So today I walked up from where the soon to be slashed Beccles Town Service 82 had dropped me, and on entering Borderbus's yard a bright orange thing appeared. No not the much absent sun, but a rather impressive looking bus.
|Optare Metrodecker YJ65 EPU
The first impression when you board the Metrodecker is there is a lot of blue plastic around. An awful lot of blue plastic. The rear seating downstairs looked rather uninviting, but at the same time there was a feeling of airiness and space.
|Rear lower deck
The upper deck has been very well designed, with a curved front that is almost Borismaster like, and a large rear window giving extra light. There are 51 seats upstairs but nowhere is legroom cramped, and I found it an extremely pleasant environment. I should also add there are no huge pillars at the front obstructing views like the Streetdecks do.
|The front top deck
|And the rear
|The nearside located emergency door
|A nearside view
Exterior Appearance: 9 - Nothing wrong with it, would get a 10 with a bit more wow factor
Interior Design & Comfort: 10 - a lot of thought has gone into it, and even hard looking seatts are good.
Ride Quality: 10 - can't fault it. Smooth and comfortable in every way
Acceleration: 8 - perfect for a bus but not mind blowing
Brakes: 9 - didn't notice them which says it all.
Soundtrack: 9 - quiet and unobtrusive
Build Quality: 8 - too much plastic but no rattles!
Feel Good Factor: 9 - couldn't stop grinning, loved it..
That gives an average of 9, which I feel could be hard to beat. I'd recommend a ride on this lovely bus while it's here, and it is without doubt the best bus Optare has ever produced.
I have informed by Borderbus that the Metrodecker may be out Saturday but that is to be confirmed. However from Monday it is expected to be on the following journeys, although these are subject to change. Keep an eye on Borderbus's Twitter account.
0915 Southwold - Norwich.
1050 Norwich - Kessingland
1228 Kessingland - Norwich
1340 Norwich - Kessingland
At other times it will be on school work.
Borderbus ae also experimenting with a new electronic display for their fleet of Presidents. The first one has been fitted to 206 X652LLX and looks pretty good.
|The new display on 206
There is still no date for the delivery of the two Geminis, and as soon as I hear something I'll post it. As usual my thanks to Dave, Colin and Eric at Borderbus for inviting and letting me have a preview of the Metrodecker.