New motorcoach sales declined during second quarter

WASHINGTON – Sales of new motorcoaches declined slightly in the second quarter of 2017 compared with the same period in 2016.

The American Bus Association Foundation’s Coach Manufacturer Survey reported that 624 new coaches were sold during April through May of this year, down from 651 during the three-month period last year.

“The reason for the decline over last year was due to a large fleet purchase by one company,” said Peter Pantuso, president and CEO of the ABA Foundation. “The sales numbers this year show a return to normalization in purchasing, which still is at a healthy level for the industry.”

The strongest segment during the second quarter was 45-foot coaches, with 465 purchased by private-sector companies, a 4.5 percent increase from last year’s second quarter.

Sales of 45-foot coaches to the public sector declined 10.2 percent, to 88 from 98.

Sales of smaller motorcoaches, which had been increasing in recent years, declined during the second quarter of this year. Thirty- to 35-foot coach sales to the private sector fell from 75 to 40, a 46.7 percent decrease.

“We continue to see an increase in bigger buses this year, which is always a good sign for group travel,” Pantuso said. “While the quarter over quarter saw a slight decline, we expect sales of all sizes of coaches to pick up through the year.”

Other second-quarter 2017 survey results included:

  • Sales of pre-owned motorcoaches totaled 304, up slightly from 301 last year.
  • Shell sales totaled 20, up from 12.
  • Cummins had the highest number of engines in the new coaches, with 286, followed by Volvo with 191, Detroit with 160 and Mercedes with seven.
  • Most of the new coaches – 616 — had Allison transmissions, followed by 25 with ZFs and three with Volvos.

The ABA Foundation quarterly reports, conducted by John Dunham & Associates, are based on surveys of the major motorcoach manufacturers that sell vehicles in the United States and Canada.

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