- Endurance testing in extreme summer and winter conditions, even in the gravel pit
- Colorful paintwork and made-up names: No camouflage is the best camouflage
- Crossed the whole of Europe for Active Drive Assist tests
"So test, who binds himself eternally" – every German knows the quote from poet Friedrich Schiller. An eternal bond would be a little exaggerated for a touring coach, but a Setra coach is definitely suitable in any case for an intensive long-term relationship. In addition to careful development and design as well as production in Neu-Ulm, behind this lies the test department of Daimler Buses with its relentless endurance tests. Those who pass these tests can also cope with the daily touring coach routine.
Endurance testing in extreme summer and winter conditions, even in the gravel pit
Many road users have seen the touring coaches, but not everyone has consciously registered them: Recently, half a dozen test vehicles from Setra have made their way through Europe and beyond. Sometimes empty and sometimes loaded with water dummies and ballast bags instead of passengers and luggage, on board also test engineers and measuring instruments. You could have bumped into the HD and HDH models in Finland’s icy winter. Uphill and downhill and inclines on steep roads in the Sierra Nevada mountains in Spain, the highest navigable mountains in Europe for heavy vehicles. Also in the humid heat of Gibraltar, on race tracks in Europe and as part of endurance tests in Turkey, even in a dusty gravel pit: The precursors of the next generation of TopClass and ComfortClass were on the road everywhere.
Colorful paintwork and made-up names: No camouflage is the best camouflage
Not everyone was supposed to be aware of the test vehicles, promptly proving the old adage that the best camouflage is no camouflage: HD and HDH models bore only subtle camouflage decals, while others featured colorful paintwork and a decals with made-up names such as Cera, Cleo, Cyan Leyla and Lima – designations that were based on the selected colors.
Tests were carried out between about minus 40 and plus 40 degrees Celsius. They focused on innovative assistance systems and their interaction, new components, the impact of extreme humidity and also extreme topography. All of these parameters had long been simulated virtually and also intensively tested on test stands. However, the Testing department at Daimler Buses always thoroughly checks the results of these tests in practice. In the case of the next generation of Setra touring coaches, test engineers speak – as is always the case with fundamental innovations – of overall testing. True to an old soccer adage: The truth will be revealed on the playing field. For touring Setra coaches, it will be revealed on the roads of Europe and beyond.
Crossed the whole of Europe for Active Drive Assist tests
For the new Active Drive Assist 2 as a major step towards autonomous driving, for example, a Setra crossed all Western and Central European countries, from the Baltics to Scandinavia and the South, as part of an endurance test. In addition to verifying the functionality of all individual systems, the focus was also on their interaction. In addition, test engineers even simulated faults, for example by cutting individual cables or testing the behavior in the event of a system failure. Whether starting and emissions parameters, driving parameters with interventions of the electronic stability program ESP with ski box, different tires and unfavorable load, or the newly tuned front axle – test engineers put the next generation of the Setra ComfortClass and TopClass through its paces in the toughest conditions, down to the last detail. After all, what proves itself under these extreme conditions also holds up in day-to-day touring coach operation.