The size of an articulated bus is usually 18 meters /60 ft (length). The typical rigid bus is 14 meters (35 to 45 ft). This length is the average; in some countries the articulated bus may be a bit longer. They are also known as bendy buses, slinky buses and caterpillar buses.
Specifications of Articulated Buses
An articulated bus is a single-decker bus composed of two parts held by a pivoting joint. The typical passenger capacity is 120 plus. An ordinary rigid bus can seat up to 80 or 90 maximum. Their configuration can be either the pusher or puller type. The pusher design is favored by most manufacturers.
While the size of an articulated bus puller is identical to the pusher, it has limitations. The most conspicuous is the restriction of floor levels to 750 mm (30 in) and above. This can be distracting for passengers especially if the noise level is high. However, it is cheaper to make.
Types of Articulated Buses
Among the most common articulated buses are the Mercedes Citaro (O530) models. The standard urban model is 12 meters (twin axle). Other models are the 10.5 m twin-axle (Citaro K), the 15 m tri-axle (Citaro L), 18 m articulated (Citaro G) and the 20 m four-axle articulated. There is also the 12 m twin-axle "low entry" (Citaro LE).
There are also suburban or interurban articulated bus types in the Citaro line. The sizes of articulated bus types in this category vary. The Citaro U is 12 m.
Other models are the 13 m twin-axle (Citaro MU), the 15 m tri-axle (Citaro LU), the 18 m articulated (Citaro GU), the 12 m twin-axle "low entry" (Citaro LE Ü) and the 13 m twin-axle "low entry" (Citaro LE MÜ).
The Mercedes Benz O405 came out in several versions. Their lengths range from 11.1 m 11.7 m to 12.2 m. The buses are 2.5 m wide. The bus had a Mercedes Benz OM447h engine (output was 157 kW / 210 hp or 184 kW / 250 hp).
Other engines used by the bus were the OM447h (177 kW), the OM447hII (184 kW) and the OM447hLA (184 kW). Although the size of an articulated bus is standardized, shorter versions have come out. Among them was the 10.9 m Scania OmniCity bus.
Bi-articulated buses are similar to the articulated bus except there are three cabin parts. The longest ones are in China. These bi-articulated buses are 25 meters long and made by Zhejiang Youngman. The passenger capacity of these buses is usually 200 +.
Currently there are plans by Chinese manufacturers to create double-decker bi-articulated buses. The Jumbocruisers were among the biggest buses ever built, but the design meant one could only move to the next section on the upper deck. Although production of Jumbocruisers ceased in 1992, other versions are forthcoming.
The size of an articulated bus has made it very popular in many parts of the United States, Japan and many European countries. The articulated bus is also present in Israel, Brazil, China and other countries.