Wrightbus Lands £28M Vehicle Order

Ballymena-based company Wrightbus announced today that it is set to benefit from an order worth over £28m from FirstGroup plc., as the FTSE 250 listed company announced vehicle investment plans for the forthcoming financial year for its UK Bus operations.

Wrightbus faced significant competition from a number of manufacturers throughout the world and had to meet FirstGroup’s exacting technical and commercial requirements. The vehicle order reinforces the Northern Ireland company’s position as a world-leading bus supplier.

Wright Group Managing Director, Mark Nodder says: “Wrightbus is thrilled to be awarded this substantial order for 179 vehicles from FirstGroup. This order shows FirstGroup’s commitment to investing in programmes geared to encouraging the public to switch from cars to public transport, which will reduce both congestion and damage to the environment. It is a huge endorsement of the development of our StreetLite range of lightweight buses, which proved themselves best in class in every category at fuel trials conducted at Millbrook Proving Grounds under the close scrutiny of FirstGroup’s engineers. We look forward to continuing our close working relationship with FirstGroup, a partnership which has lasted more than 17 years”

The order is the largest to date for the StreetLite lightweight bus which have been developed by Wrightbus and were first launched in June 2010 with support from Invest NI.

Giles Fearnley, Managing Director of First UK Bus. said he was delighted that First continues to support British bus manufacturers. “Manufacturing partners like Wrightbus continue to lead the world in terms of quality and value for money. I’m pleased that our tradition of supporting the British transport industry remains strong.”

The interior of each vehicle will be laid out to First’s specification which was designed last year following extensive customer research. This seeks to maximise the flexibility for both buggies and wheelchairs whilst providing additional hand rails for all passengers whether seated or standing. All vehicles will be fitted with Wi-Fi so that customers can stay connected whilst on the move.

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