Optare, one of the world’s leading bus manufacturers, has installed two new Stertil Koni, 17.5 tonne, ST 4175 heavy-duty vehicle lifts at its new North Yorkshire assembly plant. The lifts are part of a state-of-the-art equipment installation at the company’s recently-opened 140,000ft2 site at Sherburn-in-Elmet, near Leeds.
The new manufacturing facility enables Optare to produce up to 700 vehicles a year from single shift working, representing a significant increase in the capacities achieved at its former plant. When required, multiple shift working can be implemented to increase production levels and enable easy fulfilment of large volume orders.
A flexible layout was an important part of the new factory design and Stertil Koni’s four-post lifts were the ideal choice. The 17.5 tonne, ST 4175 lift is specifically designed free of crossbeams to provide unrestricted access to the underside of the vehicles and to the lift itself. It also allows the lift’s set-up width to be simply adjusted to accommodate the wide range of Optare vehicles from the 7.1m SlimLine Solo to the 12.0m Tempo. A low drive-on height of 240mm and a programmable lifting height up to 1905mm provide added versatility.
Whilst Optare specified a ten metre platform from the five different lengths on offer, Stertil Koni lifts can also be used in a tandem set-up to achieve longer platform lengths for articulated vehicles such as bendibuses.
Significantly increasing its production output has been just one of the positive outcomes of the new site for Optare. "The new factory has enabled us to considerably improve efficiency and achieve higher and more consistent quality standards," said Glenn Saint, Optare’s Chief Operating Officer. "It was important that the equipment installed in the new site helped us to meet these aims and that’s why we chose Stertil Koni for our vehicle lifts. We know we’ve cost effectively invested in quality and reliability."
Optare designs, manufactures and supplies a comprehensive range of award winning buses and coaches to operators in the UK and around the world. It is renowned for its ‘low-floor’, contemporary designs and is harnessing enhanced diesel technology to introduce low-carbon buses, including diesel electric hybrid and zero emission full electric drivelines.
Stertil Koni has a worldwide reputation as a market-leader in the design and manufacture of high-quality, ultra-reliable vehicle lifts, and installations are carried out by factory-trained, GEA-accredited technicians. Significantly, the company’s development team has recently introduced a new anti-skid finish for its complete range of commercial vehicle lifts which can also be retro-fitted to existing lifts.