two destinations twice daily as our avg speeds hardly exeeds 45kmph given road conditions it takes you 5 hrs for an 250 km journey then how come these buses become economical to operate? i think it will take at least 4 years to cover their investment only and then the real profit ,but by then the buses becomes so worn out and seems to be out of steam given our harsh operating conditions here, how these guys manageto buy and run so expensive buses then?
please let me know if you know the answers , i tried to ask to many people but they didnt seems to be knowing that .
Very interesting thread, as far as i know the cost of these buses ranges from Rs 80 to 90 Lakhs. Most of the owners i have spoken to in Northern part of India feel that they have burnt there hands. The EMI of these buses is as high as Rs 70,000/month.

Operators in Western and Southern region are making profits because they have advantage of better roads and infracstruture when compared to North India.
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Old 29th May 2010, 14:23   #99
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Indeed very informative and worth looking into. Thank you
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Old 30th May 2010, 13:20   #100
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yeah ! after reading the sheets , its very clear that they can recover costs within 3 years as they have to pay EMI also from that amount. so i think it must be taking them at least 5 years to clear all the EMI s after which they can earn real profit , but whats the state of buses after those years ? what about maintainance costs ? still seems to be uneconomical to run then?
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Old 30th May 2010, 14:05   #101
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oh! and i forgot , the sheet doesnt take in to consideration the drivers salary. its missing in the calculations ..
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Old 30th May 2010, 16:23   #102
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There's almost a similar thread running on this & these points have been covered there - http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/commer...us-travel.html

Check out the Page 2 on the above thread that talks more from the economical point of view.
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Old 31st May 2010, 13:41   #103
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ok , then here is another question , whats the point if volvo gives you a avg of 1.5 kmpl ? it should be at least 3 kmpl , a double of thet what it gives . cant they reduce say 50-60 odd bhp so that avg can be better ?
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Old 31st May 2010, 23:04   #104
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Originally Posted by quattroa4 View Post
so i think it must be taking them at least 5 years to clear all the EMI s after which they can earn real profit
Another reason is you are in intercity travel business, Operating "Volvos" adds to the goodwill of the company. Because of this added goodwill, they should be able to charge a bit more for the normal services they operate. Recently i was talking to a person in charge of running Volvo for a big compnay, he way saying, our groups "other business" is making huge profit, so the group does not mind writting of the losses of the division, but it gives the group more visibility according to the upper management. This group is in the travel industry...
Are there any operator who is running only with Volvos and around for a while, except the ones use Volvo as a cover for smuggling spirit.

Last edited by teamveevee : 31st May 2010 at 23:13.
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Old 30th August 2011, 18:11   #105
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Default Re: How Volvo changed the way we look at buses and bus travel

Firstly this is an excellent thread talking about Volvo and luxury bus travel in India. Volvo busses have become a generic word in our country similar to other great brands in totally varied businesses/ products such as
Xerox - for photocopier
JCB - for earthmovers
Bisleri - for mineral water
and so many more. The point is that Volvo was for sure the first and the only manufacturer who brought in a fully Air conditioned rear engined bus for inter city travel in India (the bold letters are absolutely in context)

Why does a Volvo ring in the luxury feel compared to others-

1. Fully sealed coach with no window openings- reduces pollution and rattle which is found in most other normal busses or creeps in over a period of time due to bad road conditions
2. Silent and very powerful rear engine - reduced the NVH inside the coach since most other busses are front engined and the engine bay sits inside the passenger section of the coach (near driver)
3. Air conditioned coach reducing the dust/pollution and most importantly very noisy road condition in our country with all the honking and blaring
4. Reduced journey time compared to the normal busses thus reducing travel fatigue and increasing turnaround time
5. Good build quality of Volvo with both the powertrain and the coach standards maintaining high quality thus reducing breakdowns and repairs to a great extent

However these virtues are not a permanent patent of Volvo and even if other manufactures match all of these issues fully they could still be worthy competitors and some of them are emerging in the names of MB and Isuzu powered busses. However Volvos are still the primary and most popular option among both STUs and private carriers.

Talking about adding profits and goodwill to the operators read some posts that shows how Volvos were leading game changers for KaSRTC-

A smooth ride to success
Cruise control - Business Today - Business News
The Hindu : States / Karnataka : KSRTC to add 3,000 new buses this year
There are also instances where many private operators (Diwakars or Kesineni- I am not very sure of the name here, please correct) in states like AP who replaced or opted for an all Volvo fleet shows how it changed the game.

Hopefully we will have good bus units coming out from other manufacturers that will match some of these. Check out few of these which have already been lapped up in the market -

SRS Travels - A/c Hispano busses - srsbooking.com/gallery
Seabird - Isuzu - seabirdtourists.com/gallery?page=2
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