Visitors can now "experience" the Daimler test track in Stuttgart-Untertürkheim in a very comfortable and, above all, safe way with a new S 511 HD club coach. Ulrich Bastert, Head of Marketing, Sales and After Sales Daimler Buses, handed over the Setra ComfortClass 500 vehicle to Frank Deiss, Site Manager of the Mercedes-Benz plant in Untertürkheim, the district that is also home to the 8.4-hectare testing grounds.
The S 511 HD measuring 10,465 mm in length went on sale at the start of the year as the shortest model in the innovative model series. It is the successor to an S 411 HD from the Setra TopClass 400 series, which was used here as a visitor coach for over six years. Thanks to its compact vehicle dimensions, the club coach offers groups of guests a superlative experience which also includes driving on uphill and downhill sections.
The culmination of the demonstration drives, which include evasive and braking manoeuvres at various speeds, takes the form of negotiating a steep-bank curve which has a radius of 60 metres. The S 511 HD negotiates the section at a speed of 100 kilometres per hour, tilting up to 90 degrees in the process.
The design of the new demonstration bus promotes the non-profit Association Star Care e.V., an initiative of Daimler AG employees, partner companies and private individuals. Star Care supports social projects for children in the region who are ill and in need of help.
2500 visitors a year
The testing grounds in the Daimler main plant Stuttgart-Untertürkheim have been up and running since the end of the 1960s and provide an impressive experience for around 2500 visitors every year. Various route profiles are included on a total length of over 15 kilometres, which are used by the Group's test engineers for different testing programmes. All the types of road and terrain here are faithful reproductions of actual routes around the world.
Efficient and successful - the Setra ComfortClass 500
The S 511 HD is a Setra ComfortClass 500 vehicle. The Setra model series embodies the established, classic Setra attributes of innovation, comfort, economy and safety in a new style. The Setra ComfortClass 500 demonstrated outstanding energy efficiency in a spectacular record run soon after its market launch. In this highly acclaimed comparison drive, the test vehicle cut fuel consumption by 8.2 percent compared with the Euro 5 predecessor model. The 500th Setra ComfortClass 500 vehicle was delivered in Germany in the spring of 2015.
It all began with the compact S 6
Six decades lie between the S 511 HD and the presentation of the very first club coach. With a length of 6700 mm, the S 6 in the Setra 10 series was the smallest Setra coach ever built - and the world's first compact coach with a unitised body design. The coach celebrated its premiere at the Geneva Motor Show in 1955. 1172 S 6 coaches were built and sold up to 1964. In 1965, Setra presented the S 7 as the successor to the S 6. The 7670 mm long coach already sported the angular shape of the Setra 100 series that would roll off the production line two years later. 1968 saw the manoeuvrable S 80 from the 100 series go into volume production as a further development of the S 7. The 34-seater coach had a total length of 7690 mm. The shortest version of the 200 series was the S 208 H. 494 units of the 7600 mm long coach were produced between 1979 and 1983. The S 210 HD also has its firm place in the lineage of Setra club coaches. The 9340 mm long coach was the first high-decker among the compact coaches following the discontinuation of the S 208 H in 1983. The S 309 HD, which was introduced by the Setra brand in 1994, accommodated customers' wishes for the 300 series also to include a touring coach of under nine metres in length. At the same time, the vehicle also broke new ground with a composite design consisting of a steel base frame and aluminium body. The shortest variant of the Setra TopClass 400, the S 411 HD measuring 10,160 mm in length, was also firmly established among coach operators throughout Europe in the exclusive club travel segment. Following the comprehensive facelift of the Setra touring coaches in 2008, its compact length, a wheelbase of 3760 mm and an overhang of 2215 mm at the front and 2960 mm at the rear remained synonymous with superb agility.