富豪 B8L Volvo B8L

作為其中一個長期新加坡重要的巴士供應商,富豪為保持其市場佔有率,於二零一七年向新加坡提供一架B8L樣板車作營運試驗。B8L是廠方為取代B9TL的新產品,富豪B9TL先後於香港及新加坡取得不少訂單,單單是新加坡已經有過千架B9TL在路面上服務乘客。

富豪B8L除了在排放方面能夠達到歐六標準外,跟B9TL最大分別是引擎擺放方式,B9TL是沿用橫置引擎擺放方式,尾軸作為驅動軸,而B8L則採用了縱置引擎佈局,並以中軸作為驅動軸,與競爭對手亞歷山大丹尼士的Enviro500MMC相似。至於車身配置方面,供應予香港及新加坡的樣板車,都仍舊是採用Wright的出品,分別在供應給新加坡的樣板車配上新一代的Gemini 3車身,亦是全球首架配同款車身的三軸雙層巴士。

這架B8L樣板巴士於英國Wright總部完成車身裝嵌,隨即運抵新加坡,並於二零一七年十二月中登記,車牌為SG4003D,並安排到新捷運管理及營運。在投入服務之前,SG4003D於二零一八年一月底舉行的實里達車廠開放日展出供公眾參觀。這架富豪B8L於新加坡巴士史寫下數個紀錄,當中車身上的玻璃梯襯壁,是首架以至直到目前為止唯一一架採用相同設計的雙層巴士。載客量方面,富豪B8L合共可運載一百三十七名乘客,當中包括上下層座位共八十四個。另外,富豪B8L樣板車設有USB充電裝置供乘客使用。

樣板B8L最終於二零一八年四月二日開始載客行走,新捷運安排SG4003D行走往返碧山的94號線,而在投入服務後大約三個月,再被安排行走以楊厝港地鐵站作終點站的71線。值得一是SG4003D投入服務時,其玻璃梯襯壁下半部被加上黑色磨砂膠膜。在試驗期間,富豪B8L故障頻頻,表現未如理想,導致陸路交通管理局以及新捷運,都未有向富豪發出採購訂單,在訂購新雙層巴士時候,訂單仍然落在猛獅及亞歷山大丹尼士手上。二零二零年四月,就在投入服務剛好兩年之際,SG4003D完成了於新加坡的試驗期,並被退回當地富豪代理手上,替其在新加坡服務生涯寫下了一個句號。

Volvo was one of the main bus manufacturers in Singapore and to keep it market share, a B8L demonstrator was sent to Singapore for evaluation. Volvo B8L was the successor of the B9TL which made great success in both Hong Kong and Singapore market and already more than 1,000 units operated in Singapore.

Volvo B8L was powered by a longitudinally mounted Euro 6 Volvo engine and the use of the middle axle as the drive axle which contrasted with the transverse-mounted engine and rear axle as the drive axle on the B9TL. This B8L demonstrator still bodied by Wright with their Gemini 3 bodywork which was the first time fitted on 3-axle chassis.

After completion of the bodywork, it was shipped to Singapore and registered in mid. of Dec., 2017 as SG4003D and allocated to SBS Transit for operation. Before made it maiden trip, SG4003D was first shown to the public in Seletar Bus Depot Carnival in the end of Jan., 2018. It made several records in Singapore bus history. The most eye-catching was the sweeping glass panels along the full length of the staircase, SG4003D was the first and the only one buses with this design in Singapore at present. The carrying capacity of Volvo B8L was 137 passengers with 55 upper deck seatings and 29 lower decker seatings offered. To go one step further, USB charger was available to passengers.

SG4003D finally debut on route 94 linking Bishan on 2 Apr., 2018 and around 3 months later, it was changed to serve route 71 terminated at Yio Chu Kang MRT Station. During the revenue evaluation, the glass panels beneath the handrails were covered up in opaque film. The performance of SG4003D was poor as a result of frequent broke down and when purchasing new double deckers, the order went to MAN and Alexander Dennis.

SG4003D was withdrawn from service in Apr., 2020 just after two years trial and end up it service life in Singapore with returning to the dealer.

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