Going away party: D60LF

Yeah, yeah, these King County Metro D60LF coaches are going away next year. We know it’s kinda early to celebrate *ehem* but now we know Metro wants to get rid of them sooner.

Some more facts that I learned from the forums:

  • These coaches were ordered in 2004 by Metro alongside its cousins, the DE60LF coaches that replaced 236 Bredas. A small quantity was ordered, which made these coaches ‘oddballs’.
  • From 2004-2012, these coaches operated exclusively on routes 48 and 120, with occasional use on other urban routes. Yes, the 120. I don’t know if you know this, but these were the O.G. coaches of the Ambaum-White Center-Delridge corridor. Along with the Phantom 35 footers which took you to the university and back on a good weekday.
  • You can distinguish these coaches from the DE60LFs, because they have a flat tail roof with the AC unit in the front.
  • Unlike its DE60LF cousins, these D60LFs only get 2.8 miles per gallon. (By comparison, the D60HF on similar mileage does 3.5 MPG, and both vehicles are of similar weight. Hybrids generally do better than either of the straight diesels.)
  • Both D60LF and DE60LF coaches could have gotten better mileage with the Cummins ISL family of engines. D60LFs suffered even worse.
  • These D60LF coaches are equipped with a standard 6-speed transmission on 330 HP. Allison, the company that makes transmissions and parallel hybrid drives for our New Flyers, disabled the sixth gear on these Caterpillar buses, causing a bit more wear-and-tear than usual. Don’t know why. Y’gotta ask Allison, but I don’t really see a point in doing that.
  • All coaches will be on the chopping block by September 2018, when the new urban coaches come around the block.
  • In preparation for the RapidRide H-Line, Metro may put three-door urban coaches in regular and BRT styles on the 120. You can count on a 35-60% that your next 120 trip will be on a three-door urban coach by September 2018.

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