New cabriolet Postbus hits the road
Press release, 13 July 2017
After a gap of over 40 years, PostBus again has a cabriolet in its vehicle fleet. Eight metres long, the retractable-roof Postbus can seat 20 people and is fitted out like a touring coach. The cabriolet is a travelling symbol of the new partnership between PostBus and the Swiss Hiking Trail Federation which was launched today in Chur.
Covering 65,000 kilometres and 12,000 kilometres respectively, the hiking and PostBus networks reach into every corner of Switzerland with a combined length of 77,000 kilometres. Whenever anyone hears the word “hiking”, they automatically think of Postbuses, and vice versa. PostBus and the Swiss Hiking Trail Federation have now formed an official partnership and will work towards raising the profile of transport services and hiking offerings with dedicated and casual hikers alike.
A hike helps clear your mind. This fact inspired the partners to come up with the idea of a Postbus without a roof. Fresh from the factory, the cabriolet was today showcased for the media at Chur’s Postbus station to mark the launch of the new joint project. Eight metres long, the Mercedes Sprinter can carry 20 people and has features typical of a touring coach, such as a fridge for storing food. The vehicle’s livery is the familiar shade of Swiss Post yellow, complemented by the Hiking Federation’s logo, also in yellow.
Back in the 1920s, open-top Postbuses were a common sight on Switzerland’s holiday routes. The first vehicle was the Car Alpin, built by Saurer. From 1919, it carried tourists over the Simplon Pass and from Reichenau to Flims. The new bus unveiled today is the first cabriolet Postbus since 1976.
At present, the company has no definite plans to introduce any more of these vehicles, but the Canton of Graubünden promotes hiking and is therefore looking into using open-top Postbuses for conventional transport services in the coming years. The cabriolet will be used primarily for special trips in Graubünden, but groups will also be able to book its services in other regions. One item on the partnership’s programme is a hike with Swiss TV host Marco Fritsche.
PostBus sees its passenger numbers growing every year, and the company transported a total of 152 million people in 2016. Hiking is also growing in popularity, with over 2.7 million people in Switzerland taking to the great outdoors for an average of 20 three-hour hikes a year. The Swiss Hiking Trail Federation is the umbrella organization for 26 cantonal groups, and its mission is to maintain the appealing, safe and uniformly signed network of trails in Switzerland and Liechtenstein. Swiss Post is the Hiking Trail Federation’s main partner in promoting the nation’s favourite physical activity.