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Old look bus

GM "old-look" transit bus

The GM "old-look" transit bus was introduced in 1940 by Yellow Coach beginning with the production of the model TG-3201 bus. Yellow Coach was an early bus builder that was partially owned by General Motors (GM) before being purchased outright in 1943 and folded into the GM Truck Division to form the GM Truck & Coach Division. The Yellow Coach badge gave way to the GM nameplate in 1944. Production of most "old-look" models was stopped upon the release of the GM New-Look bus in 1959, however some smaller "old-look" models continued to be built until 1969. Approximately 38,000 "old-look" buses were built during the 29-year production run. The "old-look" name is an unofficial term that was applied to this series of GM buses after the release of the GM New-Look, with "New-Look" being an official term used by GM to describe their new line of buses that superseded the "old-look". This is an example of a retronym.

Design

The GM "old-look" bus was somewhat streamlined in appearance, similar in shape to a loaf of bread, and had windows that were generally smaller than those found on more modern bus designs produced after the 1950s. Unlike most earlier buses, the GM "old-look" bus was built using a monocoque design, rather than a body-on-frame design, and it helped shepherd the change from gasoline to diesel-powered buses. Most "old-look" buses were powered with the Detroit Diesel 6-71 inline six-cylinder diesel engine, the exceptions being the shorter models that were powered by the four-cylinder version of the same diesel engine, and buses that were equipped with gasoline engines. Manual and automatic transmissions were available, with the Spicer angle-drive 2-speed transmission being used on automatic-equipped buses built prior to 1948. After 1948, the 2-speed Allison V-drive transmission was used on automatic-equipped buses. In 1940 and 1942, a small number of buses were built with electric propulsion systems instead of a transmission. The "old-look" was available in several lengths ranging from 25 to 41½ feet, though the most common models were 35 and 40 feet long. Most "old-look" buses were 96 inches wide, but 102-inch wide models were available beginning in 1948. In 1946 GM began offering its Thermo-matic heating and ventilation system, and in 1952 started making suburban models (buses with larger passenger windows, high-backed forward-facing seats, and optional luggage racks). Beginning in 1953, air-ride suspension became standard on all but the smallest model buses, and in 1958, air conditioning was added as an available option.

In 1959, GM introduced its New-Look bus with the "fishbowl" style front window, and production stopped on all "old-look" buses other than the 28-foot models which were built until 1963 and the 30-foot models which were built until 1969.

Model designations

The model designations used for GM "old-look" buses consisted of a series of two or three letters followed by a series of four numbers (for example, TDH-4512). The letters and numbers gave a basic description of the type of bus as follows:

  • (T) denoting a transit bus (GM also built (P) parlor coaches and, beginning in the 1960s, suburban model buses were designated with an (S), however neither suffix was used for any "old-look" models).
  • (D) denoting a diesel engine, or (G) denoting a gasoline engine.
  • (H) denoting a hydraulic (automatic) transmission, (M) denoting a manual transmission, or (E) denoting electric propulsion (this letter was omitted for buses built prior to 1947, except for those with electric propulsion).
  • (##) two numbers denoting the nominal seating capacity and length of the bus: (27) for 25-foot buses, (31) or (32) for 28-foot buses, (35) or (36) for 30-foot buses, (40) for 33-foot buses, (45) for 35-foot buses, (48) for 37¾-foot buses, (51) for 40-foot buses, and (54) or (55) for 41½-foot buses.
  • (##) two numbers denoting the model number.

Models produced

The following buses are organized by vehicle length (all buses are 96 inches wide unless noted).

25 feet long

  • TD-2701 - 55 units built in 1940-1941 (built by Yellow Coach)
  • TG-2701 - 245 units built in 1940-1941 (built by Yellow Coach)
  • TD-2705 - 60 units built in 1941-1942 (built by Yellow Coach)
  • TG-2705 - 2 units built in 1941 (built by Yellow Coach)
  • TG-2706 - 422 units built in 1941-1942 (built by Yellow Coach)
  • TGH-2708 - 302 units built in 1949-1951

28 feet long

  • TD-3201 - 141 units built in 1940-1941 (built by Yellow Coach)
  • TG-3201 - 63 units built in 1940-1941 (built by Yellow Coach)
  • TD-3205 - 194 units built in 1941-1942 (built by Yellow Coach)
  • TG-3205 - 71 units built in 1941-1942 (built by Yellow Coach)
  • TD-3206 - 675 units built in 1945-1946
  • TG-3206 - 175 units built in 1945-1946
  • TDH-3207 - 737 units built in 1947-1948
  • TDM-3207 - 38 units built in 1947-1948
  • TGH-3207 - 269 units built in 1947-1948
  • TGM-3207 - 101 units built in 1947-1948
  • TDH-3209 - 53 units built in 1949
  • TDM-3209 - 27 units built in 1949
  • TGH-3101 - 751 units built in 1950-1952
  • TGH-3102 - 1605 units built in 1953-1963

