利蘭奧林比安 Leyland Olympian
If someone asked which bus type of British Leyland is the most successful one in HK, Olympian must be the answer. It is obvious that Olympian have a large proportion in KMB, City Bus and NWFB fleet.
The factor which made Olympian success is the front mount radiator which increase the coolant efficiency which solve the problem occur on the first generation rear-engined bus. Compared with the integral design of Leyland Titan, Olympian allowed a wide variety of body for operators to suit different need. KMB received three ECW bodied Olympians in 1981 which two of them were prototype while the remaining one is the production vehicles. All these Olympians are 10.3m long and deployed on cross-harbour route 112. Afterwards, KMB introduced four batches of 120 9.5m long Olympian and fitted with Walter Alexander R type body from 1983-85. There are at least four types of frontal design companied with different batches. In addition, the route indicator box of the first two batches Olympian is smaller than those of the last two batches. In addition, the final batch of Olympian is fitted with ventilation system.
However, due to overhaul or traffic accident, most of the original frontal panel of the Olympian (including the prototype) were replaced by the standard one. As the government amended the ordinance about the capacity of public transport, the standing of BL1-3 were reduced to 1 only. In 1995, BL25 and 41 were converted to 2+2 seating configuration and some of the seats at the lower deck were removed to provide more standee to cope with the need for serving the Tai Po internal route 71B.
KMB started to withdraw Olympian in 2000 and four Olympians (BL48-50, 53) were converted to training bus to replace those Dennis Jubilant training buses in 2000. Until Aug, 2002, those Olympian remaining in KMB mainly used as reserve for Kowloon Bay and Kwun Tong Depot together with serving on 5D, 15A and 29M. However, as fully air-conditioned service were provided on these routes, all Olympians were left KMB fleet at the end of 2002.
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