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Old 1st June 2016, 20:02   #3661
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Originally Posted by Grand Drive View Post
You have lots of trains for Tirunelveli to Trivandrum. You have plenty of choices if you go to Nagercoil from Tuticorin. Check SETC buses for any direct services between Tuticorin to Trivandrum.
Thanks for the reply Grand Drive. Appreciate it. I checked with TNSTC and there are no direct buses to Trivandrum. I have to take a bus to Tirunelveli and wait for a direct bus from there, else I have to take one more bus to Nagercoil and then onwards to Trivandrum from there. Oof, this sounds exhausting 😧
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Old 2nd June 2016, 19:49   #3662
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Originally Posted by rajesh1868 View Post
Thanks, booked the KSRTC Scania. Hope it is better or as good as Volvo
Question to people who have taken day journey on KSRTC AC bus - Do they provide blanket or is that only for night trips?
Generally no blankets for day trips. Its only for night trips. But, since the bus returns as a night service, the crew might be able to get you one on request.
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Old 8th June 2016, 18:38   #3663
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There is now a bus service between Delhi and Leh.

http://www.motoroids.com/news/himach...ainous-voyage/

Quoting from the news:
Quote:
Traversing more than 1100 km over a span of 38 hours, including a night halt, this bus ride will take its passengers across the arduous and mighty Himalayas, and even pass through the freezing heights of one of the highest mountain passes of the world (Taglang-la). Starting from the warm plains of Delhi, this epic bus ride will pass through 17,000+ ft high mountain passes before reaching its destination at Leh after a daunting 38 hour road trip.

Last edited by abhishek46 : 8th June 2016 at 18:39. Reason: added quote
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Old 13th June 2016, 22:18   #3664
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KPN Adyar services gone to the dogs.

Three weeks back I took the Sleeper service and found the sheets to be very dirty and the bus arriving an hour late as well.

Two weeks before, there was a beedi on my bed and at 12:30AM, we were at Vandalur and the driver was arguing with a passenger. The driver was none other than the one who drove the 'Smoky' bus I mentioned a few months back (2+1 semi sleeper service). Bus arrived a full two hours late.

This semi-sleeper service has since been discontinued, much to my delight. That was a piece of junk, long past its due date.

Since I had issues for two successive trips, I decided on taking the Volvo this time. The bus started on time but I felt that the AC wasn't really cooling the bus. I mentioned it and the driver told it might take time since it is hot outside.

By Guindy, the bus is full and everyone is sweating. Driver calls for help and after 1 hour effort, AC is fixed. We start off at 12:15 from Guindy and shortly after hitting the highways the rear passenger complain of a rackety sound. Driver tries to check but nothing comes up.

I feel that the bus has been picking up pace to make up for the time. Good thing. At 4, I hear songs. I wake up to see songs playing at a good volume and the driver singing along with it. This continued till Bangalore where I was dropped at 5:30. In short, I paid Rs.820 for a 3 hour sleep & an hour and a half of judging the driver's singing skills.

National has introduced two new buses to Chennai. I will try my hands on it next time.

This 15L run bus needs replacement urgently. I am not sure if the feedback requested post journey is having any action taken on it at all.


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Originally Posted by bblost View Post
I would be wary of using this provider.
Singing along to loud music is usually a trick used by fatigued drivers to stay awake. It does not always work.
Hit the nail on the head. He had just driven from Bangalore that afternoon. He was the only person in the bus. Not attender at all.

Didn't give us the shawl as well. Although at that point, we were just glad that the A/C was working.

Last edited by SchumiFan : 13th June 2016 at 22:26.
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Old 13th June 2016, 22:21   #3665
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I wake up to see songs playing at a good volume and the driver singing along with it.
I would be wary of using this provider.
Singing along to loud music is usually a trick used by fatigued drivers to stay away. It does not always work.
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Old 14th June 2016, 01:10   #3666
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Hello everyone This is my first post in this thread after joining team bhp two days back. NH4 Mumbai-Pune-Kolhapur-Belgaum-Bangalore is my turf and I have had umpteen Volvo/Mercedes/Scania/non ac/sleeper etc. journeys till date on this route.

Quick review on SRS SCANIA multiaxle 14.5M metrolink HD semisleeper from Belgaum to Bombay (500kms) -- a day journey.

