|Volvo B10TL (CDGE)|
|Bodywork||PSV International / ComfortDelGro Engineering|
|Years in operation||2005–Present|
|Transmission||Voith DIWA 863.3|
|Emission Standard||Euro II|
The Volvo B10TL, commonly known as the Volvo Super Olympian, is a rear-engined, low-floor double-decker city bus built by Volvo Buses since 1998. It is the successor to the three-axle Volvo Olympian, while the two-axle version was replaced by the Volvo B7TL. Designed for the Asia-Pacific market, the bus was highly popular in Hong Kong, with many units exported there.
SBS Transit is the sole operator of the Volvo B10TL in Singapore, with 51 units delivered between 1999 and 2002. 50 units were built with bodywork by Volgren of Australia, and one unit was bodied by PSV International and ComfortDelGro Engineering, the engineering arm of SBS Transit’s parent company, ComfortDelGro.
Design & Technical aspects:
The Volvo B10TL chassis was designed based on its predecessor, the Volvo Olympian. The front radiator was moved behind the front axle to free up space for rear components. To further lower the chassis, dropped axles were implemented; however, they also removed the passive steering function of the middle axle (which was present in the Volvo Olympian). As such, Volvo B10TLs display noticeable tyre screeching from the middle axle while navigating tight corners.
The original passive suspension system has been upgraded to an electronically-controlled semi-active suspension. A unique feature of the bus is that after turning, the suspension unit does not automatically stabilise until the bus becomes stationary. Until then, the bus will slant towards the left or right.
SBS Transit Volvo B10TL CDGE demonstrator (SBS9889U)
In 2001, Singapore Bus Services placed orders for 51 Volvo B10TL buses. The initial 50 units were built with the Volgren bodywork, but the last chassis was retained by SBS Transit (re-branded from SBS in late 2001) to be fitted with a prototype bodywork by UK firm PSV International, in partnership with ComfortDelGro Engineering, the engineering arm of SBS Transit’s parent company, ComfortDelGro.
This bus was registered on 1 Mar 2005 as SBS9889U, the last Volvo B10TL to be registered, and entered revenue service later that same month. It is also the last non-wheelchair-accessible bus to be registered in SBS Transit’s fleet, as well as the bus with the largest registration number in numerical order.
|Basic Technical Specifications|
|Engine||Volvo D10A-285 engine, 9603cc, Euro II-compliant
Power/Torque rating of 285 hp (210 kW) @ 2000 rpm / 1200 Nm @ 1450 rpm
|Transmission||Voith DIWA 863.3 gearbox, 3-speed automatic|
|Bodywork||PSV International / ComfortDelGro Engineering Bodywork
Prototype bodywork designed by SBS and PSV International
Built by PSV International and ComfortDelGro Engineering
|EDS||LECIP Electronic Display Signage (EDS)
Orange LED matrix mounted on front and side
Formerly using plastic destination sign on rear
Double-leaf entrance, double swinging plug exit
|Capacity||Licensed capacity of 121 passengers:
55 upper deck seating, 27 lower deck seating and 39 standing
SBS9889U was bodied with a prototype bodywork designed by SBS and PSV International, a UK-based company which designs passenger vehicles (including buses) and assembles them in their country of operation, using components sourced regionally. In the case of SBS9889U, parts were sourced largely around Asia with essential components from Europe. The bus was assembled in Singapore by PSV International and ComfortDelgro Engineering (the engineering branch of Comfort DelGro, SBS Transit’s parent company). Doors were supplied by Deans, rather than SMC Transit which featured on the Volgren buses.
While the bus was completed in 2003, the bus did not see revenue service until 21 March 2005, making its debut on Service 147. The design and expertise gained from the prototype bodywork were to be a platform for the later CDGE-bodied Volvo B9TLs, which would also be fully assembled in Singapore.
The bus originally bore a blue-themed interior with light blue interior body panels and blue seat covers. It was also fitted with an Electronic Display Sign (EDS) supplied by Transit Media on the for the front and kerbside, but never received a rear EDS.
The bus was refurbished in 2012 with SBS Transit’s familiar yellow and red seat covers, which are featured on plenty of buses in SBS Transit’s fleet (like the Volvo B9TL Wright, Scania K230UB and the Mercedes-Benz Citaro). That same year, the EDS was reformatted to show route details in addition to scrolling between the two end termini of a particular route.
In early 2014, the Transit Media EDS units were replaced with a LECIP EDS unit, identical to the small-font units used on the CDGE-bodied Volvo B9TLs. The rear is still not fitted with an EDS.
The Volvo B10TL has a licensed capacity of 121 passengers, with 55 upper deck seating, 27 lower deck seating, and 39 standing passengers. Despite the low-floor design, wheelchair ramps were never installed, unlike other Volvo B10TLs in Hong Kong.
The lower deck of the bus features 27 permanent seats. Being a low-floor bus, the bus offers step-free access from entry/exit doors until the last row of seats. A staircase behind the driver’s cab connects the lower and upper decks.
Like most double-deck buses in Singapore, the Volvo B10TL (CDGE) buses are configured with two doors: an entrance door at the front, and an exit door in the middle. The entrance doors are conventional inward-swinging leaf doors, while the exit doors are outward-swinging swing plug doors. They are supplied by Deans, and are pneumatically operated.
The ticket validator is located just behind the bus driver. Similar to all buses of this era, the ticket validator was retained after magnetic farecards were phased out in 2002, and used as a ticket printer for cash-paying passengers.
Opposite the staircase, there is a single front-facing priority seat, reserved for elderly and handicapped passengers, and passengers travelling with young children. They are indicated in olive green seat covers.
A standing area is located behind the staircase and opposite the exit door, taking the place of a wheelchair bay onboard many newer buses. Although the Volvo B10TL offers low-floor access, it is not equipped as a wheelchair-accessible bus and thus also does not have a wheelchair ramp.
Grab poles and hand grips are located on both sides of the aisle. All seats also have hand grips to provide commuters with additional support.
Bus stopping bell-pushes are located around the bus cabin, either mounted to stanchion poles or on the pillars in-between windows. Emergency hammers are also located on these pillars.
The seating layout at the rear is similar to the older Volvo Olympian and Dennis Trident buses, with two rows of front-facing seats followed by side-facing seats all the way till the last row, which is comprised of 5 front-facing seats. This layout was likely chosen to avoid interfering with the wheel wells of the rear axles, but Volvo B10TL buses in other regions have accommodated front- and rear-facing seats throughout the lower deck.
The upper deck of the bus is laid out in a conventional four-abreast seating, with a central aisle running the length of the bus.
There are 55 seats on the upper deck. Grab poles run the length of the aisle for commuters moving around the bus. All seats also have hand grips to provide commuters with additional support.
Bus stopping bell-pushes are located around the bus cabin, mounted to stanchion poles. Emergency hammers are also located on pillars in-between windows.
The staircase allows for passenger movement between the lower and upper decks of the bus. A seat counter (LED number display) on the lower deck displays the number of available seats on the upper deck.
The farebox, New Onboard Bus Equipment (NOBE) fare collection system and Trapeze Common Fleet Management System (CFMS) display unit are located on the left of the instrument cluster. Door controls and the handbrake lever are located on the right of the driver.