Andy sent me this photo yesterday of GM New Look he spotted at the Eastern States Exposition in Springfield, Mass. The New Look design is affectionately referred to among busophiles as the Fishbowl due to its large windshield. Fist introduced in 1959, the New Look would remain in production for the next 25 years. During that time over 44,000 were produced for transit authorities across North America. The ol’ Fisbowl is now considered an icon in bus design worldwide.
Considering that the New Look was produced by GM it doesn’t take much thought to figure out what powerplant was used. That’s right, Detroit Diesel (Demand Detroit), most often the 6V71.
So what do we know about this piece of transit history? From Andy’s account and photos we learn that this bus now sports upgraded seats with LED lighting present in the cabin. Looking at the rear of the bus we learn that C&J Coach is the current operator. Up front the destination sign still wears the name of its past employer, Golden Gate Transit. If you stop by GGT they actually have a New Look bus in their logo. At some point this bus was hauled across they country to run the roads of the northeast. More digging online reveals that this New Look to be a TH8-5306A model. If we break down the code we can learn all the juicy details about old Golden Gate Transit 778. The T signifies the bus was constructed as transit model which means it was setup for everyday stop and go inner city bus traffic. The H tells the transmission is an automatic. The 8 signifies a Detroit 8V71. The 53 tells us the length of the bus, 40 feet. The 06 tells us the series while the A equals air conditioning. This guy was styling back in the day! Now before you applaud by bus knowledge please know I cribbed all this info from wikipedia. Click here to revew the complete arcticle that has more info than you may care to learn.
While researching this bus I came across a group dedicated to old buses. They gather together on occasion to share their passion for mass transit vehicles. You can check out their facebook page by clicking here. I was also able to find a few videos of this bus from a meet they held this past November. If you skip to the 17:29 mark you can watch 778 in action. To see the bus in its natural habitat (stuck in traffic) skip the the 31:22 mark and enjoy the sounds of an idling 8V71.
And just incase you needed more here it is again driving through the snow. This video provides the best engine sound of the two. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2M1r4qCYDkM