SAN ANTONIO – Several exhibitors made their first appearances at UMA Motorcoach Expo in 2018 or returned after absences. Their companies offered such services and products as coach leasing, upholstery, onboard technology, finance, insurance, maintenance equipment and vehicle care.
The San Jose, Calif.-based Lilee Systems is a passenger Wi-Fi company that also provides entertainment, driving behavior monitoring and ELDs.
“Our entertainment system can upload videos for your passengers to play on your coaches during your ride so it doesn’t use any bandwidth and doesn’t cost anything,” said Anthony Andrews, strategic account executive. “We can also upload advertisements so you can sell a spot running on the bottom of the screen while you run movies so you can be making money.”
The Pelham, Ala., company makes a composite panel that is high-density polyurethane foam reinforced with fiberglass. It is a direct placement for wood subfloors that tend to rot, said Chris Drahman, senior vice president of sales and marketing.
“This does not absorb water, mold or mildew or allow fungus. It even blocks insect and termite infestations,” he said. “If an older bus smells musty, that smell comes from the mold spores in the seating or subfloor.”
Master’s Transportation of Belton, Mo., has more than 30 years of experience in selling, leasing, renting and repairing motorcoaches and shuttles, said General Manager Gene Turovsky. The company offers maintenance, parts, body shop and refurbishing services at eight locations across the country.
“We have a presence in all markets,” Turovsky said. “Just in our rental fleet we have over 100 vehicles in Texas, 200 in Missouri and 100 in Denver.”
The Anaheim, Calif.-based Dartco specializes in Allison Transmissions at four locations nationwide in California, Texas, North Carolina and Indiana, said J.R. Sellars, president and CEO.
“Two of our locations are authorized Allison dealers to do new-product warranty work,” he said. “We ship around the world. This year is our 40th anniversary.”
The Cheshire, United Kingdom, company provides the hardware and services for on-bus digital systems including entertainment, Internet access and Wi-Fi. “We also can connect with vehicle data logging systems and transport that information off the bus,” said Dave Sampson, commercial director.
The company’s Juxta suite can set a limit on complimentary bandwidth for individual passengers and the purchase of larger data packages. The suite also permits onboard advertising and shopping capabilities.
As its name implies, the company is based in Victoria, Australia, and it allows bus owners to keep their wheels polished all the time as part of maintenance without having to send them away, said Chris McKee, who works from the company’s U.S. base in Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.
The polisher consists of a wheeled cart with an electrical cord powering a motor. “The machine comes with cutting pads or polishing pads. If you have a rough wheel, you can cut it back, then polish it,” McKee said.
Pro Image Car Care
The Detroit company sells the Luminous Special Edition by Pro Image, a product that can detail and clean an entire bus — interior, exterior, windows, seats and paint.
“It works on any surface and cleans and protects and shines,” said company owner Darrell Weberg. “It is 100 percent waterless. You do not have to wash the bus, you can just use this product. It has a sanitizer in it as well, so you can clean the interiors of the buses really good with it.”
Infanti Bus & Upholstery
Infanti, of Linden, N.J., does upholstery, embroidery and branding services for motorcoach operators. “We do refurbishing and install electrical outlets, USB ports and Wi-Fi,” said company owner Elizabeth Deffer.
“We also do signature cleaning for coach interiors and flooring. We are a one-stop shop for buses.” Her company was founded 45 years ago and has a background as manufacturer of high-end banquet chairs and gaming stools.
Infinity Luxury Woven Vinyl
This woven vinyl floor covering company is based in Dalton, Ga. “It has a high-end, luxury look and has a 10-year fade warranty,” said John Michael Lloyd, director of recreational and commercial vehicle sales.
“It has a special backing that gives you anti-microbial and anti-bacterial protection and will not promote the growth of mildew or mold.” He said the company has been serving the marine industry and now is moving into the bus market.
Transit Cooling Solutions
Transit Cooling of Midland, Ont., manufactures aftermarket engine and transmission radiator and oil coolers. “All the manufacturing is done to our standards,” said Randy Lalonde.