I undertook this journey about 25 days ago. This was my 7th journey in a SCANIA ever since it was launched in India. Ticket was booked online just a night before for 900 bucks and I had chosen seat no. 29 RHS window seat. This is a 10.55pm Bangalore--Pune/Mumbai schedule bus and I have had prior good experiences with it, right from the Volvo B9R days. The said bus enters only Belgaum and Pune cities on its way and elsewhere drops/picks the pax on bypasses. As expected, on the day of my journey, the Griffin KA 01 AE 1802 arrived at SRS Ramdev office, Belgaum at 6.20a.m. This is from the previous batch of Scanias that were delivered in India. Around 10 people alighted and five of us boarded from Belgaum. Exteriors and interiors were spic and span, bus being new but even otherwise SRS maintains its buses in mint condition. Crew was in uniform and well behaved. Started off immediately at 6.25a.m and cruised on the beautiful NH4 in the speed range of 90-98 kmph. Bus was speedlocked at 100kmph and a sticker saying the same was pasted near MID. We took a first pit stop for breakfast at Neelkamal hotel on Sankeshwar bypass for 32 minutes between 6.58--7.30 a.m . Hotel was decently hygienic and I had Poha. Two VRL Volvos one a B9R sleeper and another a facelifted all new B11R gave us a company. Once journey resumed, it was pure business on NH4. Comfortably good and safe speeds were maintained with safe driving maneuvers and tackled the heavy traffic of MH well. The journey on the beautiful NH4 stretch in Maharashtra was nice and I enjoyed it as always. Pax got down at enroute cities like Kolhapur, Karad, Satara. Biobreak at Khed Shivapur toll Plaza was taken. Made it to Katraj wondercity, Pune at 12pm sharp taking old Katraj tunnel route. Bus got half empty at Wakad and still within Pune, on the bypass we stopped for lunch at a decent hotel for 20 minutes. Journey resumed and I was as usual thrilled for the upcoming Pune--Mumbai Expressway. It was enjoyable as always. Touched Panvel the entry point of Mumbai megapolis by 2.38pm and I was dropped off at Vashi, New Bombay at 2.55pm as against the scheduled 1.40pm. This delay can be attributed to newly scheduled lunch break at Pune, which has been so past an year and failure to update the timings on their website ever since the speedlock came into effect. During pre-speedlock days, it used to touch Panvel at 1.45pm, but those days it didn't take a lunch break. Thanked the crew and bid a good bye. All through the journey we had company of lot of other Volvos, March, Scanias and other buses, both, on our carriageway and the opp. side. As you might now, NH4 is the hotbed for bus activity. This route has the highest population of Volvo, Mercedes, Scania buses in the entire country. To narrow it down, Pune--Mumbai Expressway atleast is the clear winner wrt highest bus population .

I have talked at lengths elsewhere regarding the comparison between Volvo, Scania and Mercedes-Benz. In my list, Volvo stands first anyday followed by Scania and Mercedes in that order. The facelifted Volvo B9Rs and facelifted B11Rs are even better. I am not that a huge fan of Scania for its dull looks, very poor AC cooling effect and ill-designed AC vents. On the comfort, leg room, smoothness of the ride and sundry , all three exotics are equally good. I would however place Mercedes-Benz as unparalleled winner when it comes to seating arrangement. They are the only ones who gave some thought to really comfortable seating pattern in my honest opinion. The window side handrest can be folded which gives additional space (not in Volvo or Scania) , the footrest is adjustable over a certain range unlike the fixed ones in a Volvo or Scania. Most importantly, smart Germans have placed the charging point at such a comfortable position right across the thighs. It's just so cumbersome to reach the charging points in a Volvo or Scania that are located near the floor.

Both Scania and facelifted Volvos are equally supersilent inside the coach. This time, my seat in the Scania was near the rear engine, as opposed to usual first row seats and the experience was just about the same as a Volvo, when it came to levels of engine sound being audible inside. So, both are equally good at sound insulation and vibration dampening , while the Mercedes gets a bit noisy. By the way, I love the engine sound of Volvo, the Scania was not impressive.

Ratings:-

Crew-5/5
Stoppages-5/5
Driving-4 /5
Amenities - TV, two movies played ; charging point was ON all through the journey ; didn't use blankets

Safety emergency provisions -- 3/5 I will never give a full rating here for either Volvo, Scania or Merc until they come up with a full sized emergency exit forgoing two seats for easy access.

