• May 20, 2010
London's new Routemaster bus – Click above to watch a virtual tour after the jump

Northern Ireland's Wrightbus has officially won the contract to build London's next double-decker bus – the new Routemaster – and this is what it will look like. This rendering of the final version comes from the winning entry in the design contest, drawn up by Capoco Design. That drawing was given to Wrightbus and made ready for actual use on the streets of The City.

Although it's roughly ten feet longer than the old Routemaster, it seats two fewer people, but those 62 folks will have a better time of it getting in and out with three points of entry. Also improved are means of accessing all areas of the bus with two staircases inside, and extensive use of glass aims to keep the behemoth from appearing so behemoth-y.

Having been blessed by London Mayor Boris Johnson himself, the new Routemaster will be showing up on London roads in 2012. Follow the jump to look around it for now.

[Source: BBC]



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  • 22 Comments
      • 4 Years Ago
      If only the rims, headlights and tailights were better integrated into the design...

      I'd actually like it.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Pounds Luis, tax Pounds :)

        I kind of like it, it is definitely better than the old horrible ones we get in my country.
        • 4 Years Ago
        @Luis

        London has lots of hybrid buses that are practically silent. I almost got run over by one once because it was so quiet that I didn't notice it. The diesel buses really aren't that loud. Basically it's because the Alexander Dennis, Volvo, Scania and Mercedes-Benz buses they use in London are 10,000 times better than any American bus.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Luis: you can have steelies that look different too. And the taxdollar argument is kinda... Well, Christ, have you seen the bus? How much do you think that's going to cost to manufacture? Yeah. I didn't say anything about alloys, I'd just like to see everything but better integrated than what it's like right now.
        • 4 Years Ago
        rims? seriously? on a city bus? black steel is the only one that makes sense. its cheap and easy to maintain and take a beating. plus, if you put shiny expensive ones on there are you willing to pay for it with your tax dollars?
      • 4 Years Ago
      RED_ : That rendering of the nu-Routemaster is pretty fugly. I'll take the one they accepted, thanks!

      I wonder if we'll get some of these new ones in Dublin. If they're built in Belfast then there's a good chance. It'd be pretty cool, even if they are painted blue and yellow instead of red, or even the old racing green like the buses in Dublin used to be. Mind you, sixty-two passengers is a big drop from the 90 our current fleet of double-deckers can carry.
      • 4 Years Ago
      This is part of Boris's plans to rid London of the deadly bendy buses. Nice.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I can vouch for the danger in bendy buses causing pedestrians difficulty at junctions, etc. I know in some of the local routes close to where I live, they often have to hop the kerbs in order to just get around a corner. There's also a lot of blind people around where I live (with two homes for the blind and my former secondary school catering for blind students, as well as having a primary boarding school for the blind attached), and the dangers here are apparent.
        • 4 Years Ago
        We have bendy buses here in Dublin, too (a city of about the same vintage as London, it has to be said) and they're a scourge here as much as they are in London. They make life difficult for pedestrians, they're noisy, they shake your organs as you go over the many sleeping policemen and potholes that lie on the roads in just about every area of Dublin, they're more difficult for standing passengers to STAY STANDING on, they make you feel nauseous if you're in the rear-half, looking forward. Yes, they can carry more passengers, but in less comfort than standard single-decker or double-decker buses. The bendy buses we get in Dublin are Volvo Alexanders, so there's nothing German about them (most of them are coachbuilt in Scotland, I believe). As someone who uses public transport fairly regularly, I'd rather be rid of them. Hatred of bendy buses is NOT something that's unique to London.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Deadly buses?

        Only London seems to have problem with bendy buses, all other cities in the world are just fine. There's not a single deadly accident involving a bendy bus reported - if somebody gets slammed in the doors of a bendy bus, it's not the bus's fault.

        And excuse me, but how stupid are London bus drivers that authorities need to put "Bendy bus drivers, turn HERE" signs in some curves. And how stupid are the drivers and cyclist who don't realize that articulated vehicles turn differently.

        Bendy buses have higher capacity (149 against 90 - standing included) yet they are safer - there's only one exit on the double decker while people seated upstairs have to negotiate narrow steep staircase.

        The London Travel Watch calculated in 2008 that replacing articulated buses on just three lines will cost £12.6 million - per year - as 42 more doubledeckers will be needed. The figure will rise to £60 for all routes where operated by bendy buses.

        A bendy bus, by Mercedes, cost about £250,000. Five buses commissioned by logic-deficient Borins Johnson cost £7.5 million.

        Johnson argues that because bendy buses have more doors they support fare evasion. And they he proposes a bus with OPEN rear (hop on, hop off) platform.

        I guess the only reason for such a unsubstianted hatred is the fact that Mercedes buses are better and German.
        • 4 Years Ago
        @Kitko

        I hear what you are saying about cyclists in London, Sometimes they act like they own the roads. But I'm taking about pedestrians waiting to cross the road at a junction and a bendy bus is turning at that junction. It is dangerous, I've seen it time and time again.

        As for the hatred of the bendy bus because it's German, Well I think that's a bit far fetched. If that was the case I don't think the bus would of been brought to London at all, Also if the Mercedes bendy buses were better like you say, Quite a few of them would never of caught fire in the first place.

        I don't remember the last time I saw a doubledecker bus catch fire in London just by driving up and down on the roads.
        • 4 Years Ago
        @Adrian

        I know the streets of London, I live in London (although I'm not British).

        Bendy buses are fixture in many old European cities with "medieval" streets - Berlin, Paris, Prague, Bratislava, Budapest, Heidelberg...

        As for London, Articulated lorries (that's large trucks) regularly drive through London when necessary or when a sat nav leads them there, including on streets used by bendy buses.

        I am aware of the fire problem but that issue has been rectified. I'd rather have to escape from a burning bendy buses than from the upper deck of a double-decker.

        As for accidents - I've seen cyclists driving into the "gap" between the kerb and a bus negotiating bend only to be "surprised" by the fact that the gap got small very quickly. Again, how stupid one must be? If a driver of a car did the same to with a lorry, nobody would blame the construction of a lorry.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Bendy busses where tried in the capital area of Finland for a bit less than 2 years. That idea was scrapped fast as the 15 bendy busses tried had 13 times more accidents than others in that time period.
        • 4 Years Ago
        the issue with bendy buses isn't inherent to the buses, but rather to london and its twisty narrow congested roads, the length of the buses is also a problem. Looking forward to the new routemaster here, hurry up boris!
      • 4 Years Ago
      So I take it there are no overpasses in London?
        • 4 Years Ago
        Plenty, but all designed for the Doubledecker.
        This is not the best design by the way, but at least it's better than the bloody bendy bus
      • 4 Years Ago
      Much better than their idiotic London 2012 mascots.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Quite nice.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Not a great design at all, this would have been much better:

      http://www.thisislondon.co.uk/standard/article-23428597-here-comes-the-eco-friendly-routemaster.do

      Need to keep that similar iconic front at the very least and they didnt.
      • 4 Years Ago
      The second video over at YouTube goes a little farther into detail about the bus. Interesting stuff.

      Good to see investment into public transit. Would be nice if we got more of that over here in the US.
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