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Allied Specialty Vehicles (ASV) formed its new Bus Division on Nov. 6, 2013 and appointed Kent Tyler, former President of Collins Bus Corp., as its President and CEO. The new ASV Bus Division consists of 11 leading industry brands, including: Collins Bus Corp., Mid Bus, Corbeil, Champion Bus, Inc., General Coach America, Inc. Goshen Coach, Inc., El Dorado National California, Inc., El Dorado National Kansas, Inc., El Dorado Mobility, Krystal, and Federal Coach. All photos by Craig Hacker/Craig Hakcer Photography
SALINA, Kansas — Adjacent to wheat fields on the edge of this central Kansas town, a manufacturer has reorganized and retooled its factory production line to propel a national limousine bus brand.
The sprawling Eldorado-National Kansas Inc. plant, at 252,000 square feet, and bus yard houses Krystal, which in the market of limo buses evokes the same type of storied cachet as names like De Beers, Rolex and Mont Blanc do in their respective product niches. Krystal, along with its equally notable companion luxury bus brand Federal Coach, based in Imlay City, Mich., are getting primed with leaner manufacturing, new enhancements, and wider marketing from its new owners, Allied Specialty Vehicles.
ASV bought the companies from Thor Industries in October 2013. It ranks as the largest producer of small to mid-size commercial and school buses in North America, with 11 brands in its Bus Division alone and with 150 distributors across the continent.
In the limousine industry, the Krystal and Federal Coach brands retain a legacy of luxury and a reputation for quality built up over decades by their previous owners. One ASV executive now describes Krystal and Federal as the “Cadillac and Buick” of the limousine bus market. ASV has rebranded the bus line Krystal as “Luxury For The Driven,” and Federal Coach as “Excellence Comes Standard.”
Leading the re-launch of Krystal and Federal Coach are a team of executives with extensive bus manufacturing experience: ASV Bus Division President & CEO Kent Tyler, formerly with Collins Bus, Krystal Bus President Jeff Montgomery, and Federal Coach President John Resnik. The trio spoke recently at the plant with LCT Magazine for this article and in a video about future plans for the two most high-end luxury commercial mini-bus lines in the chauffeured transportation industry.
LCT Video Feature: Allied Specailty Vehicles Execs Detail Brand Improvements
LCT Photo Gallery: Visit To Allied Specialty Vehicle Plant, Salina, Kansas