Overall-4/5.

Thanks for reading.

Some pics taken at the breakfast point. Clash of the 14.5M multiaxles !! 410hp Scania vs 370hp Volvo B11R
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Old 30th June 2016, 14:26   #3667
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Any recommendations on Bangalore-Trichy sleeper buses? Have my family with kids travelling. Was initially exploring KPN, but chanced upon many negative reviews. Any other options?
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Old 3rd July 2016, 14:40   #3668
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Review: Kerala RTC - Aalapuzha-Bangalore (Scania A/C multi-axle)

Had the opportunity to try out the Kerala RTC Scania bus service from Aalapuzha to Bangalore. I had to board the bus at Thrissur. Did the reservation through their online reservation system, which seems to be an exact copy of the one used by Karnataka RTC. Later I realised that the software vendor for the two is one and the same . At around 1600Hrs, I got an SMS that the bus has departed from its starting point and the crew's mobile # was shared.

The bus was to reach Thrissur at 2000Hrs, but even after 15mins there was no sign of the bus. I had read else where that the crew of Ke.SRTC are hesitant to pick up the phone and give meaningful responses. So I went to the enquiry counter. The chap sitting there was friendly, but he said that they don't have any system to know the position of a bus. They make announcements (of the platform # etc.) after seeing the bus actually come in. So I tried calling the crew on the cell phone. To my surprise the call was answered, and the bus was at Angamali. It was by around 2130Hrs the bus actually pulled into the bus stand.

In another 15mins we departed. I found the driving style quite easy going, and not focused on overspeeding. But Scania seems to have a "leg space" problem. I am 5 ft 11in, and if the person sitting ahead of me decides to push back his seat to the full extent, then my case is pretty much done. My trip towards KL was in a private bus service's Scania and there too I faced the same problem. So it is not some thing unique to Ke.SRTC. One major issue was that the bus crew did not provide any blankets, and it was getting a bit too cooler in the bus. Luckily after crossing Sulthan Bathery at around 0230Hrs they turned down the A/C a bit. Sulthan Bathery was the "crew change" point, and so we had around 20-25 break out there. "Kilo 6" of the Kerala Police was there at the bus stand as that seems to be the only place which had a tea shop running at that time.

The Muthanga-Gundlupet road is generally closed between 2100Hrs to 0600Hrs, and I was a bit worried on how the bus would go through. Waiting at the check post is going to be pretty irritating and it would also upset my plans. But looks like this bus had a special permit, as all check posts were promptly opened up for the bus. Other vehicles were all waiting on the side, when the Ke.SRTC bus moved on. By around 0500Hrs we were at Mysore. And by around 0830Hrs we were at the Mysore Road bus station.

To sum it up, my experience was on the positive side. The rates any way are much lower than the private service providers and the staff was also professional. One thing I was a bit worried on was the boorish attitude of the heavily unionised Ke.SRTC staff. Around a month back, the passengers of this very same service had a harrowing experience. At Sulthan Bathery the crew had to be changed, and this bus did not have the replacement crew ready. Scania trained drivers based out of that depot was posted some where else. The driver who brought the bus till Sulthan Bathery had refused to drive any further. Ke.SRTC has a crew-link system which is loosely based on the Indian Railways system. 6 hours at the wheel+2 hour break/stop = 8 hours, and that makes it one duty turn. Passengers how ever were left stranded. And after seeing the night-life at Thrissur & Kozhikode Ke.SRTC bus stations, one thing I had to admit was that it was only Ke.SRTC who was providing a good bus service in the night. All the private bus operators were off the roads by 2130Hrs. Then for long distance commute in Kerala, Ke.SRTC is the only option available.
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Old 4th July 2016, 09:08   #3669
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Short review on Trichur-Kasargod by KeSRTC Scania

