Volvo B11R Jonckheere

The Volvo B11R is a 10.8-litre engined coach chassis available as both two- and tri-axle from Volvo since 2011. It was introduced as the second of the Volvo BXXR series, replacing the rest of the B12B range in 2011, and later its fellow BXXR platform model, the B13R in 2013.

A version for double-decker coaches, known as B11RLE, is also produced. It was first introduced in June 2018 with Plaxton Panorama bodywork for UK and Irish markets, and was later expanded to mainland Europe in February 2020 with launch of Volvo 9700DD, a double-decker version of Volvo 9700.

As at October 2014, over 150 had been sold in the United Kingdom and Ireland. Polish operator PolskiBus purchased 20 with Plaxton Elite i bodies, while New Zealand operator ManaBus has purchased a fleet of Kiwi Bus Builders bodied B11Rs.

Design: Jonckheere

Assembly: Sweden

Years of production: 2011—

Engine: 6 cylinders; 10,800 cc

Power: 350 HP

Max speed: 115 km/h

Weight: 18,695 kg

Jonckheere was a Belgian motor coach and bus builder, founded in 1881 by Henri Jonckheere in Roeselare.

In 1881, Henri Jonckheere began to build horse-drawn carriages in the village of Beveren, near Roeselare in the province of West Flanders, Belgium. In 1902 Jonckheere build his first “luxury automobile”. In those days many, largely wooden bodies with their typical styling, were built upon several famous chassis such as Minerva and Rolls-Royce.

In 1922 Henri’s son and successor Joseph Jonckheere built his first bus body. Car bodies were still a large part of the production until the early 1930s when Jonckheere moved all of the production to bus and coach building, making Jonckheere the Belgian market leader. Jonckheere was also becoming a famous and well-known name throughout Europe.

In 1994 Jonckheere became a part of the Berkhof Group which was subsequently acquired by VDL Groep in 1998. The official name of Jonckheere was then changed to VDL Jonckheere.

A new high-specification coach was launched in Europe. The SH-series was initially available on the rear-engined Volvo B12B chassis. The demonstration model was built to a height of 3.8m. The body was also built on the Volvo B12M and Volvo B9R. Longer 14 metre versions were added to the range on the Volvo B12BT and B13R chassies. In 2010 VDL Jonckheere was subsumed by VDL Bus & Coach.

Read more: History of autobuses with Simon Bloyd ...