Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Barcelona Buses

There is no end to the variety of buses in Europe. It seems every country has several coach builders that do their own thing using commercial chassis provided by Mercedes, Volvo, MAN and others.
Spain is no exception, although several the following are visitors from other European countries:
1. Spanish coach builder Carrocerias Ayats, produces the double deck Bravo 1, usually on a Scania chassis. There is also an open top version for city tour buses.

2. Irizar is the largest Spanish builder, and second largest in Europe. This is one is on an MAN chassis.

3. Another Irizar-not sure whose chassis. I rode a Mercedes version on one trip.

4. MAN Lion's is an in house MAN coach builder. This is their small 44/49 passenger model. They also have three axle 52/55 and 52/57 passenger models. MAN also provide chassis to other coach builders.
5. Bova is based in Eindhoven, Netherlands and was taken over in 2003 by VDL. This is the Futura model, noted for its round nose when first introduced. This particular unit is fitted with curtains for long overnight hauls. They apparently build their own chassis, and often used DAF engines.
6. VDL has several lines, including BVL Bova, which produced this newer Futura model.

7. Barcelona city transit buses are MAN, and most are LNG powered. This one is promoting a Titanic exhibit- see an earlier post from Halifax. 

8. Open top tourist buses are everywhere and come in several varieties.They work three routes, and are "hop on hop off." There is a driver and a conductor and commentary is provided by tape through headsets in several languages.

9. The best bus I saw was the Red Bull Tour Bus. It apparently travels around Europe attending major sporting events and concerts and provides live entertainment using the fold up stage mounted on its roof. I hesitate to offer a pie for its identity-perhaps a highly caffeinated energy drink would be more enticing.

10. Street Scene-part 1. From left to right:
-all Barcelona taxis are black with yellow doors and trunk. All makes and models from Seats to Mercedes, Primus to mini-van, must be painted in these colour. They mount the roof light over the passenger side and display a green light for available and red for engaged.
- another open top city tour bus from a competing company (there are two)
- a car (of which there is a huge variety of Euro, Asian and American)
- a tram. These modern looking four car unit trains do street running in some areas but also have dedicated boulevards and stations on some streets such as the Diagonal, a main shopping street. 

11. Street Scene Part 2:
Another tour bus, a motorbike, which are almost as plentiful as cars, and just so you know you aren't on Mars, a UPS van. Interestingly it does display its IVECO brand name on the grille.
[Now that UPS is in the Maritimes, Mars can't be far behind.]

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