Unavailability of trains and eagerness to try the new scania "Garuda maharaja" of our KeSRTC made me book in this bus on second sunday of june. Bus was the 14:30 Trivandrum-Manipal via Kottayam,Trichur,Kannur, Mangalore. While booking, noticed that only 15 seats were booked, that too for a second sunday night.
Expected arrival in Trichur was 9pm but bus arrived at 9:45pm. Driver parked the bus in side the cramped Trichur stand,like a pro. My seat was seat 15, 3rd row window RHS.
There were 2 drivers and a conductor. Bus was half filled. With 2 more people booked from Trichur, they didn't make any attempt to fill passengers but started immediately.
Blankets were kept folded in the luggage tray above each seat. Conductor just verified my sms and pointed that blankets were in tray and left. Seats were comfortable, still had plastic covers on. Leg space was less compared to KeSRTC,KaSRTC Volvo b9r (my height 5'10 ). A new malayalam movie (original CD) was played. 2 screens were open too.
Driving was very rash/private bus style which forced many cars and incoming vehicles off the road. The suspension and excellent retarders ensured that people could sleep peacefully irrespective of the F1 type driving.
Reached Calicut 12:15, Kannur 2:30 and Kasargod 4:40. As work was going in the Mahe bridge section, had to take few narrow village roads. The driver was excellent in handling scania and all through the journey, he was talking about tips to handle the beast compared to normal buses.
Guided the crew to go in Kasargod bus stand (got free tea in return by conductor who paid my bill as no change was there )
Overall a good value for money trip for Rs.450 (KaSRTC volvo for same route : 720, SRS Scania : 900, Kallada B9R : 800)
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Old 5th July 2016, 19:20   #3670
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Any recommendations on Bangalore-Trichy sleeper buses? Have my family with kids travelling. Was initially exploring KPN, but chanced upon many negative reviews. Any other options?
There is a new service called Greenline Travels. I saw the bus over the last few days in Trichy and it looked good and clean.

KSRTC also has an AC sleeper service and a Volvo on this sector.

On a different note , I took an SETC Ultra Deluxe from Trichy to Chennai early this morning. This was on route 794 from Trivandrum to Chennai via Trichy.

The bus was quite neat and the journey was done in approx. 6hrs 25 mins which is good, considering "locking" of the diesel pump which consequently plays havoc with the power delivery of the engine.

Last edited by vigsom : 5th July 2016 at 19:24. Reason: addition
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Old 5th July 2016, 22:53   #3671
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Any recommendations on Bangalore-Trichy sleeper buses? Have my family with kids travelling. Was initially exploring KPN, but chanced upon many negative reviews. Any other options?
I took the SRM Sleeper from Kumbakonam a month ago. The bus was a bit old but was prompt on arriving to the destination. I think it comes via Thanjavur/Trichy. You may try that.

It arrived at the said time in Bangalore as well. Wasn't driven rash or anything. Of course this was my only trip with them but found SRM to be generally reliable.
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Old 5th July 2016, 23:39   #3672
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I took the SRM Sleeper from Kumbakonam a month ago. The bus was a bit old but was prompt on arriving to the destination. I think it comes via Thanjavur/Trichy. You may try that.
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There is a new service called Greenline Travels. I saw the bus over the last few days in Trichy and it looked good and clean. KSRTC also has an AC sleeper service and a Volvo on this sector.
Thank you gentlemen. I had booked the KaSRTC AC Sleeper in the meantime, given its reputation from Bangalore-Bombay runs and its boarding location in Bangalore.

Let's see how it goes.
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Old 6th July 2016, 07:31   #3673
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Volvo stands first anyday followed by Scania and Mercedes in that order. The facelifted Volvo B9Rs and facelifted B11Rs are even better.

the Mercedes gets a bit noisy
I will go with the Volvo any day ; and I agree with your "noisy" experience with the Mercedes.

I have used Mercedes and Man buses on the Abu Dhabi - Ruwais sector and found Man several leagues ahead in passenger comfort ( including NVH).
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Old 6th July 2016, 11:23   #3674
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Any clue why CPC buses went out of business in the profitable Kundapura/Udupi/Mangalore to Bangalore sector? They were quite popular till the late 90s (when I was studying at Manipal), and used to get filled up first, before the likes of Durgamba, Sugama et al. They used to have an A/C service Mangalore to Mumbai departing Mangalore in the morning hours, which used to be quite popular. I travelled in their morning A/C service from Bengaluru to Mangalore around late 1993, and it was a good ride, with a lunch halt at Hotel Asshok Hassan. Lunch was included in the ticket price.
I too have done my graduation from Manipal. Those days, all the long distance buses started their journey in front of the Syndicate Bank headquarters. Their departure was like a ceremony - with all the lights flashing. There were small lights right across the body of the bus.

