DaimlerChrysler Commercial Buses North America SLF 200

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DaimlerChrysler SLF 200
Thomas Dennis SLF 235
Years of manufacture 1999 to 2007
Length 29 to 35 feet
Width 96 inches
Power/Fuel Diesel, CNG

The DaimlerChrysler Commercial Buses North America SLF 200 (usually shortened to SLF) is a low floor midibus. The bus was the product of a joint venture between Mayflower Corporation subsidiaries Walter Alexander Coachbuilders and Dennis Bus and Coach and Freightliner subsidiary Thomas Built Buses.[1] The joint venture was known as Thomas Dennis. Beginning in 2003, the SLF was sold via the Orion direct sales organization and through DaimlerChrysler Commercial Bus dealers. All SLF buses under DaimlerChrysler received the "SLF200" badge in lieu of the Thomas badge.


Model number Debut Length
SLF 229 2003 29'
SLF 230 1999 30'
SLF 232 CNG 2001 32'
SLF 235 2002 35'


Early model SLF 230

The Thomas Dennis SLF was a left-hand drive version of the Dennis Dart SLF with an Alexander ALX200 body. The first few demonstrators and prototypes were fully built in the United Kingdom by Dennis and Alexander. Later buses were manufactured overseas and then delivered to the United States in a completely knocked down (CKD) form with final assembly at the Thomas plant in Greensboro, North Carolina.[2] Full production at the North Carolina plant eventually followed.

The early demonstrators and prototypes had lower profile front and rear bumpers. Some production units would keep these bumpers, but others would sport the thicker bumpers commonly found on other North American buses.

CNG-powered SLF 232

When the 35 foot SLF 235 was introduced, the radiator was moved from the open side to the closed side. The larger radiator protruded into the passenger cabin and took up some of the space for the two rearmost closed side seats. Therefore, those seats were moved up.

All SLF models used a roof mounted HVAC, except for the CNG-powered SLF 232. The bus sported roof mounted CNG tanks in an enclosure with the HVAC moved to the space behind the rear seats. This also added length to the bus.

As a DaimlerChrysler product, the SLF was made available with a four or six cylinder Mercedes-Benz engine. The SLF 230's engine compartment was modified with the radiator moved to the closed side, but unlike the SLF 235, it did not intrude into the rearmost row of seats. This model was known as the SLF 229.

Other photos



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Demonstrator and engineering units

Below is a list of known demonstrators and engineering bues

Thumbnail Length Year VIN Engine Transmission Notes
30' 1999 SFD182AL6XGW13472 Cummins ISB 175 hp Allison AT-545
York Region Transit 9901-a.jpg 30' 1999 SFD182AL3XGW13851 Cummins ISB Allison AT-545
30' 1999 SFD182ALXXGW14124 Cummins ISB 185 hp Allison AT-545
30' 1999 SFD182ALXXGW14186 Cummins ISB Allison AT-545
35' 2000 SFD121AL1YGU10101 Cummins ISB 260 hp Allison B300R
32' 2000 SFD241CL9YGU10102 Cummins B5.9G 230 hp Allison B300R
  • Powered by CNG
  • Submitted for Altoona Test August 2001
30' 2001 5DF230DA41JA02242
30' 2001 5DF230DA62JA02244
35' 2002 5DF235DAX2JA25622
35' 2002 5DF235DB42JA32879 Detroit Diesel MBE906 Allison B300R
  • Displayed at OTE 2002
  • Submitted for Altoona Test late 2003
DaimlerChrysler Commercial Buses North America SLF demo.jpg 29' 2003 5DF229DA63JA38203 Mercedes-Benz MBE904 Allison
29' 2003 5DF229DAX3JA46594 Detroit Diesel MBE904 Allison 2000 Series
  • Submitted for Altoona Test May 2004
35' 2005 Mercedes-Benz MBE904


  1. "Freightliner Announces New Joint Venture to Increase North American Bus Market Position." PR Newswire, 1999, pp. 1.
  2. Rob Stokes Associate Business Editor. "Scots Jobs Secure in Mayflower American Bus Drive: 1 Edition." Scotland on Sunday, 2000.