It is fair to say that ‘Platinum upgrade’ is a bit of an outdated statement these days, since National Express Bus revealed that all new bus deliveries would now be to this specification, with part-leather seats, extra legroom, onboard visual/audio announcements and of course free Wi-Fi.
Following on from the introduction of new Platinum vehicles on to the 9 (Birmingham to Stourbridge), 50 (Birmingham to Druids Heath) and X70 (Birmingham to Chelmsley Wood) late last year and early this year, it has been revealed that another delivery of new Platinum-spec buses is shortly to begin into the West Midlands.
Though not yet publicly announced by the company, it has become common knowledge that services 82 (Birmingham to Bearwood) and 87 (Birmingham to Dudley) are to be the next beneficiaries from having brand new vehicles purchased for them.
Of course, the first two buses from this year’s delivery have already arrived at Yardley Wood garage, to ‘top-up’ their allocation of buses, as three of their Enviro200s are due to be repainted and sent up to Xplore Dundee.
But it remains to be seen where the remaining 47 new vehicles will be headed. Rumours I have heard suggest some will be going to Perry Barr garage for the 16 service (Birmingham to Hamstead).
But at this stage, rumours are all they are… more to follow!
UPDATE: Since writing this article, it has since been confirmed that the 82 and 87 are indeed receiving new Platinum buses, and the first few vehicles have been delivered, with some in service today.
I also understand that it has been confirmed today that service 16 (Birmingham to Hamstead) will also be receiving new buses in the next few weeks.