If I remember correctly there was CPC, Seagull, East West.

I once did a A/c bus journey from Manipal to Mumbai
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Old 6th July 2016, 15:06   #3675
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Review of Ghatge Patil Mercedes Benz SuperHighDeck 15 mtrs multiaxle from Pune to Kolhapur - 230 kms

It was from quite sometime that I was keen on checking out this new hot ''Three Pointed Star'' German beauty. The Mercedes AMG inspired front grille and a huge ''Three pointed star'' sticker sitting on the side profiles of the bus has captivated me ever since the refreshed design of Mercedes Benz was launched in India about an year ago. An opportunity struck last night and I travelled in the all new Mercedes Benz SHD from Pune ( Mitramandal Chowk ) to Kolhapur ( bus stand ). This bus belonged to Mohan Travels of Ghatge Patil Transports Group (GPT) based at Kolhapur, Maharashtra. GPT is a big name in the logistics and bus industry since the 1980s, known for their good customer service and well maintained fleet of buses. Infact their 1+1 AC sleeper buses are the finest sleeper buses in the entire Maharashtra-Karnataka-Goa territory !! Somehow GPT never went for the Volvos or Mercs even when other top notch operator from Kolhapur viz. Konduskar upgraded to a premium fleet of Volvos or Mercs since the last decade. Konduskar's buses are very well maintained too. Find more details of GPT and their routes here - http://www.gptmohantravels.com/

Around 3 months ago, GPT threw up a shocking surprise by purchasing two Merc SHDs and deployed them on Pune-Kolhapur-Pune route with each bus doing three schedules daily from either end i.e 6.45 a.m, 5.30pm and 11.30pm.

My booking was done online and seat chosen was D2 - second row window seat on RHS. Fare after discount was 370/-. ETA at Mitramandal Chowk,Pune was 11.30pm and the bus promptly arrived at 11.35pm. It starts all the way from Nigdi in Pune. This was the first time I was seeing the Merc SHD live upclose and truly what a marvellous bus it is ! The front and side profiles are eyecandy and by far the most beautiful looking bus on Indian roads at present at par with VOLVO. Rear profile is not great though and this is where aesthetics of Volvo wins hands down. Look at a Volvo from any angle and it simply looks super stunning. Coming back to my journey, the crew consisting of 2 drivers and 1 attender were in clean uniforms (brown in colour) and very well behaved. Many pax boarded the bus here. Attender checked tickets and enquired our respective alighting points. We got moving by 11.40 pm but stopped a little ahead for 10 mins for a late passenger to arrive. There were a couple more pick ups at Katraj junction. Attender handed out 500 ml water bottles to everyone of us. Meanwhile the bus ascended the Katraj ghat effortlessly and we touched the NH4 at 12.15 a.m,thereby exiting Pune. Crossed Khed Shivapur toll by 12.20 a.m. Speeds seemed to be in the 85-95kmph range wherever 6 laning work was completed but driver was extra cautious and slow on the diversions and umpteen speedbreakers on those diversions. Khambatki ghat had a traffic snarl due to a closure of 1 lane out of 3 lanes following a landslide which ate up 10 minutes. Bus did not have to fag away on this ghat too and performed well. Took a good 2 hours 25 minutes to cover Pune--Satara 100 kms sector which is under widening for 6 laning (including a total of 25 mins break time). Once past Satara, the bus picked up consistent speeds in the range of 90-100 kmph on the supersmooth highway. Quick biobreaks happened at some of the toll plazas enroute. At one point, we might have been doing 85-90 kmph when Konduskar pink Volvo B9R multiaxle also working 11.30pm Pune-Kolhapur service overtook us. We stayed right behind the Konduskar though. We overtook the NWKRTC Airavat Volvo B9R Aurangabad-Pune-Belgaum bus that had left about 20 minutes before us from Pune. NEETA red Volvo B9R doing 11.30pm Pune-Kolhapur passed us when we had stopped for a biobreak. Came across / overtook many other premium and non-premium buses heading to various destinations but not going into those details. Satara--Karad 55 kms was covered in 40 minutes and Karad--Kolhapur 70 kms was covered in 50 minutes. Pax who got down at Karad were individually informed about the alighting point by the attender. He did not resort to disturb everyone's sleep by switching on main lights and shouting loudly, that we often see most operators do. This helped people travelling till end of the destination have an uninterrupted peaceful sleep. We exited NH4 for Kolhapur city by 3.35 a.m and reached Kolhapur bus stand at 3.45 a.m sharp. We were 45 mins ahead of the scheduled arrival at 4.30 a.m. Either ways, it takes a max of 3.5-4 hours on this route at night time, so we were actually on time that way. Konduskar pink B9R arrived in the immediate next minute and NEETA red B9R and NWKRTC B9R arrived within next 5 minutes. NEETA red Volvo B9R was pretty maintained too. My personal observations of the bus made during the course of the journey -

