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Melbourne's B class trams introduced the articulation principle to the tramway system. Two B1 class trams were introduced, 2001 in 1984 and 2002 in 1985 as test vehicles to evaluate features intended for the 130 production B2 class vehicles. These two trams, based on the A class design, were originally fitted with dual height steps to enable loading from either street level or railway platform height, as it was originally intended to utilise former railway platforms when the St.Kilda and Port Melbourne railway lines were converted to light rail in 1987. Subsequently, it was decided to build low level platforms on the light rail lines, so the steps were standardised.
2001 and 2002 were originally allocated to Camberwell Depot for use on Route 75 to East Burwood, and they now live at Southbank Depot where they operate on Route 96 - the St.Kilda light rail line and route 12 from City - Brunswick St to Sth Melbourne and St Kilda Beach. Both trams have spent much time out of service awaiting spare parts peculiar to them.
Click here for a list of A and B1 class tram destinations.
B1 2002 and SW6 881 at the former South Melbourne Depot.
Photo by Clive Mottram.
B2 class trams (2003 - 2132) were the production version of the B1 class, introducing air conditioning and dot matrix destination indicators to the tramway system. They were originally allocated to South Melbourne Depot (now closed) for use on the St.Kilda (Route 96) and Port Melbourne (Route 111) light rail lines, but now operate services from Southbank Depot (Routes 12 and 96), Camberwell Depot (Routes 70 and 75), Brunswick Depot (Routes 1, 19 and 22), Essendon Depot (Routes 55, 59 and 68) and East Preston Depot (Routes 11 and 86).
The only modification to the class has been the fitting of CCTV to enable the rear door to be viewed when the tram is operated by the driver only. Yarra Trams are repainting their B class trams in the new blue and grey colour scheme, the first being B2 2125 in March 2000. Listed below are all the B class trams and their depot allocation.
B1 2001 Southbank Depot. B1 2002 Southbank Depot.
B2 2003 Essendon Depot. B2 2004 Essendon Depot. B2 2005 Essendon Depot. B2 2006 Camberwell Depot. B2 2007 Essendon Depot. Fitted with adapted cab from an A class tram B2 2008 Brunswick Depot. B2 2009 Camberwell Depot. B2 2010 Camberwell Depot. B2 2011 Camberwell Depot. B2 2012 Southbank Depot. B2 2013 Preston Depot. B2 2014 Essendon Depot. TH Melbourne Water B2 2015 Camberwell Depot. B2 2016 Malvern Depot. B2 2017 Brunswick Depot.
B2 2018 Preston Depot. B2 2019 Camberwell Depot. Yarra Trams blue & grey colour scheme. B2 2020 Southbank Depot. Yarra Trams blue & grey colour scheme. B2 2021 Southbank Depot. B2 2022 Brunswick Depot. B2 2023 Preston Depot. B2 2024 Preston Depot. B2 2025 Essendon Depot. B2 2026 Camberwell Depot. B2 2027 Southbank Depot. B2 2028 Camberwell Depot. Yarra Trams blue & grey colour scheme. B2 2029 Camberwell Depot B2 2030 Essendon Depot. B2 2031 Camberwell Depot. B2 2032 Camberwell Depot. B2 2033 Essendon Depot. B2 2034 Camberwell Depot. B2 2035 Preston Depot. B2 2036 Preston Depot. B2 2037 Camberwell Depot. B2 2038 Preston Depot. B2 2039 Preston Depot. B2 2040 Camberwell Depot. B2 2041 Preston Depot. B2 2042 Malvern Depot. B2 2043 Southbank Depot. B2 2044 Brunswick Depot. New M>Tram livery B2 2045 Camberwell Depot. B2 2046 Camberwell Depot. B2 2047 Preston Depot. B2 2048 Preston Depot. B2 