Saturday, October 27, 2007

buses brief - SBST fleet renewal

recently everyone would have observed SBS Transit's new fleet of double deck buses.

Very visible at YCK Interchange - 72 and 76 has lots of them

No, this is not the WAB model - B10TL that came before B9TL.
Recognized by its loud radiator on the right

although the common name would be WABs (Wheelchair Accessible Buses), these double decks are technically known as Volvo Olympian B9TL. The bodywork is assembled by ComfortDelgro Engineering (CDGE), which is a subsidiary of ComfortDelgro. If you're not aware, SBS Transit is part of CDG too.

the B9TL, being the latest generation of buses in SBS Transit and Singapore presents these new prominent features:

- Climatic controlled airconditioning by Denso (?)
- Fully wheelchair accessible with wheelchair ramp, zero-step entry
- Outswing "plug" doors for smooth exit
- Vogelsitze passenger seats for comfort
- improved driver's cabin in terms of seat and space

- EURO-3 emission standard
- electronic transmission; 6 speed gearbox by ZF, or 4 speed gearbox by Voith

the buses are registered in the range of SBS 7300P to 7499A, meaning a total order of 150 initially, with option of 50 more (already exercised).

SBS Transit is not stopping here! It has ordered from Scania, another whopping 500 new single deck buses, codenamed K230UB. The purchase is to primarily replace the aging single deck Mercedes MB0405s and Volvo B10M Mark IIs that are running around Singapore since 1988-1990.

Going off soon to the scrapyard - Scania N113

Many have already been scrapped - Volvo B10M Mark II

Going off soon to the scrapyard - Mercedes MB0405 (Alexander bodywork)

Going off, too - MB0405 (Duple Metsec bodywork)

for the Scania K230UB, the bodywork will be produced in Malaysia, except for the demonstrator buses that are already built by CDGE. The demonstrator buses will be out very soon, so watch out for them.

Getting ready for revenue service

K230UB's rear

some trivia, the only 2 bendy buses in SBS Transit disappeared a while ago - both were sold to Bayes Coachline Fleet in New Zealand as school buses. o.O

things are going very slowly at SMRT Buses. It's hard to understand why they have not expanded their fleet since 2004, despite increasing demand for popular services under their charge. The worst thing they have done is to close down City Shuttle Services (CSS), then transfer the really old fleet to SMRT Buses. Some people don't even know where to press the bell!

they put up a tender for 66 new buses, which will most likely be from Scania. Mercedes Benz will be preferred since their engines are robust, but these are expensive stuff. No matter which brand, these buses better come quickly.

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