Bus outside a tube station entrance

Is the new Routemaster value for money?

Date published: 
22 October 2015

Is the New Routemaster value for money and should Transport for London (TfL) order more of them?

The Mayor launched the new-look Routemaster in 2011. It was intended to be an iconic update of the classic London bus design, allowing passengers to hop on and off. But critics point out flaws including the top deck being hot, problems with the batteries, bus capacity being lower than intended and only some buses operating with conductors and an open platform.

TfL has an order with Wrightbus for a total of 800 buses to be delivered by May 2016 but it may consider increasing this order to 1,000 as this would allow TfL to contract other bus manufactures to build buses that incorporate its key design features.

Is the New Routemaster value for money? On what basis did TfL make the decision to invest in it? And should TfL be looking to purchase more of them?

The Budget and Performance Committee explored these questions at its meeting in September with represenatives from TfL and wrote a letter to the Managing Director or TfL, setting out its findings, in October. Information on the Routemaster project provided by TfL in advance of the Committee meeting, the Committee's letter to TfL and TfL's response are attached at the bottom of this page.