Volvo B10TL

Volvo B10TL
SBST Volvo B10TL
SBST Volvo B10TL
Manufacturer Volvo Buses
Bodywork Volgren CR222LD
PSV International / ComfortDelGro Engineering
Years in operation 1999 – Present
Operators SBS Transit
Technical Data
Length 12 metre
Engine Volvo D10A-285
Transmission Voith DIWA 863.3
ZF 4HP 590
ZF 5HP 590
Accessibility Low Floor
Emission Standard Euro II

The Volvo B10TL, commonly known as the Volvo Super Olympian (VSO), 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 Asian 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. These were built with bodywork by Volgren of Australia.

One additional unit was bodied with a prototype bodywork by PSV International and ComfortDelGro Engineering, a subsidiary of SBS Transit’s parent company ComfortDelGro and was registered in 2005.

Design:

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.

Technical Aspects

Volvo Super Olympians were offered with the Euro II-compliant Volvo D10A-285 engine delivering 285 horsepower, coupled with Voith and ZF gearbox options. A Euro III-compliant version (Volvo D10A-285 ECO1) was offered from Year 2000 onwards. The engine was less powerful compared to the 305-horsepower Cummins M11-305E used on the Dennis Trident 3 (which appeared on the market two years earlier), or the 335 horsepower of the later Cummins ISMe Euro III used on later batches of the Dennis Trident 3. As such, they have noticeably slower acceleration and poorer hill-climbing abilities.

The chassis was compatible with various bodywork types, such as the Alexander ALX500, Volgren CR221LD, Volgren CR223LD and the Wright Explorer. Chassis lengths of 10.6m, 11.3 and 12.0m were offered, but no orders were placed for the 11.3m version.

Initially, the Super Olympian chassis were built at Volvo’s factory in Irvine, Scotland. After the closure of the factory in mid-2000, production was moved to WrocĹ‚aw, Poland.


SBS & SBS Transit: A summary

Singapore Bus Service (SBS) took delivery of its first Volvo B10TL in 1999, registered as SBS9888Y and bodied by Volgren. A later 50 units were brought in between 2002 and 2003, when SBS had already rebranded itself to SBS Transit. These production batch buses were fitted with Volgren bodywork, and assembled locally (with the exception of one unit). Finally, the last B10TL chassis was reserved to be fitted with a prototype bodywork developed by SBS Transit in cooperation with PSV international and built by ComfortDelGro Engineering (SBS Transit’s engineering wing). It entered service in 2005 as SBS9889U, the last Volvo B10TL to be registered.

Comparison Table:

SBS Transit Volvo B10TL
Batch Volgren Demonstrator Production Batch PSV/CDGE Demonstrator
Registration SBS9888Y SBS9800A – SBS9849K SBS9889U
Quantity 1 50 1
Registration Period 1 Nov 1999 SBS9800A: 4 Apr 2002
SBS9801Y – SBS9849K:
17 Feb 2003 – 11 Apr 2003
1 Mar 2005
Bodywork Volgren CR222LD PSV International / ComfortDelGro Engineering
Technical Specifications
Engine Volvo D10A-285 (Euro II)
Displacement 8268 cc
Power/torque 285 hp (210kW) @ 2000 rpm / 1200 Nm @ 1450 rpm
Transmission Voith DIWA 863.3 (43 units)
ZF 4HP 590 (7 units)
ZF 5HP 590 Voith DIWA 863.3
Passenger Capacity Upper Deck Seated: 55
Lower Deck Seated: 28
Lower Deck Standing: 42
Total: 125
Upper Deck Seated: 55
Lower Deck Seated: 27
Lower Deck Standing: 39
Total: 121
Electronic Display Signage (EDS) LECIP
Previously: None / Transit Media (SBS9810X)
None
Previously: Mobitec Flipdot
LECIP
Previously: Transit Media
Notes Retired in 2010 Retired in 2020

 


SBS Volvo B10TL Volgren-bodied Demonstrator (SBS9888Y)

In 1999, Volvo brought in a demonstrator Volvo B10TL for Singapore Bus Services (SBS) for trial purposes. Registered on 1 November 1999 as SBS9888Y, it was the first low-floor double-decker bus to be introduced in Singapore, and a showcase for the next-generation double-deck buses to come.

