News 2023
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News 2023

Unique and exciting design, exceptional variance and flexibility, maximum profitability, top safety and practical solutions down to the smallest detail – the completely newly developed Setra MultiClass 500 LE sets new standards among low entry inter-city buses.

March 22, 2023

  • Extended program: New Setra MultiClass quartet
  • Unique design: iconic look
  • Versatile: Passenger compartment, cockpit, driver assistance systems
  • New: Predictive Powertrain Control in inter-city operation
  • New: Preventive Brake Assist 2
  • Outstanding profitability: from drive to digitalization with unique services

Shortly after the premiere of the next generation of the fascinating Setra ComfortClass 500 and TopClass 500 touring coaches, Setra is now opening a new chapter in this segment with the completely newly developed low entry inter-city buses from the MultiClass 500 LE series.

The new MultiClass 500 LE offers a particularly wide product range which is now based on four models. As low entry (LE) vehicles, the quartet combines two worlds: Low-floor convenience and travel comfort. Up to just in front of the rear axle, it has a consistently low-floor design and impresses with fast and convenient entry and exit in the front section. Three low-rise steps lead into the rear section in front of the rear axle. With touring coach technology for the drive and chassis, it also sets standards in comfort for long journeys.

The MultiClass 500 LE range includes regular-service bus models with lengths from 10.51 to 14.52 meters and two as well as three axles. They cover applications ranging from peri-urban to long-distance inter-city transport in sparsely populated regions. This means that the new bus generation is proven and tested in the traditional regular and school transport sector, providing shuttle services or feeder and company travel.

Setra is synonymous with fascinating yet durable design – even with a practical low entry vehicle. The exterior of the new MultiClass 500 LE is already deliberately divided into two vehicle sections. Both segments are connected by a wide vertical profile. The clear division of the passenger area as it were into front and back seats make the outside of the new inter-city buses appear less weighty.

Thanks to the rounded A-pillars with dark trim at the front and the equally shaped corner profiles at the back, the conventional square angles resolve into soft and flowing shapes. The roof seems to float above the body of the inter-city bus. The result is a unique, airy and lightweight design.

At the front, the MultiClass 500 LE takes on the new Setra distinctive look that the brand introduced with the current touring coaches. On the left and right above the front wheels, the characteristic brand element points to the origin of the new MultiClass 500 LE – it is a genuine Setra. This is also demonstrated by the brand logo on the equally strikingly shaped rear end.

The extraordinary variety of the new Setra MultiClass 500 LE starts with the choice of doors. For entrance one, a single-leaf door is available in two widths and - a new addition - an even wider double door can also be selected. Entrance two can be customized as a single-leaf or double door. All models can be supplied with a third door behind the rear axle on request.

Depending on the respective door position and door variant, companies can choose between outward-swivelling and inward-swivelling doors and swing/sliding doors to suit their individual application. The range of ramps for passengers with reduced mobility is similarly generous. For the first time, a mechanical folding ramp for door one is also available.

Completely low-floor front section, platforms on the left, right or both sides in the direction of travel – the new Setra MultiClass 500 LE has almost no limits when it comes to passenger compartment designs. The interior is practical yet welcoming, from the full and half-height glass partitions in different designs, smooth wall coverings with decorative foils or cozy needle-fleece surfaces to the combination of light and dark paneling. The seating is just as diverse, with designs ranging from urban to touring requirements.

The heating, ventilation and climate control of the Setra MultiClass 500 LE are tailored to your needs. If climate control is desired, the first expansion stage is an air-conditioned driver cockpit. If temperature control of the passenger area is sufficient in regions with a mild climate, a new version called EvoCool light Basic with two roof-mounted air-conditioning modules is ideal. The classic EvoCool Basic roof-mounted air-conditioning system is particularly powerful. As special equipment, it is possible to equip the vehicle with air nozzles and reading lights in conjunction with the roof-mounted air-conditioning system.

The driver cockpit is just as diverse as the passenger compartment. There are three variants to choose from: Cockpit City (city) in accordance with the specifications of the VDV (Verband Deutscher Verkehrsunternehmen, Association of German Transport Companies) and Cockpit Basic City (city/inter-city) or Cockpit Basic (inter-city) at touring coach level.

