MAN Truck & Bus
Protecting the health of drivers and passengers has been top priority as a safety issue in the bus sector since the start of the coronavirus crisis. MAN Truck & Bus was quick to develop and is continuously extending its hygiene concepts to support public operators in their efforts to protect passengers and drivers from being infected with coronavirus. “Expedient, effective and preventive coronavirus measures are extremely important in regaining and increasing passenger trust in travelling by bus”, says Rudi Kuchta, Head of the Bus Business Unit at MAN Truck & Bus. The latest offering from MAN – in addition to numerous other measures – now includes efficient microparticle filters with an antiviral effect. These are available as optional extras ex-works for all new MAN and NEOPLAN buses, and as a retrofit solution via the MAN service network for vehicles that are already in service.
Original MAN antiviral interior filters provide active protection against viral transmission by substantially reducing the concentration of viral aerosols inside the vehicle. The multiple layers in the system’s structure make this possible. They effectively filter and capture harmful environmental gases as well as inorganic and biological particles and aerosols. Their concentration in the air is significantly reduced thanks to the high filtration performance of the first two layers. The antiviral effect of the third biological layer almost completely inactivates any remaining viruses. “This means our interior filters make a significant contribution to ensuring that the cleanest possible air can be provided on buses and they further minimise the risk of viral transmission within the vehicle”, explains Heinz Kiess, head of bus marketing at MAN Truck & Bus.
The efficient air conditioning systems with which MAN and NEOPLAN buses are equipped as standard already ensure a very low risk of infection in bus interiors. Summer and winter they provide effective air exchange and thus an ideal fresh air supply. The air inside the bus is completely replaced with fresh air every two to four minutes – significantly more often than is the case in offices or living rooms.
The hygiene protection screen for the driver's compartment is another building block in the comprehensive MAN concept for protection against infection with coronavirus. These are available ex-works for virtually all MAN and NEOPLAN urban buses, interurban buses and coaches, and via the MAN service network for retrofitting. The screen reaches from floor to ceiling and protects against SARS-CoV-2 viruses and other infections. The solution is therefore expected to contribute significantly to bus drivers being able to work as safely as possible. “Of course these specially developed hygiene protection screens meet all the statutory requirements and never restrict the driver’s view”, Heinz Kiess clarifies. Hand disinfectant dispensers can also be retrofitted to provide additional protection for passengers. “All the measures and solutions we’ve developed in-house are available for new buses as well as for those already in service. And even used vehicles from MAN TopUsed can of course be retrofitted with coronavirus protection measures.”
MAN ACC Stop & Go This adaptive cruise control system regulates driving speed and maintains the right distance to traffic ahead.
MAN AttentionGuard This attention alert system detects changes in steering behaviour and warns drivers if there are signs of declining attention.
MAN BrakeMatic This electronic brake managementsystem helps in safely adhering to the preset maximum speed.
MAN EfficientCruise This system takes into account the route ahead and determines the most cost-effective driving style.
ESP (Electronic Stability Programme) This electronic stability programme assists drivers in critical situations where a bend has been negotiated too quickly.
MAN Emergency Brake Assist (EBA) This system reduces the risk of accidents in road traffic by detecting emergency braking situations and warning the driver.
MAN Lane Change Support Sensors detect a hazardous situation when changing lanes and provide early warning to the driver.
A different safety aspect that is always the main priority on bus journeys is avoiding accidents. Technological advances in the assistance systems are enabling continuous improvements in driving safety. The MAN ComfortSteering electronically assisted steering system will be available for MAN and NEOPLAN buses from 2022. This hydraulic steering system is augmented by additional steering torque from an electric motor to make steering much easier and more comfortable. It means the ideal amount of electric steering power is available in every driving situation, so the electronic control unit relieves the driver and consequently ensures greater safety. Sensors in the assistance system constantly evaluate steering movements and vehicle data, such as speed and load. Depending on the situation, the ComfortSteering assists the steering movement by adding or subtracting steering torque. The steering wheel automatically reverts to the centre position if is released. The driver can also benefit from the force-enhancing assistance from added electronic steering torque during manoeuvring: with very little effort the bus can be manoeuvred with great precision and smoothness. MAN ComfortSteering also assists with lane maintenance during longer journeys. The active steering system automatically reduces the steering force at higher speeds by subtracting electronic steering torque.
Also new: from next year MAN will be offering Lane Return Assist (LRA) for its buses. MAN Lane Return Assist helps the driver to keep to a lane by actively steering the vehicle back into the lane. If a bus is about to leave its designated lane – without activation of the indicator – the system corrects the steering torque and automatically steers the vehicle back into its driving line. The driver can always override the corrective steering torque. The MAN ComfortSteering system is a prerequisite for equipping a bus with Lane Return Assist.
Safety for all road users is what really motivates and drives us.
Goodbye to blind spots MAN OptiView provides drivers with a full overview of blind spots. This is facilitated by two cameras on each side of the vehicle.
MAN OptiView is the world’s first mirror replacement system for coaches and was presented at the IAA in 2018. This digital system works by having two cameras on each side of the vehicle that project video images of the side and rear areas of the bus in real time onto two monitors located within the vehicle. They can display a larger area that is the case with conventional mirrors and enable the driver to have full oversight of blind spots. The driver also benefits from better visibility during rain, snow and at night, since each camera automatically adjusts the image to the respective situation. Even glare effects, caused for instance by headlights in the dark or when the sun is low in the sky, no longer impair visibility. But the system also scores points in terms of economic efficiency: because the use of OptiView reduces the air resistance of the bus by around ten per cent compared to vehicles with conventional mirror systems. The improved aerodynamics enable operators to reduce fuel consumption. This mirror replacement system is available for all NEOPLAN Skyliner, Cityliner and Tourliner models as well as for the MAN Lion‘s Coach.
ditional support in avoiding turning accidents is provided by the active warning turn-off assistant with pedestrian detection. It virtually gives bus drivers additional pairs of eyes, which are particularly helpful in intersection traffic. A front camera and cameras on both sides of the vehicle automatically monitor the surroundings. The system warns of collisions in the front area and when turning by means of visual and acoustic signals. Pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists in the blind spot are reliably detected. The turn-off assistant is available for MAN and NEOPLAN buses ex works and as a retrofit solution.
To relieve bus drivers to the greatest extent possible and make journeys in urban buses, interurban buses and coaches even safer and more comfortable, MAN Truck & Bus now offers over a dozen different assistance systems, some of which support an especially cost-effective driving style. These include MAN ACC Stop & Go, MAN EfficientCruise with EfficientRoll, MAN Comfort Drive Suspension (CDS), MAN AttentionGuard, MAN Lane Guard System (LGS) and MAN Emergency Brake Assist (EBA). “Increasing safety for all road users is what really motivates and drives us. That’s why we put so much of our experience and expertise into developing innovative assistance systems,” says Heinz Kiess, head of bus product marketing at MAN, adding: “But as well as improving safety, these also provide other benefits: many of our systems protect the environment, for instance, and contribute to optimisation of the total cost of ownership.”