Boris Johnson has unveiled an eco-friendly double-decker bus that will go into service in Hackney next month.
This “cutting-edge” bus will be the “most environmentally friendly bus of its kind”, according to Transport for London. It is the first bus designed specifically for London’s streets in over 50 years.
A total of eight prototype buses will go into service in the first half of this year. Route 38, which launches on February 20, will run from Victoria station to Hackney.
London’s modernised double-decker includes three entrances, two staircases, new seats and an innovative use of new materials. The legacy of the famous Routemaster bus is also honoured with an open platform at the rear.
In tests, the vehicle emitted less than half of the carbon dioxide and nitrous oxide emitted by a current diesel bus. Its fuel economy was also twice as good as that of a standard diesel bus.
The new bus, which has been two years in the making, was designed by London-based Heatherwick Studio. It was engineered and built by Wrightbus in Northern Ireland and will be operated by Arriva.
A prototype was driven from City Hall before being official unveiled by the Mayor at Trafalgar Square last month.
The Mayor said: “This revolutionary new bus whose gleaming coat of red paint and sinuous curves will brighten the day of all who see it humming along our great city’s streets.
“It is the latest, greatest masterpiece of British engineering and design, and I am certain it will become a much-loved and iconic vehicle akin to the legendary Routemaster from which it draws so much inspiration.”