2000 Prevost Motorcoach Bus
2000 Prevost Motorcoach Entertainer Bus
The company was founded in 1924 by Eugene Prevost, a cabinet maker specializing in church pews and school furniture, who in 1924 was asked to build a custom bus body for a new REO truck chassis. Les Ateliers Prévost, as the company was then called, received several repeat orders. Between 1937 and 1939, Prévost Car's first bus manufacturing plant was built. Initially the vehicles were built around a wooden frame. In 1945 this changed, and bodies were made of metal.
Fast forward to 2000 and luxury motorcoaches were the norm for politicians, dignitaries, and first and foremost musicians! When we say, "You never know what's going to come through the door next here at the Classic Auto Mall!" we really mean it. Today was a chart topper akin to the Coca-Cola Cowboy. Yes folks, we proudly present to you a 2000 Prevost VIP H3-45 motorcoach that belonged to and was used by none other than the late Mel Tillis. Country music legend, Mel Tillis, started performing in the early 50s with a group called The Westerners (later to become the legendary Statesiders) while serving in Okinawa as a baker in the United States Air Force. In 1956, Webb Pierce recorded a song written by Mel entitled "I'm Tired", and it launched Mel's musical career. In 1976 he won the Country Music Association Awards' most coveted award, Entertainer of the Year. This is the last bus that Mel owned and was recently used by his son Mel Tillis Jr for touring.
Bathed in menacing black and sporting wispy tan decals that break up the slab-sided panels of this 46' long luxury home on wheels this coach still announces its presence well. Double stacked windshields take up over half of the flat faced front of the coach and sport quad wipers, (one wiper for each of the 4 huge glass panels), and a black fiberglass/plastic panel fills out the rest of the front. A black bumper hangs below and has fog lights integrated within for those late-night hauls from tour stop to tour stop. Tinted glass is plastered down the sides to keep the famous or infamous passengers out of the peering eyes of autograph seeking fans. A windowless rear panel brings up the tail end and has dual stacked taillights, signal markers and reverse lights on either side. The lower side sections of the coach are all storage compartments and technical areas. A Power Tech 120/240v generator sits in one compartment to provide power for lighting, air conditioners and other niceties. Another compartment contains water tanks along with water pumps. 3 axles keep the coach off the ground and sport snappy 24.5" aluminum wheels wrapped in 11R24.5 rubber with the middle axles sporting dual wheels. It's the Night Train To Memphis!
A swing of the single entrance door, a short climb up the steps and we are greeted with miles and miles of black. While the carpeting does show some fading it is very comfortable, more like that of a home than a vehicle. The driver's seat is cloth and has infinite air adjustment for a comfortable ride on those long, long drives. A black steering wheel fronts a multitude of gauges that monitor every function of the coach and if flanked on the left by a console length panel that contains switches for everything from air leveling, (side to side), interior lighting, passenger area HVAC, shifter buttons, air brakes, and a power window for the driver to use while paying those pesky tolls. The passenger area is where the full-on luxury begins. Leather seating abounds in the main area, from the forward-facing seat that looks out at the miles of blacktop to come to the lengthwise mounted sofa-like benches, even the dining table seating is leather. Wooden storage compartments are all over and a TV with VHS and DVD capabilities provides entertainment for the long haul. Lighting is abundant and a mirror on the ceiling gives the illusion of an even more roomy area. Mini blinds on each window provide more privacy from adoring fans but easily open to let the sun shine in. A small bathroom with a wash basin sits across from a refrigerator freezer combo, (may need repairs/replacement as it doesn't always keep goods cold). Further down the line are 12, count them 12 bunks for your band/crew/family to catch some much-needed rest. Each of which is equipped with an electrical outlet and small tv. In the way back is the master suite/office. More black leather and wooden cabinets are here along with another TV with a VHS & DVD player. This TV is flanked by mirrors on either side along with lighting. Sit right down, Come On And Sing...
A flip of the release in the rear and the huge engine cover opens to display a 12.7L Detroit Diesel 60 inline 6 cylinder. This is attached to an Allison 6-speed automatic transmission. The onboard air compressor is here and is belt driven by the engine. This HUGE combination is good for a minimum of 350 horsepower mixed with gobs and gobs of torque. With 672,885 miles this drivetrain is barely broken in!
Unfortunately, the coach is entirely too big to fit on our in-house lift. What we can tell you is that all 3 axles are riding on airbag suspension for that floating down the highway feel. The braking system is also pneumatic, with disc brakes to provide the WHOA power.
This was my first time driving a motor coach and let me tell you it won't be my last!!! With infinite power, easy steering and great braking, (it does take time to get used to the air brakes), the only real obstacle to overcome was being fully aware of the length of my ride. I felt like I was taking Mel and the band to their next gig in Branson, but sadly I was just driving around our test track with my cohort and partner in crime, who by the way can attest to the comfort as he took a cat nap while on our test drive.
A full-on luxury motorcoach with some great prior ownership history. You can pack up the band for your next cross-country tour or the family for a summer vacation seeing the sights of this great country all without having to sleep in motels along the way!
Classic Auto Mall is a 336,000-square foot classic and special interest automobile showroom, featuring over 600 vehicles for sale with showroom space for up to 1,000 vehicles. Also, a 400 vehicle barn find collection is on display.
This vehicle is located in our showroom in Morgantown, Pennsylvania, conveniently located just 1-hour west of Philadelphia on the I-76 Pennsylvania Turnpike. The website is www.classicautomall.com and our phone number is (888) 227-0914. Please contact us anytime for more information or to come see the vehicle in person.