Sunday, November 9, 2014

SMRT Buses : MAN Lion's City Double Deck (A95) /Gemilang (SMB5888H)

After SMRT introduced their Enviro500 double deck buses on July 2014, we all thought that it's gonna be the only model that SMRT's gonna operate for a while.

Turns out it isn't gonna be the case in about 4 months time....

SMRT's Enviro500 double deck! Though it quickly became not to be the only SMRT double deck in service in 4 months time.

MAN Lion's City Double Deck meets Alexander Dennis Enviro500!
MAN meets MAN!
The MAN Lion's City Double Deck was introduced as part of a one year trial at the request of MAN - this is an excerpt of the official post by SMRT on their Facebook page.

"We confirm that SMRT Buses will put on trial one new MAN double-deck bus at the manufacturer's request. The trial will last a year. This is part of our ongoing effort to test new bus models. Our commuters have welcomed the addition of double-deckers to our growing fleet of buses to meet increased demand." -

Bodied by Gemilang, it is promoted under the MAN Lion's City branding as a complete bus. There was a prototype that was spotted with a Lion's City Double Deck design in white though the fate of that vehicle is unknown.

MAN Lion's City Double Deck!
The MAN Lion's City Double deck, supposedly in pseudo-old SMRT livery without the SMRT logo apparently painted in grey (or edited?)
As compared to the actual Lions City Double deck! Photo by Michael F. Mehnert @
The right hand drive version of the Lion's City Double Deck has subtle change in design, most notably the top of the front and rear of the bus. Most notably, the front upper deck windscreen is and the top of the rear window is curved.
Upper deck rear window being slightly curved. Though the bottom half is similar to that of its European cousin.
For those that find the front design familiar, it has design cues that were based off an earlier Gemilang bodied double deck bus that entered service with SBS Transit - SBS7777Y.

Some of the the design cues came from this bus which was also bodied by Gemilang - even some of the interior too.

An aesthetics change is at the front - instead of silver under the windscreen, it is black! Does look better as compared to the ones we've been seeing on the MAN buses.

Black under the windscreen, making the MAN front bumper stand out!
As compared with the existing MAN bus paintjob.

Originally thought to be a new Mobitec signage, it turns out to be an Aesys signge.
The front signage is by Aesys - a first for SMRT Buses.

The offside has a unique feature - though it is not visible at all from the exterior.

Spot the extra window at the staircase area.

Spot the window?

And it's the first public bus to have 3 signal indicators per side for the rear of the bus.
And finally it enters service on 190

And if the interior looks similar - it's because it is also based off the Gemilang bodied Volvo B9TL, which sees the adjustable aircon outlet making an appearance on the Lion's City double deck too.
The interior is a mix of the MAN NL323F layout, SBS7777Y style design (including the ster New City seats)
Closer look at the rear half

The upper deck is pretty similar to SBS7777Y too.
The upper deck of SBS7777Y

Similar to MAN NL323F!
The wheelchair bay has no foldable seat on the wheelchair cushion though....

The wheelchair bay, no foldable seat this time round - just a cushion.
Following the Enviro's 3 side facing seat arrangement.

Double exit!

The staircase, with a padding at the bottom of the steps to mitigate impacts if you slip and fall.
The front upper deck windscreen of the MAN Lion's City Double Deck!
The front half of the bus~
The ride is pretty comfortable and smooth, with the upper deck being very quiet. If you've rode the MAN buses in SMRT's fleet, you've pretty much rode the double deck (kind of) :P

SMRT's now also an operator of the MAN bendy, double deck and rigid - all 3 types of buses as of today! Photo from SMRT's Facebook @