Scania OmniDekka

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Scania OmniDekka
Reading Transport bus 807 (YN54 AEY) 2004 Scania N94UD OmniDekka, Reading, 2 April 2011.jpg
Reading Transport Scania OmniDekka in Reading
Overview
Manufacturer East Lancashire Coachbuilders/Optare (based on Scania chassis)
Production 2003–2011
Body and chassis
Doors 1 or 2
Floor type Low floor
Powertrain
Capacity 68–100 seated [1]
Dimensions
Length 10.2–11.9 m
Width 2,535 mm [2]
Height 4.2–4.3 m
Chronology
Successor Optare MetroDecker

The Scania OmniDekka (bodied by East Lancashire Coachbuilders, then latterly Darwen Group and Optare), is a double-decker bus built for sale in the UK market, introduced in 2003. Originally based on Scania’s Euro 3 N94UD chassis, the body itself appears similar to East Lancs’ own Myllennium double decker range, but with re-designed front end panels provided by Scania, with a similar design to their own OmniCity and OmniLink ranges.

Scania was late in providing a low-floor double-deck vehicle, for some years prior having only offered the L94UB with a Wright Solar body to UK operators. Prior to the OmniDekka’s conception, Wrightbus had attempted to mount their Gemini double-decker body on Scania's N94UD chassis, but this was unsuccessful.

The OmniDekka in its original incarnation was commonplace all across the UK with many different operators, including many Stagecoach and FirstGroup operations, the Go-Ahead Group companies of Brighton & Hove and Metrobus, along with council-owned independents Reading Buses and Nottingham City Transport.

In November 2006, East Lancs unveiled a new double deck bodywork, the Olympus. This partially replaced the OmniDekka, which was still available but in an updated second-generation model on Scania's new N-series chassis from 2007 onwards. This new version featured slightly revised styling internally, using new parts from the Olympus body.

However, the Olympus was not quite as successful as its predecessor, although it was styled very similarly both externally and internally. In addition, around the same time, Scania's own integral OmniCity double-decker was launched into full production, and subsequently was more successful than both the Olympus and second-generation OmniDekka models, particularly in London, where nearly all operators ordered a large number of examples.

The revised OmniDekka, which was produced on the Euro 4 and later Euro 5 Scania N-series chassis initially under Darwen Group and then Optare badges (as a result of company acquisitions), failed to attract the attention of operators, enjoying just limited success, with most examples between the 07 and 61 reg years being produced for Nottingham City Transport, who were standardising their double decker fleet with this type.

In late 2011, the OmniDekka body was finally discontinued (along with the Olympus and Visionaire sister models). An impending change in Optare's business was to be the closure of the former East Lancs plant in Blackburn and all production moving to a new facility in Sherburn-in-Elmet, with non-integral vehicles on other chassis no longer being produced.

Optare subsequently began work on a new integral double decker. In 2014, this was unveiled as the MetroDecker, an all-new design based on their MetroCity single decker, with an engine by Mercedes-Benz.

Uni-link Scania N94UD OmniDekka double-decker rear in Southampton in September 2008

See also[edit]

Competitors:

Other Scania buses sold in the UK:

References[edit]