Optimus low floor route bus


  • Volgren Australia Pty Ltd
  • MADA - Monash University Faculty of Art Design & Architecture


Volgren’s Optimus route bus body continues a long tradition of Victorian-manufactured vehicles for public transport by offering new standards in reliability, build quality, and value for money to bus operators. It achieves improved occupant comfort, convenience and contemporary styling ensuring the effective provision of public transport services and a welcome place in our towns and cities.
Developed in partnership between Volgren, Australia’s largest bus bodywork manufacturer and the Department of Design research team at MADA – Monash University Art Design & Architecture, Optimus is an agent for positive change in the manufacture, implementation and operation of bus transport in Victoria.

Key Features


Designed for local manufacture.
The Optimus design enables Volgren’s progress in local manufacturing efficiency by modularising production. Designed in a cross-disciplinary setting with Volgren’s engineering, production, process and sales groups the Optimus bus strikes a careful balance between in-house assembly capabilities and the value-add of components manufactured in the local supply chain; this cements Volgren’s commitment to local manufacture.


Designed for maintenance and repair.
Functional appeal is created through prioritisation of design for maintenance and repair, informed by primary research at bus depots. This delivers vehicle resilience and ease of repair; critical performance characteristics to the bus operator providing reduced vehicle downtime – either for scheduled maintenance or accident repair. The depot research has directly informed the placement and selection of details such as fasteners, access hatches, and safer working environments for technical staff in and around the vehicle.


Designed to improve public transport’s image.
An analysis of Volgren visual DNA led the creation of a new aesthetic. Contemporary styling brings desirability and street presence affecting uptake in the vehicle market and reducing known psychological barriers to public transport, improving an already socially strong product. Public transport is an essential element in the successful function of a city’s economic, environmental and liveability characteristics, as well as making the most efficient use of key road infrastructure. Crisp contemporary styling and up-to-date safety and performance features such as LED lighting combine to give the bus broad aesthetic appeal.


Designed for the passenger.
The interior delivers new standards of comfort and amenity, in particular an easy-to-clean saloon with pleasing surface treatments. Fully compliant with Australian Standards, Design Rules and Disability Access, the Optimus vehicle goes beyond these requirements to create a comfortable interior saloon amenable to passengers having a pleasant, productive journey. Interior trim colours and indirect lighting transform the bus interior into a pleasant non-jarring environment.


Designed for bus operator customisation.
Scope for vehicle customisation is embedded in tune with market demands. The Optimus design is capable of deployment across a wide range of chassis marques and length variants, from 11M Midi to 18M articulated buses. Optimus also provides the bus operator with the necessary technical options to integrate the vehicle into their existing fleet, for example by means of a customisable instrument panel for the driver, and continuation of operator-specified fabrics. End user adoption is strong, with three large transport operators – two of which are publicly funded – already taking delivery of new vehicles.

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