The NovaBus LFS Articulated Buses

Text by James Bow

Following the retirement of the TTC’s Orion Ikarus articulated buses in January 2003, the TTC swore off articulated buses for the next decade. While the extra-long bendable buses did offer benefits, such as providing additional capacity at the same frequency and operating cost, the TTC was frustrated over how poorly the bendable buses fared on Toronto’s streets. Their maintenance requirements were substantially higher than conventional buses, and the TTC found that they could not hope to keep the articulated models on the road for the hoped-for 18 years.

However, as ridership increased, and the TTC found that many routes were becoming overcrowded, with frequencies so close they encouraged bunching, the commission looked at other agencies that continued to use articulated buses with some success. Finally, in 2012, the TTC placed an order for 27 articulated buses from Nova Bus Industries, to arrive late in 2013.

The LFS Artic model is the articulated version of Nova’s LFS bus (see above). The first prototype was built in 2004, using the front and back portions of older LFS models. The results were promising enough that a more refined prototype was built in 2005 and tests continued. In 2007, the first order for diesel-powered LFS Artic buses was received by the Société de transport de Montréal. Other transit agencies followed, including Halifax’s Metro Transit, Saskatoon Transit, and the WEGO Visitor Transportation System of Niagara Falls. In 2010, Connecticut Transit placed the first order for the hybrid version of the LFS Artic, the first of which arrived in 2011.

The TTC’s order of 27 vehicles was just the beginning. Early in 2013, the TTC expanded that order for another 126 units, to arrive in 2014. In May 2013, bus #9000 was photographed at Nova’s plant in Saint-Eustache, Quebec, generating excitement in the media.

Specifications for the NovaBus LFS Artic

  • Numbers: 9000-9026 (2013 batch), 9027-9152 (2014 batch)
  • Length: 62’
  • Width: 102”
  • Height: 124”
  • Wheelbase: 244” and 253”, front to rear
  • Turning radius: 44’8”
  • Engine: Cummins ISL9 EPA 2010, 8.9L, 330 hp
  • Transmission: Allison B500R, Voith D864.5, ZF 6AP1700B
  • Electric system: Volvo Bus Electronic Architecture
  • HVAC: MCC: standard (heat only), Carrier RF-353 with 05G compressor, Thermo King Athenia with X430 compressor, Thermo King LRT (2007-2010)
  • Front Axle: ZF RL 85
  • Centre Axle: ZF AVN 132
  • Rear/drive Axle: ZF AV 132
  • Brakes: All-wheel disc
  • Front and rear tires: Michelin XZU2 305-70R22.5
  • Centre tires: Continental HDU1 385-55RR22.5
  • Fuel tank capacity: 142 US gal
  • Seating: 62 passengers
  • Standees: 60 passengers

Nova LFS Articulated Bus Image Archive


References