New Irizar i6S for William Sim & Son

Long-established Cumbrian coach operator William Sim & Son has taken delivery of a new Irizar i6S integral as it moves to bring its coach fleet to Euro VI compliance.The company undertakes a wide range of coaching tasks from its base near Holmrook, running a fleet of 18 vehicles including six full-size coaches.

Director Andrew Sim is the third generation to run the Lake District company, which he does with his brother and fellow director Peter. “This is our third new Irizar Integral in three years,” he says.

“We particularly like the DAF-ZF powertrain. We took our first modern DAF-powered coach in 2007, and have a very good relationship with local dealer Solway DAF, which also undertakes our service work and inspections. The newest generation of DAF engines also seem to have the edge on fuel over the competition.”

Sim’s 12.9m coach has 53 i6+ seats with footrests, and a centre toilet with electric hand-dryer. Other passenger amenities include aircraft-style overhead luggage lockers, a drinks machine, USB charging points, and seat-back tables with magazine holders. The coach has a Bosch Smart Series audio system and twin-monitor Actia DVD player.

Driver and guide seats are upholstered in leather, and the coach is fitted with Active and Predictive Cruise Control systems.

The driveline comprises a DAF MX-11 300 408hp diesel engine driving a ZF TraXon automated manual gearbox.

“We are on our third generation of ZF automated gearboxes,” Sim adds. “The TraXon is a big improvement over previous versions. Together with the latest DAF engine, it’s a huge advance. When I drove the new coach back up from Irizar (UK)’s premises in Worksop it was recording between 11 and 12 mpg on the hills of the M62. It never dropped below 11 mpg: that’s the best we’ve ever seen, and was on a tight engine too.That’s a huge saving over the life of the vehicle.”