Stockholm, Sweden – Volvo has announced that it will launch its Volvo 9700 bus line in Canada and the U.S., the first time in more than 20 years that Volvo-brand buses will be sold in North America.

The Volvo Bus Corporation already has substantial operations in North America through its Canadian subsidiaries, Prevost and Nova Bus, but has decided to also offer motor coaches under its own name.

“Prevost offers the most luxurious coaches available in North America today,” said Tore Bäckström, senior vice president of Volvo Bus North and South America. “By launching the Volvo 9700 in the segment slightly below the Prevost coaches, we foresee good possibilities to further enhance our penetration within tour and charter, and line-haul traffic.”

Bäckström estimates that the total market in these segments is about 1,500 to 2,000 buses annually, and that the Volvo 9700 has the possibility of capturing a good share of the market within a few years, especially as many people are now leaving their cars at home and taking the bus due to gasoline prices.

The Volvo 9700 will be built in Volvo Buses’ plant in Mexico for NorthAmerican sales, with engines assembled in Hagerstown, Maryland. It will be sold through Prevost in Canada and the U.S.

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