30 feet long

  • TD-3601 - 44 units built in 1940-1941 (built by Yellow Coach)
  • TG-3601 - 36 units built in 1940-1941 (built by Yellow Coach)
  • TD-3602 - 67 units built in 1940-1941 (built by Yellow Coach)
  • TG-3602 - 233 units built in 1940-1941 (built by Yellow Coach)
  • TG-3603 - 81 units built in 1940 (built by Yellow Coach)
  • TD-3605 - 82 units built in 1941-1942 (built by Yellow Coach)
  • TG-3605 - 150 units built in 1941-1942 (built by Yellow Coach)
  • TD-3606 - 75 units built in 1941-1942 (built by Yellow Coach)
  • TG-3606 - 250 units built in 1941-1942 (built by Yellow Coach)
  • TG-3607 - 50 units built in 1944
  • TG-3608 - 200 units built in 1944
  • TD-3609 - 325 units built in 1945-1946
  • TG-3609 - 1200 units built in 1944-1946
  • TDH-3610 - 1771 units built in 1946-1948
  • TGH-3610 - 5 units built in 1947-1948
  • TDM-3610 - 55 units built in 1947-1948
  • TGM-3610 - 100 units built in 1947-1948
  • TDH-3612 - 1949 units built in 1949-1953
  • TGH-3612 - 68 units built in 1949-1953
  • TDH-3614 - 825 units built in 1953-1960
  • TDH-3714 - 825 units built in 1953-1960
  • TDH-3501 - 1049 units built in 1964-1968
  • TGH-3501 - 116 units built in 1964-1968
  • TDH-3502 - 181 units built in 1968-1969 (45 units were TDH-3502A models equipped with air conditioning)
  • TGH-3502 - 19 units built in 1968

33 feet long

  • TD-4001 - 174 units built in 1940-1941 (built by Yellow Coach)
  • TDE-4001 - 30 units built in 1940 (built by Yellow Coach)
  • TG-4001 - 13 units built in 1940-1941 (built by Yellow Coach)
  • TDE-4002 - 7 units built in 1940 (built by Yellow Coach)
  • TD-4005 - 155 units built in 1941-1942 (built by Yellow Coach)
  • TDE-4005 - 16 units built in 1942 (built by Yellow Coach)
  • TG-4005 - 147 units built in 1941-1942 (built by Yellow Coach)
  • TD-4006 - 60 units built in 1941 (built by Yellow Coach)
  • TG-4006 - 290 units built in 1944
  • TD-4007 - 800 units built in 1944-1945
  • TG-4007 - 325 units built in 1944-1945
  • TDH-4008 - 1491 units built in 1946-1948
  • TDM-4008 - 163 units built in 1947-1948
  • TDH-4010 - 115 units built in 1949-1950
  • TDM-4010 - 4 units built in 1949

35 feet long

  • TD-4502 - 354 units built in 1940-1941 (built by Yellow Coach)
  • TG-4502 - 35 units built in 1940-1941 (built by Yellow Coach)
  • TD-4503 - 2 units built in 1940 (suburban model, built by Yellow Coach)
  • TD-4505 - 733 units built in 1941-1942 (built by Yellow Coach)
  • TG-4505 - 4 units built in 1942 (built by Yellow Coach)
  • TD-4506 - 1200 units built in 1945-1946
  • TDH-4507 - 2899 units built in 1946-1949
  • TDM-4507 - 146 units built in 1947-1949
  • TDH-4509 - 2494 units built in 1949-1953
  • TDM-4509 - 555 units built in 1949-1955
  • TDH-4510 - 501 units built in 1948-1949 (102 inches wide)
  • TDH-4511 - 120 units built in 1950-1951 (102 inches wide)
  • TDH-4512 - 3263 units built in 1953-1959
  • TDM-4512 - 252 units built in 1953-1958
  • TDH-4515 - 40 units built in 1953-1959 (suburban model)
  • TDM-4515 - 412 units built in 1953-1959 (suburban model)

37¾ feet long

Built only for California operators

  • TDH-4801 - 547 units built in 1953-1958 (102 inches wide)
  • TDM-4801 - 75 units built in 1954 (102 inches wide)

40 feet long

  • TDH-5101 - 400 units built in 1948-1949
  • TDH-5102 - 1 unit built in 1949
  • TDH-5103 - 951 units built in 1950-1953 (102 inches wide)
  • TDM-5103 - 37 units built in 1951 (102 inches wide)
  • TDH-5104 - 162 units built in 1952-1953
  • TDM-5104 - 5 units built in 1952
  • TDH-5105 - 3630 units built in 1953-1959 (102 inches wide)
  • TDH-5106 - 1727 units built in 1953-1959
  • TDM-5106 - 110 units built in 1953-1959
  • TDH-5107 - 2 units built in 1952 (suburban model)
  • TDM-5107 - 13 units built in 1952 (suburban model)
  • TDH-5108 - 21 units built in 1953-1959 (suburban model)
  • TDM-5108 - 461 units built in 1953-1959 (suburban model)

41½ feet long

  • TD-5401 - 1 unit built in 1940 (built by Yellow Coach)
  • TDH-5502 - 101 units built in 1948

See also

References

Notes

External links

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