ABC Issue 368 – OUT NOW!

IGNITION | editorial

ABC Issue 368 – OUT NOW!
Got a bus itch that needs a good scratch? Australasian Bus & Coach Issue 368 - out now!

"Good evening, viewers..."

Growing up as a young kid in the suburbs of Sydney in the early ’70s I was always riveted to the TV watching The Paul Hogan Show, and loved how he started each episode with that simple greeting before launching into some quintessentially Aussie social commentary that set the tone for the rest of the night. It was a way to command your attention as it drew you in with eager anticipation of what laughs and skits were coming your way.

It was a similar commanding of attention at the other end of Irish comedian Dave Allen’s show, who would sit lonesome in a dimly lit studio to deliver the final humorous story that would leave you, in the least, with a cheeky chuckle if not a rolling belly laugh. Loved it!

As the new managing editor of ABC – your favourite bus and coach magazine – the team and I hope to not so much command your attention but to earn it – and similarly keep you entertained and informed from start to finish with the latest bus news, trends and tech developments from both an Australasian and greater global perspective, all the while having a bit of fun and reader engagement as we collectively celebrate our amazingly welcoming, competitive, smart and friendly bus-and-transport industry.

I’m telling you now, bus people are good people, by and large. We put up with a lot of stuff and we do a great job delivering – mostly – a safe and quality transport experience for the masses each day. Pat yourselves on the back! You should be proud of that. Don’t forget it!

And for as much as it seems we are marketplace rivals – which we are – we are also, as an industry, faced with many similar challenges and changes together as we move forward into the 2020s and beyond.

I’ve been kicking around the bus and coach media world for a few years now. And as many will attest to, they say if you ever leave ‘busses’ you often find yourself ‘boomeranging’ back into it somehow. At some unforseen time. In some unexpected way. And for this I am grateful for the opportunity.

Have no doubt, in terms of raw substantiated readership numbers (ie. That means legitimate!), ABC is the market-leading bus and coach title in the region and it’s been around for nearly 30 years. So about the same age as me, really. Maybe … (give or take a decade or two).

On that note, I’d like to thank my immediate predecessors Randall Johnston and Amie Hickland, who’ve done a great job editing ABC and bringing you a quality publication to read each month for the past few years. I can only hope to continue and build upon the fine energies and efforts they have previously put in.

And I can only hope you, our loyal readers, will help me by telling me what I’m doing right or wrong. We never stop learning in life and only the foolish believe that they do so, so your input into what you want to read, see and hear about in ABC is greatly and openly appreciated. I’m merely a phone call or email away and – quite disturbingly, I must admit – I’m always up for a good chinwag and natter. I can’t help that – ‘whaddaya do’?

Change itself, though, is all around our beloved bus industry. It comes from global technical innovation, from laws and regulations affecting emissions and passenger safety, to increasing fuel efficiencies and ‘smarter’ cost savings. It also comes from our changing roles and corporate structures, and it is in this spirit that we are delighted to have Volvo Bus Australia’s new general manager on the cover.

ABC was fortunate to exclusively interview her, learn of her grand plans for the brand in the region and, just generally, find out what makes Lauren Downs tick.

Also this issue we check out a stunning Irizar i6 ‘Diamond Class’ coach run by operator Fun Over 50 in Springwood, Queensland, while also overviewing the new Mercedes-Benz Sprinter range – with a very interesting electric version garnering the lion’s share of attention at a recent launch in Germany.

Our 2018 Seating Guide showcases some beautiful styles and creations that can imbue your bus or coach with the tactile pleasure and bum comfort that discerning passengers crave, while our comprehensive Classifieds section has some really cool bus deals to be had in what undoubtedly is the No.1 Bus Sales marketplace in Australasia. Driven through our website, it’s definitely worth a look each month if you’re in the market to update or increase your operator fleet. Even if you are not, heck, have a squiz – you never know what cool stuff you might find in there!

And finally, in addition to our much-read monthly Bus Deliveries section – for which we’ll do our best to call and check the latest details for you first – we’ve introduced, towards the back, the first of a few new sections given our valued-reader feedback. It’s called Living Social – a behind-the-scenes bus industry pictorial, where you get to see what others are doing each month, or have done so in past years. So if you have any funny, retro, interesting or candid snaps when you are out and about you think might suit, please feel free to send them to

Ultimately, I’m excited about ABC and its future with you all and I can’t wait to catch up with many of the amazing people I’ve met through what is a uniquely great industry to be involved with. Sincerely. No fingers crossed or anything. ;)

And so I say again as I have so often done before: Until the next thrilling instalment ...




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