2049 Preston Depot. B2 2050 Camberwell Depot. Yarra Trams blue and grey colour scheme. B2 2051 Essendon Depot. B2 2052 Preston Depot. Fitted with adapted A class cab B2 2053 Preston Depot. B2 2054 Brunswick Depot. B2 2055 Essendon Depot. TH Novotel B2 2056 Malvern Depot. B2 2057 Preston Depot. B2 2058 Preston Depot. New Yarra Trams livery. B2 2059 Southbank Depot. TH Renault B2 2060 Southbank Depot. B2 2061 Southbank Depot. B2 2062 Brunswick Depot. B2 2063 Camberwell Depot. B2 2064 Brunswick Depot. TH Renault B2 2065 Southbank Depot. TH Mobil Synergy B2 2066 Brunswick Depot. B2 2067 Preston Depot. B2 2068 Southbank Depot. TH Acland St St Kilda strip shopping B2 2069 Southbank Depot. TH Omega Timekeeping Tools B2 2070 Preston Depot. B2 2071 Brunswick Depot. B2 2072 Brunswick Depot. B2 2073 Southbank Depot. B2 2074 Essendon Depot. B2 2075 Southbank Depot. B2 2076 Southbank Depot. B2 2077 Preston Depot. B2 2078 Essendon Depot. First B2 class tram in M>Tram livery. B2 2079 Southbank Depot. B2 2080 Preston Depot. B2 2081 Brunswick Depot. B2 2082 Preston Depot. B2 2083 Preston Depot. B2 2084 Southbank Depot. TH Telstra B2 2085 Essendon Depot. B2 2086 Brunswick Depot. B2 2087 Essendon Depot. B2 2088 Brunswick Depot. B2 2089 Brunswick Depot. B2 2090 Camberwell Depot. B2 2091 Brunswick Depot. B2 2092 Essendon Depot. B2 2093 Camberwell Depot. B2 2094 Preston Depot. B2 2095 Kew Depot. B2 2096 Essendon Depot. B2 2097 Brunswick Depot. B2 2098 Brunswick Depot. B2 2099 Essendon Depot. B2 2100 Essendon Depot. TH Mastercard B2 2101 Southbank Depot. B2 2102 Brunswick Depot. B2 2103 Camberwell Depot. THHong Kong & Shanghai Banking Company. B2 2104 Brunswick Depot. B2 2105 Malvern Depot. B2 2106 Brunswick Depot. B2 2107 Preston Depot. B2 2108 Southbank Depot. TH ABBA the musical
B2 2109 Southbank Depot. TH Tag Heuer B2 2110 Essendon Depot. B2 2111 Southbank Depot. TH Christmas Comes Alive At Crown B2 2112 Essendon Depot. TH Whirlpool microwave oven B2 2113 Essendon Depot. B2 2114 Essendon Depot. B2 2115 Essendon Depot. B2 2116 Essendon Depot. B2 2117 Southbank Depot. B2 2118 Essendon Depot. B2 2119 Southbank Depot. TH Luna Park. B2 2120 Brunswick B2 2121 Southbank Depot. B2 2122 Essendon Depot. B2 2123 Southbank Depot B2 2124 Southbank Depot B2 2125 Southbank Depot The first to be repainted by Yarra Trams in its new blue and grey colour scheme in March 2000. B2 2126 Preston Depot. B2 2127 Preston Depot. B2 2128 Essendon Depot. B2 2129 Camberwell Depot. B2 2130 Brunswick Depot. B2 2131 Camberwell Depot. B2 2132 Camberwell Depot.
TH - All over advertising car.
SB - Skybreaker advertising panels fitted above windows.
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Many thanks to Yao Yao for much information re B class trams, especially advertising trams.
Trams no longer in service.
Trams still in service
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Swanston and Yarra Trams for technical details of Melbourne's tram system.
Queensland Railways EMU Sets. with links to SMU, IMU and ICE pages.
Melbourne's Advertising Trams Current tram advertising liveries
Electric Traction on the Net trams and electric railways from all over the world
All the info on Melbourne's decorated and historic trams Melbourne's Trams to the Millennium
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Swanston and Yarra Trams
Victorian Railways trams
Ballarat Vintage Tramway Ballarat trams are Ballarat history.
Melbourne Tramcar Preservation Association