Press Releases

MCI celebrates delivery of its 10,000th J4500 coach with longtime customer Cline Tours

With the delivery of 10 MCI J4500 coaches, Cline Tours welcomes its 300th J-Series coach and MCI celebrates its 10,000th J4500 production unit

Des Plaines, Illinois, USA – August 31, 2022: (TSX: NFI, OTC: NFYEF, TSX: NFI.DB) Motor Coach Industries (“MCI”), a subsidiary of NFI Group Inc. (“NFI”), and North America’s motor coach leader backed by reliable in-field technical expertise, 24/7 roadside assistance, and parts support, announced today the delivery of ten 2023 model year MCI J4500 coaches to Cline Tours, one of the nation’s leading operators in the Southeast, marking Cline Tours’ 300th motor coach and MCI’s 10,000th J4500 built on its production line in Winnipeg, Manitoba.

MCI tailors Cline Tour’s J-Series coaches to the company’s specifications. For its newest luxury J4500 coaches, Cline Tours selected the optional 360-degree cameras for a bird’s eye view around the coach; the RGB variable lighting package offering programable interior color options; and the optional next-generation Advanced Driver Assistance System (“ADAS”) by Bendix Wingman Fusion, providing collision mitigation, lane departure, and traffic sign recognition.

Cline Tours has been an MCI customer since 1996, when owner John McCommon acquired the Ridgeland, Mississippi-based tour and charter operator and purchased its first new MCI coach in 2004. Today, Cline Tours has a diverse fleet of 230 revenue-producing vehicles, including mini-buses, school buses, more than one hundred 45-foot MCI J4500 vehicles, and six 35-foot MCI J3500 coaches that operate from nine locations in Mississippi, Alabama, Arkansas, and Tennessee. 

“We are very pleased to celebrate production of our 10,000th J4500, a big milestone, and to do so with customer Cline Tours,” said Brent Maitland, Vice President, Private Sector Sales and Marketing. “Cline Tours’ consistent selection of MCI’s J-Series speaks to the quality of the model, the relationship between our companies, and MCI’s responsiveness in providing reliable parts service and support. We appreciate the confidence Cline Tours has in MCI and we are committed to continuing our great relationship as Cline Tours continues to grow.”

Building a reputation for safety and service excellence together

Cline Tours chooses the J-Series because of the models’ reliability and fleet uniformity between its locations, according to John McCommon, President of Cline Tours.

“If you see one Cline Tours coach, you’ve seen them all,” McCommon said. “So many of our moves require multiple coaches. It’s important to our customers: They like the same look.”

Providing a young fleet with the newest safety features is another mainstay of Cline Tour’ success. Before COVID-19, the company had a five-year fleet renewal replacement policy and it plans to get back to that as fast as it can, McCommon said. The new clean-diesel J4500 coaches are replacing the 2015 and 2016 models.

Having launched the MCI J4500 in 2001, the model has been the industry’s best-selling model since 2004. Since then, the J4500 has undergone several redesigns, including a recent interior update that provides a more spacious cabin and industry-leading legroom. MCI also introduced a 35-foot version of the J-Series featuring all the styling and performance benefits of the 45-foot J4500. In 2019, Cline Tours was among the first operators to add six MCI J3500 coaches to its fleet.

“With regards to MCI, they are a totally first-class operation,” McCommon said. “We don’t have many issues with our J coaches and if we do, MCI jumps in to fix things. They supported us through COVID, and we’ve had a lot of other factors helping us to be in a substantially much better place today.”

To celebrate the production and delivery milestones, MCI showcased its 10,000th J4500 coach at the International Motorcoach Coach Group (“IMG”) Strategic Annual Meeting on August 9 -12, 2022, in Arlington, Texas. The meeting brought together IMG’s tour and charter operator members throughout North America, including Cline Tours, for business, educational and networking sessions. IMG members are an elite group of 54 leading operators throughout North America that adhere to strict safety and operational standards to ensure the highest levels of service performance.

About MCI

MCI is North America’s public and private market motor coach leader. Products include the luxury J-Series (an industry best-seller for over a decade), the workhorse D-Series, and the brand new zero-emission luxury and commuter coaches: the battery-electric J4500 CHARGE™ and MCI D45 CRT LE CHARGE™. MCI also provides maintenance, repair, 24-hour roadside assistance, parts, and technician training through the industry’s only Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) accredited and award-winning MCI Academy.

About NFI

Leveraging 450 years of combined experience, NFI is leading the electrification of mass mobility around the world. With zero-emission buses and coaches, infrastructure, and technology, NFI meets today’s urban demands for scalable smart mobility solutions. Together, NFI is enabling more livable cities through connected, clean, and sustainable transportation.

With 7,500 team members in nine countries, NFI is a leading global bus manufacturer of mass mobility solutions under the brands New Flyer® (heavy-duty transit buses), MCI® (motor coaches), Alexander Dennis Limited (single and double-deck buses), Plaxton (motor coaches), ARBOC® (low-floor cutaway and medium-duty buses), and NFI Parts™. NFI currently offers the widest range of sustainable drive systems available, including zero-emission electric (trolley, battery, and fuel cell), natural gas, electric hybrid, and clean diesel. In total, NFI supports its installed base of over 105,000 buses and coaches around the world. NFI’s common shares trade on the Toronto Stock Exchange (“TSX”) under the symbol NFI and its convertible unsecured debentures trade on the TSX under the symbol NFI.DB. News and information is available at www.nfigroup.com, www.newflyer.com, www.mcicoach.com, www.nfi.parts, www.alexander-dennis.com, www.arbocsv.com, and www.carfaircomposites.com.

Forward-Looking Statement

This press release may contain forward-looking statements relating to expected future events and financial and operating results of NFI Group that involve risks and uncertainties. Although the forward-looking statements contained in this press release are based upon what management believes to be reasonable assumptions, investors cannot be assured that actual results will be consistent with these forward-looking statements, and the differences may be material. Actual results may differ materially from management expectations as projected in such forward-looking statements for a variety of reasons, including market and general economic conditions and economic conditions of and funding availability for customers to purchase buses and to purchase parts or services; customers may not exercise options to purchase additional buses; the ability of customers to suspend or terminate contracts for convenience; production may be delayed or production rates may be decreased as a result of the pandemic or ongoing and future supply chain disruptions and shortages of parts and components, shipping and freight delays, and disruption to labor supply; and the other risks and uncertainties discussed in the materials filed with the Canadian securities regulatory authorities and available on SEDAR at www.sedar.com.

Due to the potential impact of these factors, the NFI Group disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, unless required by applicable law.

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