Over the years ACTION have purchased, leased or borrowed a number of buses for evaluation purposes. This article contains information we have compiled on these buses, including technical information, fleet numbers, liveries and dates of service.
This bus was a Leyland demonstrator which operated in Canberra during April 1974.
Scania L94UB (CNG)
This bus was loaned to ACTION by Scania/Volgren Australia, arriving at Tuggeranong Depot on 29 July 2002. The bus was a Scania demonstrator painted in the Bell Street Co. (Victoria) livery. This bus now operates for Brisbane Transport (G800)
Irisbus Agora Line
This bus was evaluated from June 2003 until January 2004. It is a now a permanent member of the ACTION fleet, as Bus 310
This bus was at ACTION from March until August 1984
Leyland Lynx B60
The Leyland Lynx B60 was framed by Leyland in England and paneled and fitted out by Boltons in Perth as a demonstrator bus for Jaguar Rover Australia (JRA). The interior fit out was to Perth MTT standards and the MTT’s requirement for evaporative cooling resulted in the large roof pod being fitted. Thirty nine MTT seats were fitted.
As part of the tour around likely customers for the Lynx (replacing the National) chassis PO 2 arrived in Canberra from Perth on 28 April 1985 for evaluation. The bus was then repainted into ACTION livery, temporarily registered as ZIB-671 and entered service at Belconnen depot on 18 June. Unfortunately mechanical problems plagued the bus, notably the Hydracyclic gearbox. This Leyland gearbox was replaced at Kingston workshop by a Voith D851.2 and re-entered service on 23 August. There was a considerable improvement in the performance of the bus. The Lynx then went to the Sydney Bus Show as a Leyland exhibit at the end of August.
The Lynx was returned by ACTION to JRA on 31 October 1985.
Little interest was shown by other operators and the Lynx spent most of the next two years in storage in Melbourne. Then, in August 1987 the centre door was removed in Melbourne and the seating capacity increased from 39 to 45. The bus was then bought by Doug Lever. Its first permanent registration, MO-14 (ACT), occurred on 30 August 1987 and it was numbered 114 in the Lever fleet.
After the acquisition of the Lever bus fleet by Deane’s in 1992 the Lynx was numbered 62 and it was the first bus to carry DBL fleet names. The evaporative cooling roof pod was removed and the roof rebuilt by ACTION on 30 July 1993. A new front, below the windscreen, was built by Everlast after an accident in Kingston in August 1995 while on route 830.
The bus was donated to the Sydney Bus Museum by Deane’s in 2012.
The Renault PR100 was built in 1980 by Renault in Lyon, France, as a PR100 demonstrator for Singapore Bus Service, making its debut at Birmingham’s International Motor Show that year. It spent the next four years as a demonstrator in the UK, before being stored in Renault’s Lyon factory. In 1985 Mack Trucks Australia imported the bus, upgrading it to PR100.2 standards and making other modifications, mainly to the body, to better suit Australian standards and conditions
The bus was first at ACTION from 4th – 16th March 1985 registered as ZIB-888 but was not used on passenger services. From 17th March until July the bus was on loan to MTT Perth, with fleet number 10, before returning to ACTION as bus 672. It was renumbered to 674 on 11 February 1986, with ACTION finally purchasing the bus on the 25th of June that year.
During its time at ACTION it also displayed an AOA (all over advertisement) for the Summernats car festival, with the entire bus being painted as if it were a cadillac. It was the only PR100 in Australia, and was sold to Cavanagh’s in Kempsey in May 2000.
This bus is now in private ownership.
Mercedes Benz O.405
STA loaned this bus to ACTION for July and August 1988, and is still in service for STA as MO3158 (fleet number 3158)
Buses 730 and 731
These buses were 11.2 metres long, with a single door at the front. Seating 47, the buses were loaned to ACTION from West Midlands Travel, Birmingham. Minor modifications were made to the buses so they met with ACTION standards. The seating layout was altered to allow for a bag rack at the front of the bus, an emergency push-out window added to the rear of the bus, and driver’s cabin air-conditioning was installed. The Lynx featured a Cummins L10 engine developing 157kW (210bhp) with a 4 speed ZF Auto gearbox.