“We build to the exact replica, but if we determine there is an issue with the original equipment product we will build a fix into the replacement. We cover all the aftermarket and are an inventory-based company. Anything in our catalog is in stock for shipment the same day it is ordered.”
BBB Industries of Daphne, Ala., remanufactures starters, alternators and hydraulic and air brake calipers. “We have complete coverage and very high quality standards and 24-hour shipping all over the country,” said Marketing Manager Greg Owens.
“We won’t do a straight remanufacture if we can improve the part in the process. We take the OE unit, analyze and look at the issues like leaks or gasket issues or over-rotating on the starters. Then our engineers will come up with a fix.”
This Irvine, Calif., company describes itself as the number one independent, non-captive lender in the country. “We are very diversified. I am working with the new motorcoach division to finance new and used motorcoaches, shuttle buses, vans, limousines and sedans,” said Edmund Felix, vice president of sales.
“We can go back further than most companies can as far as collateral, to 2002, which is extremely unique in the industry, and can help operators who prefer to do used equipment.”
Denver-based Autosock’s product is made for buses and semi-trucks that have to go out in the snow. “It is a high-performance polyester traction device that is legal across the United States where you are required to have a traction device under certain conditions,” said Chuck Abourezk, sales manager.
“It goes on in about eight minutes and covers 100 percent of the footprint of the tire. It weighs 4.6 pounds compared to chains that can weigh 30 to 40 pounds.”
Chemfree of Norcross, Ga., sells the Smartwasher, a microbial parts washer that does not use solvents that must be discarded as hazardous waste. The washers circulate fluid through mat pads that are embedded with the same microbes used to remediate oil spills, said Kathy Brito, the company’s sales and customer support representative.
“The oil and grease from the parts you are cleaning goes through our mats. The microbes eat the oil and grease. There is a continuous cycle of self-cleaning.”
DriverSchedule of Hartford, Conn., sells software that fills a need for tracking driver availability and performing human resources functions for fleet operators, said Michael Lindsey, who owns the company and a limousine/bus transportation company. “One of the biggest challenges we face is knowing when a driver prefers to work so I can do my best to give him work when her prefers it.” His company allows drivers to post their desired schedules in two-week blocks.
Taiwan-based MSI has been in the computer business for 30 years and does $3.5 billion in annual global sales, but its Funtoro transit line is just entering the U.S. market, said Managing Director Scott Chen.
“We supply entertainment and telematics systems to automotive industries, including the bus industry and trucking. You can see if the driver is speeding or doing something he is not supposed to do. We can generate monthly reports on each driver.”
BAE o Rochester, UK, provides a variety of transportation electrical systems for North America, Europe and Hong Kong. “We have 8,000 systems out across the globe,” said Ross Hobson, capability manager of power and propulsion solutions.
BAE propulsion systems range from full-battery electric — vehicles without engines — to fuel cell electrics and systems matching electric drive systems with diesel or compressed natural gas engines.
MEE, or Making Eligibility Easy, is a division of ISB, a Canadian company that specializes in pre-employment background checks. MEE, based in Milton, Ont., was designed to streamline all the processes involved in recruiting and qualifying commercial drivers and getting them on the road efficiently, safely and in a cost-effective manager, said Charlie Charalambous, director of client services.
“We provide the opportunity to purchase and store all driver-required documents through a single website.”
Richland, Wash.-based AmeriFuel is a division of R.E. Powell & SeaPort, which is one of the country’s largest petroleum products distributors. AmeriFuel develops customized fueling programs that include competitive pricing, comprehensive reporting, tracking and monitoring tools, fuel cards and Cardlock options for optimal control and security.
The programs can track fuel usage in real time through an online portal and set transaction limits and fuel caps.
ELD Solutions of Brentwood, Tenn., offers multiple methods of meeting and exceeding regulation standards. Its packages can go beyond ELD compliance to include vehicle location tracking, IFT mileage reports, driver communication, geofencing with customized location alerts, monitoring of engine diagnostics and driver behavior and customized alert creation.
ELD Solutions can produce more than 100 reports and dashboards to aid in trend detection. The systems can be integrated with third-party software.