McCarthy orders new short wheelbase Panther

Following the recent delivery of a 12.2m Plaxton Leopard, the first of its type, Roy McCarthy Coaches has placed an order for another industry first with a 12.2m short wheelbase Plaxton Panther which is due to go into service next spring.

This time around Roy McCarthy Coaches, based in Macclesfield, Cheshire, will pioneer the introduction of a 12.2m short wheelbase Plaxton Panther, which will go into service in the spring of next year.

“The performance of the new Leopard was so good that we simply sat down with Plaxton and said we believe there is a market opportunity for a similar-sized, short Panther,” says Andy McCarthy, managing director. “They did their homework and came back with a positive response. 

“Like us, many independent operators do a lot of business in rural areas, and in association with school contracts. We often find ourselves trying to turn vehicles in tight, restricted areas, so an improved turning circle is a big bonus. Our 12.2m Leopard has been brilliant in such circumstances and I’m sure the Panther will be the same.

“There is the added bonus that new drivers are more comfortable with shorter vehicles, which makes the learning curve a lot easier before they progress to full-length vehicles.”

The new McCarthy Panther will be on a Volvo B8 chassis with ZF automatic transmission and 49 seats, centre toilet, fridge, boiler and a radio PA system.