Zonar’s V3 telematics control unit solution will be installed in Thomas Built's buses. Shown here is a Thomas Built Saf-T-Liner C2 CNG bus.

Zonar’s V3 telematics control unit solution will be installed in Thomas Built's buses. Shown here is a Thomas Built Saf-T-Liner C2 CNG bus.

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Thomas Built Buses is making standard the integration of Zonar’s V3 telematics control unit solution into its Saf-T-Liner HDX, Saf-T-Liner EFX, and Minotour school buses, starting with new buses ordered Nov. 14, 2016.

“We began incorporating Zonar as standard, factory-installed equipment on our Saf-T-Liner C2 a couple of years ago, and our customers are experiencing great success with the technology,” said Caley Edgerly, president and CEO of Thomas Built Buses. “We believe that telematics is the future and an invaluable tool to running a safe, efficient, and smart fleet. We are excited to now extend Zonar telematics into the rest of our product offerings.”  

On Saf-T-Liner C2 school buses, the Zonar V3 is installed directly into Thomas Built’s proprietary multiplex wiring system. This enables the system to oversee multiple chassis, body features, and components such as seat belt use, door opening and closing, wheelchair-lift activation, stop-arm operation, and parking brake engagement, among others, through Zonar’s Ground Traffic Control system. Driver behavior, such as hard braking, quick acceleration, and seat belt use, can also be monitored. The telematics system is designed to provide immediate data and can be configured and reconfigured over the air without rewiring, according to Thomas Built Buses.  

“We are excited to expand the delivery of high-definition GPS fleet tracking with real-time access to vehicle performance, subsystem, and diagnostic information capabilities to every Thomas Built bus,” said H. Kevin Mest, senior vice president of passenger services at Zonar. “Along with Thomas Built Buses, we strive to make school buses safer while streamlining the workloads of fleet managers, improving processes, and lowering the overall cost of ownership for all vehicles.”

Zonar installed on the Saf-T-Liner EFX, Saf-T-Liner HDX, and Minotour can monitor school bus location, mileage, fuel usage, driver behavior, and remote engine and system diagnostics.    

Edgerly added that the telematics system will help customers pinpoint safety and maintenance issues "before they become larger problems, and it will help them identify ways to decrease further the total cost of ownership of their fleets.”

Thomas Built customers who already have Zonar installed as standard equipment now have access to  additional levels of connectivity with some of Zonar’s other pupil transportation offerings, such as Z Pass student rider visibility software; the MyBusVue app, which tracks the bus’ current location; and 2020 and Connect Android tablets for expanded driver productivity tools.  

For more information, customers can contact their local Thomas Built Buses dealer.

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