AN £18 million deal to supply almost 100 public transport vehicles to Dubai has been won by Yorkshire bus manufacturer Optare.

The Sherburn-in-Elmet business, which is part of the Indian headquartered Ashok Leyland group, secured the order for 94 of its Solo buses from Dubai’s Roads and Transport Authority.

Optare president Graham Belgum, said: “The procurement of the Optare Solo is a new initiative marking the debut of this type of feeder style bus with Dubai Road Transport.”

Optare will supply 8.5 metre Solos featuring Cummins Euro 5 engines, air conditioning, with a high specification including onboard wifi and smart phone USB charging sockets.

The buses will seat up to 24 passengers with additional standing capacity and enter service in quarter one of 2019.

Mattar Al Tayer, director general and chairman of the Board of Executive Directors of Dubai Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) said: “The procurement of the new buses is part of a master plan set out to upgrade mass transit systems in Dubai and keep them aligned with the highest global practices.

“The plan also calls for providing best-in-class services to mass transit users and keeping abreast of the sustained growth of ridership of these modes.

“It conforms to RTA’s endeavour to make public transport the ideal mobility choice of people and push the share of public transport in people mobility to as much as 30 per cent by 2030.

“Achieving such objectives requires an offering of high-quality public transport options at affordable rates and with a wide geographical coverage.”

The deal has been announced in the same week as Opare announced the completion of the first stage of its largest ever Australasian export order as a New Zealand transport operator took delivery of its first batch of 114 Yorkshire-made vehicles.

Optare is supply its Metrocity buses to Tranzit Group, one of New Zealand’s largest public transport operators as part of a £21 million deal.

The first 12 of the buses will begin operation around Greater Wellington Regional Council routes in Wellington and the surrounding region in the next few weeks.

The Metrocity buses for Tranzit feature Euro 6 compliant engines, an innovative monocoque design, have a passenger capacity of up to 55 and will be the lightest with this capacity to operate in New Zealand.

Speaking about the New Zealand order Mr Belgum said: “This is a significant step for Optare in our international strategy and signals the start of the exciting growth opportunities available in Australasia.”