Scania entrusted to deliver prestigious double-decker to Hong Kong
Two of Scania's innovative three-axle double-deckers are now going on trial in demanding city-centre operation in Hong Kong. Scania and Hong Kong bus operator KMB have jointly developed the bus to suit the exceptional conditions encountered in this big city.
The bus forms part of Scania's comprehensive range of public transport vehicles, benefiting from the modular design and ready availability of service and parts. The use of EGR for convenient emission control without aftertreatment or additives spoke strongly in favour of Scania.
Three million commuters per day make KMB (Kowloon Motor Bus Company) one of the largest public transport operators in the world. With a heritage dating back to 1933, KMB puts particular focus on transport efficiency and environmental concern in all its operations, as well as on safety and comfort for drivers and passengers. Extreme traffic conditions and the strained environment in Hong Kong are decisive to KMB’s decision to go for vehicles with lower environmental impact and greater efficiency.
Scania's emission control technology featuring EGR (exhaust gas recirculation) was of particular interest to KMB, since it requires no aftertreatment or additional substances. No extra tanks need to be accommodated on-board. Emissions are taken care of through efficient combustion internally in the engine. Scania favours EGR for city operation in view of its consistent emission performance in any type of operation.
Combustion technology is based on Scania's modular engine architecture, where a common cylinder and combustion chamber is used in several engine configurations. Scania can thus concentrate its engine development on continuously optimising and refining this single cylinder shape. For operators, this secures uptime through ready availability of parts and familiarity in any workshop.
The three-axle bus is powered by Scania's 9-litre Euro 4 engine, renowned for its operating economy, durability and driver appeal. Performance is generous with a power rating of 310 hp and 1,550 Nm of torque, giving output to spare even with the air conditioning working at full steam. The engine is coupled to a 6-speed ZF automatic gearbox with integrated retarder.
In all its development work, Scania considers it vital to support the driver to make the right decisions behind the wheel. Drivers that are comfortable and in full command will do a better job. Focus areas include first-rate ergonomics, with a commanding driving position adjustable in several ways, and pendant pedals to prevent premature fatigue and muscular strain. The objective is to improve road safety, energy efficiency and comfort, which in turn will show on the bottom line for the operator.
The bus has disc brakes on all wheels to ensure ample braking power on hilly city routes. Electronic brake control improves response and saves air, which in turn makes for better fuel economy. The all-air suspension system is electronically controlled for maximum comfort and stability. The air compressor charges the system when the engine is not pulling, i.e. downhill or on the overrun, saving further on the fuel bill. The three-axle configuration, featuring a tag axle behind the drive axle, provides excellent manoeuvrability in congested city streets. The electrical system consists of a CAN-bus that is the ultimate in robustness and reliability, while offering a wealth of integrated auxiliary functions.
Distinctive styling with passenger appeal
The aluminium body, styled by Scania and built in cooperation with Caetano in UK, has typical rounded Scania styling cues that give the bus a distinctive appearance in the busy Hong Kong city environment. To further reduce weight, while maintaining a strong structure, composite panels are used where appropriate. Low weight contributes to low operating costs and increases passenger carrying capacity.
Passenger flow is promoted by the long low-floor area and interior layout, enabling passengers to move around easily inside the bus. This and the three-axle design allow a larger number of seats than in competing designs.
The climate in Hong Kong and the high passenger capacity of the bus puts extreme demands on the air conditioning system, which is driven hydraulically by a power take-off on the engine, ensuring reliable operation whatever the cooling demands. Hydraulic drive enables the compressors to operate at constant speed and noise emissions to be optimised.
Long-term presence in Asia
Scania strives to offer complete vehicles to its customers, developed in close cooperation with selected bodybuilders. This ensures that the final product is optimised for its specific task.
Scania has a strategy of building its network with patience and a long-term perspective, making sure aftermarket support is in place before sales take off at greater pace. This means that operators can always rely on the Scania network to keep their vehicles on the move.
Prior to the trials in Hong Kong the new double-decker concept has been subjected to extensive testing at Scania’s proving grounds in Södertälje, Sweden. The trials in Hong Kong will be evaluated after one year of regular service in the city.
Scania has been represented in Asia since the early 1960s and in Hong Kong since the early 1980s. Around 35,000 trucks and 5,000 buses have been sold over the years. In Hong Kong alone, some 500 Scania buses are in operation and of these, 25 are double-deckers.
For further information, please contact Hans-Åke Danielsson, Press Manager,
tel +46 8 553 856 62