NFI Group

  (Redirected from New Flyer Industries)

NFI Group Inc., is a manufacturer of transit buses and motorcoaches, based in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. The company is the largest bus manufacturer in North America, with a 43% market share of all heavy-duty transit buses and a 45% market share of all motorcoaches produced in 2018. The company employs 9,300 across 50 facilities in the United States and Canada.

NFI Group Inc.
Traded asTSXNFI
IndustryAutomotive, Manufacturing
Founded1930 (1930) (as Western Auto and Truck Body Works Ltd)
FounderJohn Coval
Area served
North America, Europe
Key people
Paul Soubry (CEO)
ProductsMotorcoaches and transit buses
RevenueUS$2.9 billion (2019)
US$172 million (2019)
US$57.7 million (2019)
Number of employees

The company currently sells vehicles under five brands: Alexander Dennis (heavy-duty transit buses, double-deck transit buses and motorcoaches), ARBOC Specialty Vehicles (cutaway buses and medium-duty transit buses), Motor Coach Industries (motorcoaches), New Flyer (heavy-duty transit buses) and Plaxton (motorcoaches for the European market). The company also operates NFI Parts, an aftermarket parts company, and Carfair Composites, a fiberglass components supplier.

The NFI Group is listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbol NFI, and is a constituent of the S&P/TSX Composite Index.

Ownership and managementEdit

1941 Western Flyer

New Flyer was founded by John Coval in 1930 as the Western Auto and Truck Body Works Ltd. Reflecting an increased focus on bus manufacturing where it used the brand name Western Flyer, it changed its name in 1948 to Western Flyer Coach.

In the 1960s, the company further focused on the urban transit bus market. In 1971, the then-financially struggling Western Flyer was sold to the Manitoba Development Corporation, an agency of the Manitoba government, and renamed Flyer Industries Limited.[1] In 1974 the opposition Progressive Convservative party of Manitoba had urged the NDP government in power to divest Flyer Industries from government ownership.[2]

On July 15, 1986, Jan den Oudsten, a descendant of the family who formed Dutch bus manufacturer Den Oudsten Bussen BV, purchased Flyer Industries from the Manitoba government, changing its name to New Flyer Industries Limited.

In March 2002, New Flyer was acquired by KPS Capital Partners, an investment company that specializes in turning around struggling businesses. Later that year Jan den Oudsten retired as CEO. He was later inducted into the American Public Transportation Association's Hall of Fame for his work at the company.

On December 15, 2003, New Flyer was purchased by private equity firms Harvest Partners and Lightyear Capital. The company's CEO, John Marinucci, called the purchase an indicator that the company's operational and financial turnaround had been accomplished. On August 19, 2005, New Flyer became a publicly traded company on the Toronto Stock Exchange.

In October 2008, New Flyer was named one of Canada's Top 100 Employers, which was announced in The Globe and Mail newspaper, and the company was featured in Maclean's newsmagazine. Later that month, New Flyer was also named one of Manitoba's Top Employers, which was announced by the Winnipeg Free Press newspaper.[3]

The company converted to a corporate structure from a trust-like structure in October 2011.

Brazilian bus manufacturer Marcopolo S.A. acquired a 19.99% stake of New Flyer on January 23, 2013 for $116 million, the maximum it could acquire without offering to buy out other shareholders.[4]

As competing manufacturer Daimler exited the North American market in 2013, New Flyer purchased the aftermarket parts business for its Orion brand of heavy-duty transit buses for $29 million.[5] Under the agreement, New Flyer acquired the Orion parts inventory, the company's accounts, license to use proprietary part designs and agreed to provide parts for customer warranty support.

On June 21, 2013, New Flyer agreed to acquire competing heavy-duty transit bus manufacturer, North American Bus Industries (NABI).[6][7] Upon completion of NABI's outstanding orders, New Flyer converted the former NABI factory in Anniston, AL into a fourth facility to produce the Xcelsior heavy-duty transit bus.

On November 10, 2015, New Flyer agreed to acquire motorcoach manufacturer Motor Coach Industries from KPS Capital Partners for US$459 million,[8] with the deal closing on December 18, 2015.[9]

On September 22, 2016, Marcopolo S.A. reduced its stake in New Flyer to 10.8%, although it remains the largest individual shareholder.[10]

On December 1, 2017, New Flyer acquired Middlebury, Indiana based small cutaway and medium duty bus manufacturer ARBOC Specialty Vehicles for US$95 million.[11]

On May 28, 2019, New Flyer purchased British bus and coach manufacturer Alexander Dennis, including their subsidiary Plaxton, for £320 million.[12]


New Flyer designed and tested North America's first low-floor bus in 1988 and delivered the first production model, called the D40LF, to the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey in 1991.[13] In 1994, New Flyer delivered the first compressed natural gas bus in North America and the world's first hydrogen fuel cell powered bus. In 1995, the company delivered the first low-floor articulated bus in North America to Strathcona County Transit.

