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Webberbus order eight Versas for new P&R contract

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Client: Optare
Date: 19th Mar 10

Leading Somerset independent operator Webberbus has ordered eight Optare Versa low-floor midibuses to use on a newly-won contract for the ‘Taunton Flyer’ Park and Ride service. It will commence operating the seven-year contract from October 2010 following delivery of the Versas from Optare’s Leeds plant in September.

 Somerset County Council awarded Webberbus the contract on the basis that they use dedicated high-specification buses and achieve first year savings in excess of £100,000. The contract covers two sites: the 600 car capacity Silk Mills site and the recently opened 1,000 car capacity Taunton Gateway site. Buses will operate Monday to Saturday, at either 7 minute or 12 minute intevals from 06:40 am to 07:15 pm.

 Tim Gardner, Webberbus Managing Director, said: “We are delighted to have been awarded this important contract and we have chosen to operate the Optare Versa on it because of our positive experience with the model over the past two years. With its modern, distinctive and stylish appearance Versa also projects the innovative high quality image we want for both our company and for the service”.

 The 11.1 metre Versas, will have leather Esteban Civic V3 seats of which 37 are fixed and three are tip-ups in the wheelchair/buggy bay.  

 The comprehensive specification will also include an Optare Eco-Drive dashboard, Actia Telematics and Hanover Displays’ GPS driven Hanvox+ system, which provides real time and next destination information by voice and by a 17 inch display inside the saloon. A seven-camera Activ CCTV system, including external cameras facing forward and to the rear, will also be fitted.

 The chosen power unit is the six-cylinder Cummins ISBe engine rated at 201 bhp (150 kW) as used in existing Webberbus Versas. This is matched to an Allison 2100 Series five-speed automatic transmission.

 Webberbus is a family-run business and has been providing bus and coach transport in Somerset for around 60 years. It operates from a modern purpose-built site at Bridgwater along with smaller depots in Minehead and Weston super Mare. It runs a 55-strong fleet ranging from minibuses to dedicated Yellow School buses and full-size luxury touring coaches. More information can be found on the company’s website


For further information please contact:

 David Rowlands, Automotive PR, 020 7494 8050, e-mail:

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