Monday, 3 August 2015

BorderBus Trial New E200

Sometimes the bus Gods make sure timing is perfect, and today was one of those occasions. I thought it was about time I paid a visit to my mates at BorderBus now Lattitude had been and gone, so I sent a message announcing my intention to visit today and got the cryptic message back "ok, bring your camera". That, obviously got my interest roused and I spent the weekend trying to work out what it could be. I knew a few things were happening over the Summer but my bet was it was the E200 demonstrator that had been expected over Lattitude week but had to be postponed. I thought it was going to be an MMC but as it turns out those demonstrators won't be out for another 2 or 3 months.

So after catching up on everything for an hour or so, at 1330 precisely what looked like a bog standard E200 rolled into Moor Business Park.

E200 demonstrator SN15 LLA at BorderBus depot
 So the obvious question is why is it here. BorderBus have 6 perfectly good E200's and know what they are like so why the need for a demonstrator. Well the answer lies within, so to speak. This E200 is fitted with a new ZF gearbox that Alexander Dennis claim can reduce fuel consumption by 20%. That is a lot. I feel able to say there is an amount of scepticism at this claim, which is why the bus is being trialed on the 146 this week to see if the figures back up the claims.

The underneath of the new gearbox

A nice clean engine bay
In every other respect it is a bog standard E200, but of course it had to be put through its paces, so a party of us went out on a road test posing round Beccles winding up Anglian drivers waiting for their clapped out Streeetlites! Comfy seats, quiet for an E200 but the usual rattles that really shouldn't be on a bus with only 2,000 miles on the clock.

Showing off at Beccles
It will be interesting to see how the trial goes with regard to fuel economy, and Andrew Pursey has promised to let me know the results of the trial for a follow up post next week. As usual I felt almost part of the team at BorderBus today, and it is always such a pleasure to pay a visit. I'll be up there a couple more times before the schools go back as I know there will be developments to report.

In the meantime my thanks to Andrew, Dave M, Colin, Eric and Dave L for making me so welcome again, good to see you again Jamie, and special mention must go to Nicky Pursey for providing the taxi to beat all taxis to take me back to Beccles. POWER!!!!!!

The rear f the demonstrator


  1. Nice post pity I err missed you on the demo run........ZF always were a good box

  2. do you know why the bus is displaying 2 different garage plates?

    1. Well spotted! The ones in the pics from the depot were used to deliver the bus, and the ones seen in Beccles are BorderBus's own plates used while the admin work was being done.