Vehicles

Introducing the Limo-Vans

Posted on May 1, 2001 by LCT Staff - Also by this author

Vartanian Industries, based in Broadheadsville, Pa., has established a solid reputation of producing para-transit and shuttle van lines for 20 years. Two and half years ago, Vartanian developed and started production on its limo-van line, and it hasn’t looked back since. While the Vartanian limo-van may look similar to other vans on the outside, on the inside it has the necessities and comforts suitable for all types of clients. For one client it might be the perfect “mobile office” while for another customer, it’s a fun “party van.” “The limousine operator in general needs a pretty wide scope of different types of vehicles to provide the transportation for his market base,” says Roger Vartanian, vice president of sales and marketing. Vartanian has targeted its marketing efforts for the limo-van to include hotels, assisted-living centers, and retirement communities, as well as limousine operators. Vartanian’s four limo-van models are unique with essentially the same concept. “It’s a high-end, luxury transportation vehicle, but each car has a little different spin to it,” Vartanian explains. t Six-passenger “Overall, this is our most versatile type of vehicle,” Vartanian says. This limo-van holds six, full-sized adult passengers plus all of their luggage, and is configured with six high-back, leather captains’ chairs with a center console. “It has every amenity you could want, including a coffee service, wet bar, computer port hookups, 12-volt power port hookups, cellular phone service, under-seat storage drawers, fiber-optic lighting, and accent lighting,” Vartanian says. This model is popular for those requiring a “mobile office” atmosphere.

t Seven-passenger “This is basically a people-mover where everybody faces forward,” Vartanian says. While this model doesn’t have as many of the luxurious amenities as the six passenger limo-van, it’s a comfortable shuttle that includes leather captains’ chairs.

t Eight-passenger u-van This van made its debut at the 2001 LCT Show and, as the name implies, holds eight passengers in a u-shaped seating arrangement. It has a full-length partition, fiber-optic lighting, wet bar, coffee service, surround sound, 15-inch flat screen television, dvd player, and dual-stereo systems. “It’s got everything you could need — a real party car,” Vartanian says.

t Limo-shuttles There are two limo-shuttles – one with a 12-passenger capacity and a 14- to 15-passenger capacity. “This is a high-end type of shuttle,” Vartanian says. “We’ve eliminated the vinyl seating and rubber flooring, and we’ve installed full-length carpet, accent lighting, high-back captains’ chairs made from a higher-end cloth with armrests and recliners, and the entire interior is trimmed-out just like any of our limo vans.” These limo-shuttles are geared more toward tours, and hotel and airport trips. While Vartanian reports continual, steady sales of the six, 12- and 15-passenger limo-vans, the eight-passenger hasn’t been out long enough to gauge market reaction. However, he adds that the eight passenger has been very well-received by the customers who have purchased them. In addition to the limo-van models, Vartanian Industries produces a para-transit line and a full shuttle line – essentially the same as the 12- and 15-passenger limo-shuttle. However, the full shuttle line is more industrial-based rather than luxury-focused, and is geared more toward the assisted living center segment. “These shuttles are usually wheelchair accessible and will hold anywhere from 10 to 15 passengers,” Vartanian says. The successful and popular para-transit line has been in production the longest, and the company will build in excess of 550 para-transit vehicles in one year. This model is marketed to ambulance companies, for-profit transportation companies that provide medical transportation, as well as not-for-profit organizations, such as churches and rehabilitation centers. Vartanian Industries knows the importance of advertising and marketing, especially in uncertain economic times. “Our Web site offers a 360-degree virtual reality tour of several of the vans so it gives an operator the opportunity to not only see what the vehicle looks like, but also get a feel for what it does,” Vartanian says. “We also offer a lot of different benefits with the vehicles when a customer makes a purchase.” Vartanian adds that the company will give a purchasing customer approximately 500 postcards that have photos and all the amenities of the specific vehicle that they purchase. The customer is encouraged to use the postcard as a mailer to their account base, and announce their new vehicle purchase, as well as the new transportation services they will be providing. Back in 1991, when the economy was experiencing a slight downturn, Vartanian Industries was not in the limousine business and therefore didn’t realize the potential ... for more on Vartanian, please see the May issue of LCT!

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