1. Its a looooong bus. Get inside and the last row seems even more far !

1. The interiors of the bus are fairly good if not lavish. I did not find it that bad. The seating layout is floored i.e its at the same level as that of the gangway (unlike elevated in previous mercs or existing scanias or volvos) but probably that is done to accomodate more space in the boot and hence called SuperHighDeck ?? This may not give a premium feel but somehow the typical green matting in the floor in the gangway didn’t make it appear that bad either.

2. Driver cabin looks too swanky !

3. This bus has 55 seats i.e 14 rows with 2 seats foregone near emergency exit. This means adequate and good leg space between the rows. Passenger consoles were placed appropriately. Compare this with APR Mercedes SHD down south which has 15 rows and 61 seats resulting in cramped legroom !

4. Seats are different from the previous mercs, being more stuffed and more comfortable. They were of the ''Crystal'' model ( not sure if it is from Harita)

5. Passenger console is almost same as in earlier Mercs but looks a little different. AC vents are drop down type and cooling effect was effective enough.

6. Overhead luggage space –This is surely more than a Volvo or Scania and there are no partitions in between, its continuous.

7. Night lamps in the gangway - I was mighty impressed with this one. Blue lights has become a standard in all premium buses these days - but the ones in Scania are annoyingly bright, the ones in new Volvos are okay while the ones in this particular Merc SHD were of moderate intensity. Not too bright but still served the puprose. I didn't feel a wee bit of irritation on my eyes whenever I woke up from sleep. Soothing lights I must say !

8. Emergency hammers provided for each window. Full sized emergency exit at the rear

9. Window side handrest is foldable in new Mercs too. I always find this feature a good one, helps to create more space in your seat in case you need.

10. No digital clock inisde the bus. The air vents that opened directly on the windows in earlier Mercs have been done away with. They open into the overhead luggage rack ( akin to Volvo or Scania)

11. Unfortunately the charging point in new Merc SHDs is now placed near the floor which is inconvenient ( same as in a Volvo or Scania). Other day I spoke about how perfectly it was placed across the level of thighs in earlier Mercs.

12. It’s not that supersilent inside the coach and I felt the audibility of engine noise being exactly the same as earlier Mercs. Bus seemed to have some mild rattles but not a big issue. I believe an average passenger wouldn't notice these things , as the bus overall is fairly good and the ride is comfortable. I had a peaceful ride though the suspension seemed a bit on harder side ( or may be my subjective perception).

13. ODO reading was 44,700 odd kms.

14. Last but not the least, for the first time ever in my life, I saw the bus crew insisting first row passengers to engage seat belts throughout the journey. They made this request politely but ensured all 4 pax in first row wore them. I have never in a govt. Volvo too seen anyone being bothered one bit about the importance of seat belt. Extremely impressed with GPT crew

Ratings- Overall 5/5

Driving was smooth and safe, no honking , no jerky brakings et all ; Amenities provided were only water bottles, no blankets given ; TVs had to be obviously kept switched off ; Charging point remained ON

I am a regular with Konduskar Volvos on this route and have always had good experiences with them but GPT too lived upto its legacy of providing a clean service. I would highly recommend GPT Mercedes SHD for Pune-Kolhapur-Pune. GPT sent a ''Thank you for travelling with us and so on……'' message at the end of the journey.

Thanks for reading

Sharing some pics of the bus I travelled, bearing regn no. MH 08 G 1600. My phone went kaput and spare phone didn't have cam, so sharing pics from google. The buses when just new probably did not have screens but now they have been put in place.

Credits for all pics - Shantanu
Attached Thumbnails
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Last edited by vivek95 : 6th July 2016 at 15:13. Reason: additional content, grammar
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