East Yorkshire has over the years purchased some very interesting vehicles, with MCV's latest double deck offering the Evoseti. Has the eastern promise arrived in Hull for the next generation of bus bodies.
The Evoseti arrived in the UK just in time for the annual Album conference held in May this year in Wexham, with other exciting vehicle options like the new NXWM E200MMC and the first demonstrator of the fully integral Wright StreetDeck with square Gemini3 body. The Evoseti certainly grabs the attention of the eye, with some simple yet stylish tones to the body shape, the addition of the EYMS livery improves the whole effect. In all honesty MCV have really looked into the design of the original double deck body, examples of which can be seen in London and Bristol, have reinvented a new shape. Which could potentially attract customers away from the standard offerings from both ADL and Wrights.
After Album the bus was sent around operators who wished to examine the new Evoseti body and the Volvo B5TL chassis, which is the Euro6 replacement for the established B9TL. By late July 2015 EYMS informed fellow enthusiasts and like minded people that the bus had arrived, now known as 793 BP15OLH. It was placed into the care of the EYMS fitters, who had the task of making 793 ready to receive its first passengers in early August. You can still access the photographs on EYMS Facebook pages, well worth a look if your interested in a few behind the scenes shots.
Your author found out that 793 was having a full days service on the X46 York-Market Weighton-Hull route during Saturday August 8th 2015. Plenty of bus enthusiasts were out and about photographing this very unique vehicle. With a day away from the usual working week, your author ventured into York not only photograph 793, but have a ride on the bus. Finding out what MCV have done with the new double decker and sample another Volvo B5TL in action.
Using one of the many Park & Ride site dotted around the outskirts of York, a bus journey into the city found many new changes to the local area, with plenty of EYMS vehicles out in service. However by simple luck the bus in question was already in York, having a break near the York Race course as I found out from the very helpful friendly driver. One has to admit that all of Peter Shipp's drivers are a credit to the standard anyone would expect from the bus industry, professional and informative, always offering assistance. Especially the drivers assigned to driving the demonstrators and several one-off purchases.
For the start of the journey on 793, your author picked up the service from Merchantgate in York, with chat and correct change for the fare and a sit on the front top deck nearside seat. 793 was placed into drive mode and off it ventured along the busy York streets as the 09:25 departure, underneath the Walmgate Bar and onto the Hull road. A standard bright grey interior greets the passenger as you board, with vivid red grab poles and a straight nine rise staircase leading to the upper saloon. For passenger comfort deep/high backed Lazzerini Parctico seats offer a nice place to sit, while the bus ambles through the less then even streets, the suspension coping very well with the odd raised manhole and shallow pothole. The Volvo B5TL with its Euro6 standard ERG and SCR emissions reduction units in place gaves a very admiral performance, with the ZF 6 speed Ecolife gearbox, which allowed the bus to reach its restricted top speed of around 44mph, with ease on the unrestricted roads. The acceleration was swift, smooth and effortless as 793 ventured towards Pocklington bus station. A view of which is illustrated by the above shot of the upper saloon front end.
While the bus was paused in Pocklington, it allowed a very pleasant chat with the driver, who found that this bus was very pleasant to drive. Your author commented about the more impressive turn of speed when compared to the recent integral StreetDeck (135 SL15ZGP). Overall the whole MCV Evoseti body was rattle free, even with the windows open on what was a very warm morning. The air cooling system was on offering cool air around the bus, but a selection of windows were open offering more of a breeze. MCV hope to offer a full TfL specification Evoseti for trials in the capital at some stage, it would be interesting comparing the air con system of both MCV and Wrights NRM. Before taking a seat in the lower saloon, a final few words on the upper saloon. There are five CCTV cameras around the upper saloon, with a recessed panel with additional LED lights on the staircase. Around twelve bell push buttons are dotted around, allowing nearly every seat within reach of a bell. The standard bus stopping sign was in the front end plastic/fiberglass surround, as full length lights for the saloon run along side the air cooling outlet grills. 45 seats are spaced out again giving ample legroom throughout the saloon.
For the remainder of the trip the lower saloon offers 30 seats, of which 17 were in the dedicated low floor area, which included 3 tip-up seats in the wheelchair/buggy zone. For this trip two families with unfolded buggies were on board, this still allowed good passenger flow for passengers alighting/boarding 793. The remaining 12 seats of the lower saloon were on raised sections, with plastic moldings for the four seat below the back to back wheel arch seats. A final row of five rear seats were placed across the back molded section leading to the rear engine powerpack. The staircase dominates the lower saloon, which if reduced in size with a square staircase could either offer more seats or another area for buggies, just after the stairs. Again there are plenty of hand grab rails with around ten bell push buttons, with a Bus Stopping sign on the staircase panel facing the saloon passengers.
At Market Weighton, your author alighted the vehicle, with a final few words to the driver, 793 made its way to Beverley then forward to Hull. Overall impressions of the MCV Evoseti were very favorable, the bus body was light and airy, with the addition of opening windows, allowing passengers the option to feel cooler air on a warm day. The EYMS Ship motif moquette seating was comfortable and pleasant to sit while on the bus. Passengers were happily chatting away about the new bus and everyday elements of life. There is also a neat luggage space over the nearside front wheel, with a newspaper rail too, which is a nice touch. Also mention should be made of an additional pole which acts as a bell push for the wheelchair passenger.
The EYMS vehicle is 10.40 meters long with a 5.40 meter wheelbase, its 4.20 meters high and standard 2.55 meters in width. With a kerbside weight of around 11.200kgs, 793 is lighter then most double deckers on the market. The 5.1 litre Volvo D5K engine is coupled to the ZF 6 speed Ecolife gearbox, which is fully automatic. Although 793 is restricted to a top speed of 50mph, other variations of the gearbox and differential offer the more speed variations. If you are in York and 793 pops up at the bus stop, I do recommend having a trip on this bus, it is different but 793 offers another choice for bus operators to experiment with. Volvo also offer the B5TL as an 11.5 meter vehicle which could seat around 83 passengers using the MCV Ecoseti body.