Technical Specifications:
Volvo B10TL Demonstrator
Registration SBS9888Y
Engine Volvo D10A-285 (Euro II)
Transmission ZF 5HP 590 (5-speed)
Bodywork Volgren CR222LD (assembled by Soon Chow)
EDS None
Previously: Mobitec Flipdot
Additional Specifications:

Branded as “Singapore’s First Low-floor Superbus”, SBS9888Y’s chassis was assembled at Volvo’s UK plant in Irvine, Scotland, and bodied by Volgren in Dandenong, Australia, and finally shipped completely built up to Singapore. The body was a CR222LD demonstration model, arranged with 55 upper deck seats, 28 lower deck seats and standing space for 42 passengers.

The bus originally served on SBS’s flagship route Express 502, until the route was shortened due to NEL rationalisation, and re-deployed to other routes. The Mobitec Flip-dot type Electronic Display Signage (EDS) was removed in November 2005 after it was deemed unserviceable, and the bus reverted to using plastic destination signs (“destos”). However, the opaque window film around the EDS was retained, forming a black border around the front destination sign. This remained a distinguishing feature from the subsequent production batch Volvo B10TLs.

In the early hours of 7 March 2010, SBS9888Y was burnt down in a fire at Ang Mo Kio bus depot, along with five other double-decker buses. It was deregistered a year later.


SBS Volvo B10TL Volgren-bodied Production Batch (SBS9800A – SBS9849K)

Main Article: Volvo B10TL (Volgren)

After the successful trial of SBS9888Y, Singapore Bus Services placed orders for a subsequent batch of 51 Volvo B10TLs chassis in 2001. 50 of them were built with Volgren bodywork as part of the Production Batch. They were registered between 4 Apr 2002 and 11 Apr 2003 as SBS9800A – SBS9849K.

The last batch of buses (SBS9835A – SBS9849K) will be retired on 10 April 2020 after reaching its statutory lifespan of 17 years. The last day of operations was on 7 April 2020.

Technical Specifications:
Volvo B10TL
Registration SBS9800A – SBS9849K
Engine Volvo D10A-285 (Euro II)
Transmission Voith DIWA 863.3 (43 units)
ZF 4HP 590 (7 units)
Bodywork Volgren CR222LD
EDS LECIP
Previously: None / Transit Media (SBS9810X)

SBS Transit Volvo B10TL PSV / CDGE-bodied demonstrator (SBS9889U)

Main Article: Volvo B10TL (PSV / CDGE)

When SBS placed orders for a Production batch of 51 Volvo B10TLs, 50 of them were built with Volgren bodywork. The last chassis was retained by SBS Transit (re-branded from SBS in late 2001) to be fitted with a prototype bodywork by PSV International / ComfortDelGro Engineering and registered on 1 Mar 2005 as SBS9889U.

Technical Specifications:
Volvo B10TL PSV/CDGE Demonstrator
Registration SBS9889U
Engine Volvo D10A-285 (Euro II)
Transmission Voith DIWA 863.3
Bodywork PSV International / ComfortDelGro Engineering
EDS LECIP
Previously: Transit Media

 


Gallery:


Preserved Bus

SBS9844Z (VIN: YV3S1E11521050689) was preserved and shipped to Hong Kong in July 2020 after its retirement, arriving onboard vessel Hoegh St. Petersburg on 3 August 2020.


External Links & References:

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14 thoughts on “Volvo B10TL

  • 4 August 2020 at 12:16 PM
    Permalink

    SBS9817C has somehow been preserved but its whereabouts is unknown.

    Reply
    • 6 September 2020 at 12:24 PM
      Permalink

      evidence? please don’t spread fake news.

      Reply
  • 28 June 2020 at 1:47 PM
    Permalink

    I will miss you, Volvo B10TL. The last time we met was on an afternoon of 25 March 2020. Since then, didn’t see you anymore. Only to realise today that you have gone into the relics of the past. The only time we get to meet again will be in my dreams.

    Reply

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