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Total Cost of Ownership

The purchase price of a bus is only the beginning. There are many other factors that affect the total cost of ownership. And when many school systems are keeping buses for up to 20 years, it's important to consider all of the associated costs before you make a purchase decision. At Thomas Built Buses, we can help you determine what factors to consider for your specific needs.

Fuel Costs

From day one, fuel efficiency begins to affect your total cost of ownership. The quality of the engines and transmissions we use keeps buses operating at efficient levels for a long time. And Thomas incorporates a variety of weight-reducing construction techniques, including the use of adhesives and welding. Your Thomas dealer can provide calculation tools to determine how you can better manage fuel costs.

Total Cost of Ownership

Operational Costs

Ease of maintenance

For fleet managers, downtime is costly. The quicker your technicians can perform routine maintenance checks, the sooner your buses are back on the road. At Thomas, we’ve designed our buses to provide easy access to the engine and fluids, so you can keep them operating in top condition. Your Thomas dealer can provide details about the money-saving advantages of each vehicle’s maintenance schedule.

Service and repairs

Your Thomas dealer is staffed with expert technicians who can help keep your buses in operation for decades. We also want to empower you to maximize the longevity of your fleet. That’s why Thomas will train your technicians to perform your warranty work. We also offer dozens of classes every year and a technology institute to keep your technicians as knowledgeable and effective as possible. And that will help you save money each and every year you own a Thomas bus.


Day-to-day fleet management is a complex task. It’s vital to have buses that start every day and complete their routes without issues. At Thomas, we use high quality components and proven construction techniques. We’ve also implemented state-of-the-art systems, like SCR emissions technology, that improve daily performance and long-term durability. Our goal is to keep your buses on the road and out of the shop.


Over the life of a bus, you certainly will need to replace some parts. In addition to providing an excellent warranty, Thomas offers a wide variety of replacement parts at competitive prices. These are parts we know and trust. Sometimes you may want to spend more, sometimes less. Thomas will advise you on the best values, so you can make the most cost-effective parts decisions.


“Mean time to failure” is a term used to quantify the quality and durability of a bus part or system. At Thomas, we are proud of the durability we build into each bus. In addition, we offer many options that allow you to make smart investments in your buses. For example, if you operate in a harsh winter climate, Thomas offers a variety of corrosion protection options. These options were developed based on input from customers. Our engineers frequently consult with schools systems across North America to get real-world ideas to lower your total cost of ownership.

Investment Costs

Your Thomas dealer can help you determine what factors most affect your total cost of ownership. Together, you can better plan the life cycle of each bus in your fleet and write more effective specs for upcoming purchases. We’ll also help create a training program for your technicians that can greatly increase the value of your staff while lowering maintenance costs. Put simply, our goal is to educate every customer. The more you know, the more cost-effective your fleet can be.

If you are planning to decrease your overall total cost of ownership by adding new buses to your fleet (thereby decreasing fuel and maintenance costs), financing is available through Daimler Truck Financial. Through tax-exempt municipal financing or competitive retail loans and leases, you can purchase new buses by making periodic payments on terms up to seven years.*

Daimler Truck Financial has a variety of finance solutions* available including:

  • Conventional retail financing at attractive and competitive rates
  • A variety of payment options to match cash flows
  • Competitive lease structures
  • Up to 100 percent financing for qualified contractors

What's your total?

To learn more about lowering your fleet’s total cost of ownership, contact your dealer.

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