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On ‎6‎/‎28‎/‎2016 at 0:11 PM, Big CJ said:

This was posted on Facebook and I think this contract is for 270 buses.

MARTA.jpg

Wow, it looks like my predictions were correct that Gillig would have a chance, despite one user believing that they would order from New Flyer 100% of the time.

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12 hours ago, ABQ RIDE said:

Wow, it looks like my predictions were correct that Gillig would have a chance, despite one user believing that they would order from New Flyer 100% of the time.

I was shocked when I saw that. Gotta give it up to Gillig for winning that contract, they broke the 26 year streak of New Flyer buses at MARTA. 

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On 6/30/2016 at 2:48 AM, Big CJ said:

I was shocked when I saw that. Gotta give it up to Gillig for winning that contract, they broke the 26 year streak of New Flyer buses at MARTA. 

I think we can also finally put to bed the notion that 'big' agencies will NEVER buy Gillig. (Okay yeah maybe not MTA or CTA, those will probably always be NFI or Nova due to the massive orders. Although Gilligs do roam the streets of Chitown with various private operators, so they definitely can handle the environment of a big city.)

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1 hour ago, MVTArider said:

I think we can also finally put to bed the notion that 'big' agencies will NEVER buy Gillig. (Okay yeah maybe not MTA or CTA, those will probably always be NFI or Nova due to the massive orders. Although Gilligs do roam the streets of Chitown with various private operators, so they definitely can handle the environment of a big city.)

So who's the largest Gillig operator then by size?

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2 hours ago, MVTArider said:

I think we can also finally put to bed the notion that 'big' agencies will NEVER buy Gillig. (Okay yeah maybe not MTA or CTA, those will probably always be NFI or Nova due to the massive orders. Although Gilligs do roam the streets of Chitown with various private operators, so they definitely can handle the environment of a big city.)

Yep, and there was one user here who thought that MARTA would always buy from New Flyer exclusively despite the FTA procurement rules.

I probably wouldn't necessarily rule out CTA either.  However, MTA requires a "shaker test" for all of its orders, which Gillig buses have never been tested through.  Due to this requirement, Gillig probably won't take a chance bidding on MTA orders due to the possibility that they might fail.

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Just now, Transit man2015 said:

I want to say Lynx they have a boatload of Gilligs from Diesel Hybrid and now CNG

I have read somewhere that Metro Transit of Minneapolis is Gillig's largest customer, although I don't know if there is any truth to that statement.

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2 hours ago, MVTArider said:

I think we can also finally put to bed the notion that 'big' agencies will NEVER buy Gillig. (Okay yeah maybe not MTA or CTA, those will probably always be NFI or Nova due to the massive orders. Although Gilligs do roam the streets of Chitown with various private operators, so they definitely can handle the environment of a big city.)

Believe it or not, Gillig actually did bid on CTA's contract. IDK what caused them to lose it, but that did happen. As for large customers, Metro Transit is indeed Gillig's largest customer. They also have large orders from airport shuttles like Hertz, Avis, to name a few, who they supplied many buses for. Lynx and Disney tend to order large numbers of buses from Gillig as well. 

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My understanding has always been that Gillig chooses not to bid on large orders, which are generally for the larger systems, because they have a strict and methodical production schedule, and they just don't have the ability to finish orders for 200 or 300 buses in a short period of time like NFI or Nova could. Now that they've moved to a larger factory, their capacity may have increased to the point where they can bid on the big orders.

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On 7/1/2016 at 2:55 PM, ABQ RIDE said:

I probably wouldn't necessarily rule out CTA either.  However, MTA requires a "shaker test" for all of its orders, which Gillig buses have never been tested through.  Due to this requirement, Gillig probably won't take a chance bidding on MTA orders due to the possibility that they might fail.

I doubt Gillig is worried about failing a shaker test - they have just traditionally preferred to do business with customers who are easier and more straightforward to do business with. 

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On 7/3/2016 at 6:17 PM, Orion 1200 said:

My understanding has always been that Gillig chooses not to bid on large orders, which are generally for the larger systems, because they have a strict and methodical production schedule, and they just don't have the ability to finish orders for 200 or 300 buses in a short period of time like NFI or Nova could. Now that they've moved to a larger factory, their capacity may have increased to the point where they can bid on the big orders.

Nice contribution. We shouldn't forget that Gillig is moving to a bigger production facility.