In 2003, King County Metro in Seattle placed an order for 213 hybrid buses, the world's first large order for hybrid buses.[14]

2005 saw a restyling of New Flyer's popular low-floor coaches with new front and rear endcaps, to modernize and streamline the exterior appearance of the bus.

In May 2012, New Flyer and Alexander Dennis announced a joint venture to design and manufacture medium-duty low-floor bus (or midi bus) for the North American market. The bus, called the New Flyer MiDi was based on the design of the Alexander Dennis Enviro200. Alexander Dennis engineered and tested the bus, and it was built and marketed by New Flyer under contract.[15] During the partnership around 200 buses were delivered to 22 operators in Canada and US. In May 2017, New Flyer and Alexander Dennis announced their joint venture would end and production of the bus would transition to Alexander Dennis' new North American factory in Indiana where it is produced alongside the double-deck Enviro500 series bus.[16][17]

In June 2012 New Flyer, in a joint venture with Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, the Manitoba Government, Manitoba Hydro and Red River College, unveiled a fully electric battery-powered bus.[18]

Bus modelsEdit

New Flyer ProductsEdit

Model designationsEdit

Current New Flyer model numbers are composed of a model code, a power source code and the length of the bus. Note that not all possible combinations have been offered.

Model Length Width Introduced Notes Photo
Xcelsior[19] 35 feet (11 m)
40 feet (12 m)
60 feet (18 m)
8.6 feet (2.6 m) 2008
  • 8% weight reduction compared to previous models

Model codes produced are below:

Model Power Length
X = Xcelsior N = compressed natural gas
D = diesel
DE = diesel-electric hybrid
E = battery-electric
HE = hydrogen fuel cell
T = electric trolleybus
35 = 35 feet (11 m)
40 = 40 feet (12 m)
60 = 60 feet (18 m) articulated
Note: not all combinations have been produced

ARBOC Specialty Vehicles ProductsEdit

Cutaway ChassisEdit

Built on Ford or Chevrolet or GMC 3500 or 4500 van chassis

Model Length Notes Photo
Spirit of Freedom[20]

24 feet (7.3 m)
27 feet (8.2 m)

  • Originally known as Spirit LP[21]
Spirit of Independence[22]

21 feet (6.4 m)
23 feet (7.0 m)

Spirit of Mobility[23]

23 feet (7.0 m)
26 feet (7.9 m)
28 feet (8.5 m)


Medium DutyEdit

Model Length Notes Photo
Spirit of Liberty[24]

29 feet (8.8 m)
34 feet (10 m)

Spirit of Equess[25]

27 feet (8.2 m)
29 feet (8.8 m)
34 feet (10 m)

Spirit of America[26]

29 feet (8.8 m)
34 feet (10 m)

Trolley Replica produced in collaboration with Specialty Vehicles.[27]


Senator Doug Jones cutting the ribbon at the opening of the NFI Anniston, Alabama, facility in 2018.

Manufacturing facilitiesEdit

New Flyer operates five facilities where new transit buses are manufactured.

Of these facilities, the Winnipeg, St Cloud, and Anniston facilities have full production capability. The Crookston, MN and Pembina, ND facilities performs final assembly on buses from shells that are shipped from Winnipeg.

Specialty bus manufacturing

Parts distribution centersEdit

New Flyer operates five facilities that distribute parts to customers. Some of these parts are built by New Flyer and some are OEM parts, built by other companies. The centers are geographically spread out to offer ground delivery service within two-days to all of the US and Canada.[29] These facilities also provide parts for both Orion and NABI buses, after New Flyer purchased NABI and acquired the Orion parts business from Daimler in 2013.[30]

Bus component fabricationEdit

New Flyer operates facilities that fabricate the components used to build buses. TCB Industries is a wholly owned subsidiary that makes components for both New Flyer and other manufacturers.[31]

