London-themed Citaro joins Spillmann fleet
The fleet of German operator Spillmann has appeared before in CBW’s international news pages, and the latest delivery of new Mercedes-Benz Citaros continues the trend of unusual and notable design which stands out from the norm. In line with its previous intake, the latest four hybrid buses to emerge from the company’s ‘creative workshop’ consist of three which have themed variations on a base silver livery, plus one which takes the theme to the next level. Having previously used an American school bus theme, this time the operator, based in Bietigheim-Bissingen, has chosen a London double-decker as the inspiration.
Alongside the standard features such as Side Guard Assist and a 360-degree camera system, all of the buses feature unique interiors to match the external design.
Through its design concept, the operator has now designed over 30 different themed vehicles based on the Citaro. The latest four vehicles are themed as ‘BeachBus,’ ‘Spillmann’s Diner,’ ‘SpaceBus’ and a London Routemaster. Building on previous Spillmann creations, the design ideas are now even more consistently incorporated into the exterior livery design, with the beach bus featuring a surfboard at the rear, while the diner bus features a black and white check pattern reminiscent of timeless, typical American restaurants. The space bus boasts a floating astronaut, whilst the London-inspired Citaro features an all-over red wrap, including a depiction of the rear open platform and large front grille and headlights. The sides have been designed to give the impression of an upper deck.
Head of Public Transport Sales at Daimler Buses Germany Rüdiger Kappel handed over the latest four purchases to Spillman Managing Director Bülent Menekse, who is the creative mind behind the designs, which are designed to surprise passengers and enhance the image of bus travel.
Once on board, the passenger is treated to colourful images on the side walls, and the ceilings of the Beach and Space bus are also printed with motifs. The floor coverings are also on theme; the beach bus comes with a new, turquoise-blue floor covering that looks like a swimming pool, while the diner bus features the typical 1950s diamond pattern in black and white.
Beyond the design elements, the Citaros are driven by a powerful hybrid module which mates a diesel engine with a 14kW electric motor to provide assistance when moving off. Batteries to power the motor are recharged using wasted energy when coasting or braking. Mercedes-Benz says the system reduces fuel consumption by up to 8.5%, depending on use and topography.DAIMLER BUSES The new Citaros lined up prior to delivery. DAIMLER BUSES The interiors of all of the buses are suitably themed, including this water-effect floor in the beach bus. DAIMLER BUSES