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On 7/1/2016 at 2:55 PM, ABQ RIDE said:

Yep, and there was one user here who thought that MARTA would always buy from New Flyer exclusively despite the FTA procurement rules.

I probably wouldn't necessarily rule out CTA either.  However, MTA requires a "shaker test" for all of its orders, which Gillig buses have never been tested through.  Due to this requirement, Gillig probably won't take a chance bidding on MTA orders due to the possibility that they might fail.

Gillig does not want to bid on MTA orders to due the custom specs and warranties that MTA puts into its bids

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1 minute ago, mattb816789 said:

Are there any agencies other than Orlando and Northern Kentucky that have already started to retire their BRT buses?

PalmTran of West Palm Beach Florida most of the routes they have got some miles on them so most of their buses will reach 500,000 miles before 12yrs and they like to retire buses at 6-7yrs

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15 minutes ago, mattb816789 said:

Are there any agencies other than Orlando and Northern Kentucky that have already started to retire their BRT buses?

So where's the evidence for TANK retiring their BRT's?  Thanks!

And add WMATA as another agency that's unlikely to get Gillig buses.  Their only shot would probably for the replacements of that agency's 30ft. Orion VII OG CNG buses, and eventually their EPA-2010 diesel and hybrid sister buses, as a 30ft. version of New Flyer Xcelsior (WMATA's preferred bus of late) is not offered.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Can someone explain to me the differences between the 29' Advantage/BRT and the 35/40' models. I've noticed that the 29' buses seem to have smaller wheels/tires and they have a circular wheel cut-out instead of the one that looks like half of an octagon on the longer models. Why is that?

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3 hours ago, gilligfanboi said:

Can someone explain to me the differences between the 29' Advantage/BRT and the 35/40' models. I've noticed that the 29' buses seem to have smaller wheels/tires and they have a circular wheel cut-out instead of the one that looks like half of an octagon on the longer models. Why is that?

It has to do with the engineering of the bus. Suspensions is a bit different. Also the rear high floor section is shorter, so the air bags are in between the rear tires instead if in front and behind them. It also allows added three seats above the front curbside tire, if they used standard tires, it would be too high for most to climb up, which is why seats are not there on 35' and 40' models. Hybrid models also use the older (shorter) roof cover so that it doesn't cover the front ceiling emergency exit. Not sure what the set up is on the 30' CNG buses as far as the roof cover. 

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Looks like New Flyer is gaining Gillig customers left and right!

WSTA gets more hybrid buses

featuring an XDE35 from WSTA in Winston-Salem, North Carolina (Greensboro in the sane region already has XDE40's).

Greater Lafayette Public Transportation (CityBus) Awards New Flyer a Contract for Six 40-Foot Xcelsior® CNG Buses

Waukesha Metro Transit Awards New Flyer a Contract for Two 35-Foot Xcelsior® Diesel Buses

Lane Transit Awards New Flyer a Contract for up to 75 Xcelsior® Transit Buses

And a previous Gillig gain from New Flyer reverts to form:

Long Beach Awards New Flyer with a Contract for up to 129 Xcelsior® Buses

Finally, while COMET/Central Midlands RTA was never a Gillig customer, I have no doubt that mom and pop agencies currently using older 35ft. Gillig LF's will piggyback from this order to get 35ft. Xcelsior's as replacement buses, as I am skeptical that COMET will need all 75 buses:

Columbia, SC Awards New Flyer a Contract for 75 Xcelsior® Buses

So what do you think is the cause of these developments from the following:

1. The Xcelsior is simply a superior bus.

2. The Gillig LF, being a roughly 20 year-old design, is getting long in the tooth.

3. There is an aggressive marketing pitch from New Flyer.

4. Gillig has become a victim of its own success after gaining orders from moderately large agencies like San Diego MTS, Valley Metro, Greater Cleveland RTA and MARTA, leading to production capacity issues.

5. Gillig is experiencing transition pain as they moves their plant from Hayward to Livermore.

Your insights are surely appreciated!

 

 

 

 

 

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Competition is probably the answer.  New Flyer has lost major customers to NovaBus for now (or, in the case of Toronto, hasn't been able to pick up Orion's old business).  They also have to keep the new Xcelsior lines at the Anniston plant running so they may be more willing to sharpen their pencils and drop the price for now.

If the Gillig Low Floor design is 'long in the tooth', then so is the NovaBus LFS which came out the same year. 

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