Service centersEdit

New Flyer service centers are typically located in regions with the company's biggest customers. For these customers, New Flyer performs final assembly, pre-delivery inspection, acceptance, and training services for new buses. The Arnprior center also offers maintenance services for any make and model, including mid-life overhauls and collision repair.[32]


  1. ^ Stauss, Ed (1988). The Bus World Encyclopedia of Buses. Woodland Hills, CA (USA): Stauss Publications. ISBN 0-9619830-0-0.
  2. ^ "Sell Bus Company, PCs Urge Gov't". Winnipeg Free Press. October 24, 1974. p. 3.
  3. ^ Yerema, Richard; Leung, Kristina. "Top Employer: NFI Group Inc".
  4. ^ The Canadian Press (January 23, 2013). "Brazilian bus maker loads up stake in New Flyer Industries". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved 2017-07-13.
  5. ^ "New Flyer buys Orion parts business of Daimler Bus". The Globe and Mail. 2013-03-01. Retrieved 2013-04-22.
  6. ^ "New Flyer confirms the successful closing of North American Bus Industries, Inc. acquisition and related financial transactions" (PDF) (Press release). New Flyer Industries. June 21, 2013. Archived from the original (PDF) on January 24, 2014. Retrieved 2017-07-13.
  7. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2013-06-26. Retrieved 2013-06-30.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  8. ^ "New Flyer buys Motor Coach Industries for $604M Cdn". CBC News. November 10, 2015. Retrieved 2017-07-13.
  9. ^ "New Flyer Industries Investor Presentation" (PDF). January 14, 2016. Retrieved August 8, 2017.[dead link]
  10. ^ Markets, CIBC World (2016-09-22). "Marcopolo Sells a Portion of Its Shares of New Flyer and Confirms Ongoing Commercial Cooperation Initiatives". GlobeNewswire News Room. Retrieved 2020-01-28.
  11. ^ "New Flyer acquires ARBOC Specialty Vehicles". New Flyer Industries. December 1, 2017. Retrieved 2018-06-03.
  12. ^ "NFI Group Inc. Announces Acquisition of Alexander Dennis Limited". Business Insider. May 28, 2019. Retrieved 2019-05-28.
  13. ^ "New Flyer - History". Retrieved 2017-08-09.
  14. ^ "New Flyer Receives Order for Up To 715 Buses From King County Metro" (Press release). New Flyer Industries Inc. May 16, 2007. Archived from the original on August 12, 2007. Retrieved 2017-07-13.
  15. ^ "Industry News: New Flyer In Bus Joint Venture". Diesel Progress. Waukesha, Wisconsin. May 10, 2012. Archived from the original on May 31, 2012.
  16. ^ "New Flyer and Alexander Dennis Agree to Transition MiDi® Bus to North American-Based Alexander Dennis Inc". New Flyer. May 10, 2017. Retrieved May 26, 2017.
  17. ^ Enviro200 joint venture terminates Buses issue 748 July 2017 page 21
  18. ^ Kusch, Larry (June 2, 2012). "New Flyer green leader". Winnipeg Free Press. Retrieved 2017-07-13.
  19. ^ "Xcelsior® - New Flyer - North America's Bus Leader". Retrieved 15 October 2018.
  20. ^ "ARBOC Spirit of Freedom". Retrieved July 29, 2020.
  21. ^ "ARBOC Spirit LP" (PDF). Retrieved July 29, 2020.
  22. ^ "ARBOC Spirit of Independence". Retrieved July 29, 2020.
  23. ^ "ARBOC Spirit of Mobility". Retrieved July 29, 2020.
  24. ^ "ARBOC Spirit of liberty". Retrieved July 29, 2020.
  25. ^ "ARBOC Spirit of Equess". Retrieved July 29, 2020.
  26. ^ "ARBOC Spirit of America Specifications" (PDF). Retrieved July 29, 2020.
  27. ^ "ARBOC Spirit of America Press Release". Retrieved July 29, 2020.
  28. ^ "New Flyer acquires ARBOC Specialty Vehicles - New Flyer - North America's Bus Leader". 1 December 2017. Retrieved 15 October 2018.
  29. ^ "New Flyer - New Flyer Parts Overview". Retrieved September 18, 2016.
  30. ^ "Aug 11, 2016 Investor Presentation" (PDF). August 11, 2016. Retrieved September 18, 2016.[permanent dead link]
  31. ^ "TCB Enterprises". Retrieved 2016-09-18.
  32. ^ "New Flyer - Service". Retrieved 2016-09-18.

Further readingEdit

External linksEdit