Freightliner Custom Chassis Launches New Chassis for Commercial Bus Market

Freightliner Custom Chassis Corporation (FCCC) introduced its newest commercial bus chassis, the MB-65, at the BusCon 2009 trade show.

The MB-65, with a lowered engine and softer suspension, is powered by the Allison automatic six-speed transmission and a 2010 Cummins ISB 6.7-liter engine with up to 300 hp. Cummins 2010 engines utilize Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) technology, which is proven to meet long-term EPA 2010 emissions requirements. SCR dramatically reduces oxides of nitrogen, commonly known as NOx, particulate matter and fine particle emissions without increasing fuel consumption as do alternative methods.

"Freightliner Custom Chassis Corporation developed the MB-65 to meet evolving customer needs," said Jonathan Randall, director of sales and marketing for FCCC. "With the 2010 emissions regulations upon us, FCCC worked with Cummins to introduce a commercial bus chassis that has reduced emissions, but the same quality and reliability associated with existing FCCC commercial bus chassis."

The new chassis model from FCCC also boasts Hendrickson SofTek taper leaf suspension on the front and rear of the chassis, contributing to a smoother ride and better handling.

The MB-65 also possesses a 55-degree wheel cut.

"Maneuverability within a metropolitan area is a consistent challenge for bus operators," Randall said. "Turning corners, entering and exiting parking lots all present difficulties during a normal day for the driver. FCCC developed the 55-degree wheel cut to help operators effectively maneuver through our nation's most congested cities without concern."

Ideal for light- to medium-duty shuttle and big bus applications, the
MB-65 was built with the comfort and safety of its operators in mind.
The front-end diesel engine is lowered, resulting in a flat-floor driver cockpit area, enabling bus operators to safely move from the cockpit to the passenger area without having to step over a "doghouse." The flat-floor cockpit enhances the safety of the driver, while also providing enough room for easy maneuvering. The flat-floor design also offers a benefit to bus body builders, allowing them to develop the body without concessions for the doghouse.

The MB-65 is currently available for prototype orders, with production expected to commence in the first quarter of 2010.

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