Regardless of the cockpit, the new MultiClass 500 LE supports driving personnel. This begins with the standard rain and light sensor and continues with the standard electronic parking brake. The optional 360° camera system offers perfect all-around visibility when maneuvering and in tight spaces. Thanks to this system, passers-by, cyclists and obstacles that are otherwise difficult or impossible for the driver to see can also be detected. The ambient lighting for reversing is also available as a significant support for maneuvering.

In conjunction with the fully automated GO 250 8 PowerShift manual transmission, the driver is supported by the latest version of the smart, fuel-saving Predictive Powertrain Control (PPC) cruise control. It integrates a driving style into the automatic gearshift system which has been adapted to the topography. The map material now covers almost all extra-urban roads in Europe in addition to highways and main roads. PPC takes into consideration intersections and traffic circles, and is linked to adaptive cruise control. Based on the stored maps, PPC automatically reduces the speed when entering towns, before country road bends with a tight radius or obstacles such as traffic circles and stop or right-of-way points.

Every Setra is also a genuine safety bus. An example in the new MultiClass 500 LE is the Preventive Brake Assist 2, the next generation of the world's first active brake assistant for specialized regular-service buses. Preventive Brake Assist 2 uses a combination of close-range and long-range radar sensors and a camera to respond to stationary and moving objects, including pedestrians and cyclists. The system can process multiple objects at the same time. Within system limits, detection of objects outside the roadway is improved and false warnings are minimized.

The driver assistance system warns of a collision with stationary or moving objects. In addition, it simultaneously initiates a braking maneuver with partial braking. The series of warnings and brake application have been designed precisely for use in regular service and thus to protect standing passengers. Preventive Brake Assist 2 will be available as an option from spring 2024.

The drive of the Setra MultiClass 500 LE is based on tried-and-tested and economical components. At the rear of the two-axle vehicle, the OM 936 six-cylinder in-line engine operates with a displacement of 7.7 liters. It is available with an output of 220 kW (299 hp) and 260 kW (354 hp). The three-axle MultiClass S 518 LE is fitted with the OM 470 six-cylinder in-line engine with a displacement of 10.7 liters. It has an output of 290 kW (394 hp). Depending on the model, the wide selection of transmissions includes a manual transmission, a fully automated manual transmission and converter automatic transmissions made by Voith and ZF.

The MultiClass 500 LE with the OM 936 in combination with the optional drive unit is even more economical. An electric motor between the engine and transmission operates as an alternator in overrun or braking mode and generates electricity without fuel consumption. It is stored in two storage modules on the roof. In load situations, such as when moving off, the 14 kW electric motor supports the combustion engine with this energy. It therefore consumes less fuel.

Newly developed Setra MultiClass 500 LE inter-city buses.

OMNIplus' comprehensive services are an essential component of the outstanding profitability of the new Setra MultiClass 500 LE: Classics such as the largest bus-specific service network in Europe or the tailor-made Basic, BasicPlus, Premium or Premium Regional service contracts are included. OMNIplus ExpertHandling Training especially for the Setra MultiClass 500 LE is a completely new addition to the range. With this training, professionals at the wheel become true experts.

Profitability also means digitalization in the new MultiClass 500 LE. The Bus Data Center as an interface for data transmission and a key to the digital services of OMNIplus ON, the digital services of OMNIplus, is on board as standard. OMNIplus ON Uptime pro service ensures complete transparency thanks to messages from the driver's display and increases availability. In the OMNIplus ON Portal, fleets have access to all relevant diagnostic information at any time – in real time. With OMNIplus ON monitor, fleet managers can keep an eye on their vehicle fleet. Whether Vehicle Tracker, fuel consumption or downloading driver cards and mass storage memory download – these and other data can also be provided for integration into your own systems with OMNIplus ON Data Packages.

Like the predecessor series, the new Setra MultiClass 500 LE is also manufactured in the Daimler Buses Hosdere plant near Istanbul in the European part of Turkey. The start of production for the traditional two-axle vehicle sizes with lengths of around 12 and 13 meters is planned from autumn 2023. The compact S 510 LE and the three-axle S 518 LE are expected to follow from the beginning of 2024.

March 22, 2023

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