These two buses were at ACTION from May 1990 until March 1992. The livery of the bus was quite similar to Deanes. It was mostly white, with a dark blue skirt that also ran around the top of the wheels. A thin red line ran the length of the bus just under the windows. Above the window line was another red line, with a dark blue line along the top of the bus. Large stickers on the side of the bus and above the windows read “This bus is being evaluated by ACTION” and “Trial and Evaluation Test Bus”. Both buses went on to operate for Southtrans, Taren Point, as MO8499 (70) and MO8501 (72) respectively.
Seating 43 passengers, these buses were loaned to ACTION brand new, before being delivered to Metro Hobart, with driver air-conditioning and a centre door fitted. Apart from these two modifications, the bus is a standard Hobart bus, apart from having Metro’s green stripes.
This bus was the first at ACTION to feature kneeling suspension. The Scania engine develops 189kW (257bps) and is coupled to a Scania 4 speed automatic gearbox. The bus still operates for Metro, Tasmania as G00518 (193) The bus was with ACTION during 1991.
The K model has the same engine as the N model (732), except that it is mounted vertically. as opposed to horizontally. A similar gearbox is used with both chassis. Bus 733 seated 49 passengers, and was the first bus in the ACTION fleet of 12.2metres in length and was also the first to have a completely aluminium body. The bus also had kneeling suspension.
The bus had a flip-dot desto on the front. The livery was yellow on the front and sides, with a grey skirt. On the sides, at the bottom of the yellow section was an orange stripe and a blue stripe. Above the windows was white with an orange stripe over a blue stripe. A sticker on the side reads “Scania Demonstrator Bus”. The bus was with ACTION during 1991 and was last known to be at Christian’s in Bendigo. The seats were upholstered in Frontrunner fabric.
This 11.7metre bus seated 43 passengers, powered by a 177kW (240bhp) engine and a 3 speed Renk transmission. Aside from the front, rear and doors, the body of the bus is fairly similar to the Renaults.
MAN SL202 (CNG)
Similar to Bus 734, but powered by compressed natural gas.
Mercedes Benz O.405
This bus was at ACTION during 1990, and now operates as 605 BQF for Surfside Buslines. This bus had thee steps for entry and was painted in a creamy livery with orange spirals.
Scania K230UB (CNG)
This CNG bus was on loan from Scania Australia and was with ACTION from February 2010 until July 2012. The bus was built to ACTION specifications, but did not carry the ACTION livery.
Buses 710 and 711
BYD K9RA ‘Toro’
Plug in electric bus
Plug in electric bus
There were also a number of buses that ACTION borrowed from other operators, which were not part of ACTION’s fleet and therefore did not have ACT plates or an ACTION fleet number:
- Mercedes-Benz O.305 / Freighter
In 1975 this bus toured Australia as a Mercedes-Benz demonstrator. It was driven by a Perth (MTT) driver on two ACTION bus routes and used WA registration UQB-091.
- MAN 18.250 / Custom Coaches CB60
This bus was the property of MAN Australia and was at ACTION from the 8th until the 30th of June 2001. The NSW registration WSK 978 was used.
- Scania L94UB / Custom Coaches
Invicta of Lillydale, Victoria, loaned this bus to ACTION for July 2001. The bus was built new for Invicta and the Victorian registration QSG 157 was used. The bus was in the Invicta livery during its time at ACTION.
- MAN NL232-CNG / ABM CB62a
Torrens Transit from Adelaide loaned this bus, which had been built new for them. The bus was loaned to ACTION for body and chassis evaluation and whilst at ACTION used its Torrens Transit fleet number (1781) and Victorian registration (WRV 285). The bus was with ACTION for the month of September in 2002.
- Bus Australia Disposal Lists
- Thanks also to Todd Milton for his assistance in tracking down information on Buses 174 and 175.
This page was last updated on 2 December 2023