Accord Tourer and Civic Type S For Essex Ambulance
34 car Honda fleet order for Accord Tourer and Civic Type S models

The Accord Tourer makes its debut with an ambulance service this week following an order for 15 i-CTDi diesel models by Essex Ambulance Service NHS Trust.

The Accord estates will be used as Rapid Response Vehicles by the Trust’s Operational Managers and are being delivered as part of a 34 car Honda fleet deal, which also sees 18 Civic Type S 5dr petrol models ordered as paramedic response cars. With the order, Honda will become the sole supplier of all Essex Ambulance’s marked cars.

Leased through Lloyds Autolease over a four year term, the vehicles were arranged as a central supply deal from Honda’s Government & Emergency Vehicle Sales Team.

The Hondas were selected by a working group comprising operational and technical staff. The team evaluated a number of vehicles from several manufacturers (including previous main supplier Ford) before awarding Honda the contract.

Essex Ambulance selected the Civic and Accord models on the strength of their performance, reliability, passenger and load carrying ability, comfort (staff work 12 hour shifts) and provision of a dashboard layout compatible with the authority’s specialist equipment. The cars have been fully equipped with emergency lighting, communications/radio/sat nav by Woodway Engineering at Coventry, with full Battenburg livery by SupaSine Duramark.

Essex Ambulance fleet currently includes 34 marked response cars, 54 ambulances, two motorcycles (both Honda ST1300s) and a helicopter air ambulance.

Operations Manager Jon Moore, who led the assessment panel, said: "We were very impressed with the quality of the vehicles supplied by Honda. A panel of nine staff drove many hundreds of miles assessing each of the nine vehicles that we looked at.

"The staff did not know the prices involved in any of the vehicles and based their decision purely on the suitability for the job. However, we are very pleased with the financial deal that was put forward after we had picked the vehicles we wanted.

"We are confident that the staff will be very happy with the new vehicles and that they will provide us with the performance and reliability that we need to meet the needs of the people of Essex."

Honda’s Government and Emergency Vehicle sales consultant, Mark Jones, says: "This order from Essex Ambulance represents the first, front-line, fully-liveried applications of the Civic Type S VSA and Accord Tourer i-CTDi diesel models. These join an ever increasing number of other models from Honda, including petrol Accord, Stream, Jazz, CR-Vs and Civic diesel and IMA, which are in growing use by Britain’s emergency services.

"With the dual benefits of Honda reliability and diesel fuel cost savings, the Accord Tourer i-CTDi diesel in particular is generating a lot of interest as a potential response car – and right now we have a number of Police and Ambulance customers requesting demo cars to evaluate in this role," he adds.

To read our in depth road test of the Honda Accord Tourer [ click here ]

To read our in depth road test of the Honda Civic IMA [ click here ]

Published : 24/07/04 Author : Melanie Carter

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