Spied – Volvo’s next generation mystery city bus caught in Bangalore
As a toddler, those wheeled machinery fascinated me even before I knew what they’re called as! So here I’m, petrolhead by birth, Mechanical engineer by qualification and automotive reporter by profession!
Volvo has been offering the 8400 low floor city bus in several cities and what we see here could be the evidence of the new version/next generation version under testing.
Our ardent reader Jishnu had sent in these spy shots earlier this week. He hopped out of one bus to take photographs of a Volvo bus testing in the thick traffic of Bengaluru city.
The test mule is fully camouflaged and our extensive research suggested that there is no existing Volvo bus in the global portfolio that is a perfect visual match to the test mule. The 8400 came close, leading us to speculate that it could be the next generation version of this city bus. We have to include that this isn’t the first instance of this elusive bus coming under our radar.
The Volvo 8400 city bus is operational in several cities in India and is aimed at converting car commuters into users of public transport.
The front fascia of the bus has new headlamp clusters with the triple lamps stacked horizontally. The 8400 city bus has numerous features that set it apart from competitors like the electronically controlled air conditioning and the hydraulic control for the floor height which gives easy access to senior citizens and the physically challenged.
The city bus is powered by a rear mounted six cylinder 7.0 litre diesel engine which pumps out a healthy 290 bhp of power and 1,200 Nm of torque, coupled to a six-speed fully automatic gearbox. A 8.3 litre 6 cylinder Ecolife CNG powertrain which generates 280 bhp and 1,151 Nm, was a part of trail runs for Delhi Transport Corporation (DTC).
The air suspension ensures that the ride quality is supple and the brakes are aided by a hydraulic retarder system which is connected to the output shaft of the gearbox thereby reducing brake pad wear. The 8400 has a much longer service interval compared to its rivals making the cost of ownership affordable on the long run.
The new version of the city bus is expected to have improved efficiency and comfort level.