UK bus operator Stagecoach has ordered a record number of new vehicles

Stagecoach orders 500 new buses for UK

The UK’s biggest bus operator Stagecoach will spend more than £100m on new vehicles next year, including 70 hybrid greener buses for London.

The investment, said to be a record-high for Perth-based Stagecoach, will see most of the new buses manufactured in the UK.

Overall, the group has announced orders for 568 new vehicles for 2014 and 2015.

The vehicles, to be operated in Scotland, Wales and England, will all be equipped with CCTV, while more than 350 of them will have Wi-Fi installed for free Internet access.

Seventy hybrid low-emission buses for London worth £21m are part of the deal. Since taking over the London business, Stagecoach has invested over £100m in new vehicles for the capital.

"This record investment is a major boost for UK jobs in manufacturing and many other smaller businesses in the supply chain,” said chief executive of the Stagecoach Group Martin Griffiths.

"It is also a huge vote of confidence in the future of bus and coach travel in Britain. By investing in quality and continuing to offer the best value travel of any major operator in the UK, we can help people save money, rely less on their cars and use a greener way to access work, health, education and leisure."

The orders follow an annual competitive tendering process, and the first of the new vehicles will be delivered from spring this year, the firm said.

At the end of last year, Stagecoach delivered robust performance in its bus and coach divisions, posting a 4.6 per cent hike in half-year regional bus revenues.

The move takes Stagecoach Group's total orders of new buses and coaches for its regional UK operations to around £545m in the last seven years.

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