Morgan Motor Company will bring an iconic Routemaster bus – the second-to-last edition to have been withdrawn from service – back to the British public at events throughout 2018.
Manufactured, like the first Morgan Plus 8, in 1968 and delivered for its first service in January of that year, this Routemaster with registration SMK759F is expected to have clocked over 1.5 million miles (2.41 million kilometres) during its lifetime. The vehicle was withdrawn from service nearly 44 years after manufacture and was given an admirable send-off on 9 December 2005. Crowds gathered along the 159 bus route, from Marble Arch to Brixton, as it took its final journey.
At this beginning of this year, Morgan Motor Company acquired the bus, which is in incredible condition, and work is underway to make sympathetic conversions. Preserving its characteristics and many of its original features, the Routemaster will share 50th anniversary celebrations with the Plus 8 in 2018 and be an accomplice at multiple events for Morgan throughout 2018, showcasing the iconic features of the Morgan brand.
The Malvern-based company is renowned for its hand-crafted vehicles, with true craftsmanship that can be transferred, therefore it is fitting that all designs for the bus as well as enhancements will be entirely carried out in-house.
This bus, RML2759, features a 7.7-litre Iveco diesel engine. Its sister vehicle and very last of its kind to be taken out of service can be found on display at the London Bus Museum at Brooklands.
Steve Morris, Managing Director of Morgan Motor Company, said: “The Routemaster bus is arguably one of the most iconic vehicles in existence, it serves as a symbol of Britain and is part of our national identity. It therefore gives us great pleasure to continue the life of one of the last decommissioned buses as our event space. Morgan has an exciting year ahead, and we can’t wait to utilise the bus at events all around the UK. Our plans for the bus will make it the ideal event space for Morgan customers and enthusiasts alike.