Bus [TV2's 1955 Leyland Comet]

Maker and role
Leyland Motors Limited, Manufacturer
New Zealand Motor Bodies, Manufacturer
Production date
See full details

Object detail

Accession number
Production period
1955 Leyland Comet. The exterior is painted in neon green, metallic plum and fitted with stainless steel accents. It has the late 1990s TV2 logo on both sides and back. A hand making the peace sign is on the front grill (there is smaller version of this on back of bus). There is a single access door on front left of bus and an emergency escape door in the middle on the right side. Windows feature around upper third of sides and back, all slide open horizontally. Two headlights on each side of front with indicators above and three orange lights at the top centre. The roof has been modified with tread plate. Light-up stop sign and arrow indicators are on the back of the bus.

The inside of the bus is coloured mint green and cream/brown textured panelling. There are dark green leather/vinyl/chrome seats and green linoleum flooring. Luggage racks above seating on both sides of bus. Lights and air vents mounted to roof down centre of bus. Seating: 15 x double seats mounted through centre of bus, 1x back seat which can seat 5 people, 1x drivers seat, 1x front passenger seat located next to driver. Driver also has personal Sanyo fan mounted to dashboard of bus.
Brief History
Leyland Comets were a medium-weight chassis brought out by Leyland in 1948 as an alternative to the heavier chassis produced by the company. They were produced until 1971. MOTAT’s 1955 Comet was New Zealand new to Weld Motors and sold to Wairarapa company Mercury Buses in 1975 to be used as a school bus. In 1996, TV2 acquired the bus from Mercury Buses for a re-branding project led by Saatchi & Saatchi. The bus had a mechanical overhaul and body work completed by respective Palmerston North companies, Malcolm’s Automotive Surgery and Widdup Engineering.

Between 1998 and 2002 the bus drove the length of Aotearoa to promote local talent, advertise for TV2 and feature in community events. Widdup Engineering fitted marker lights and tread plates to the roof of this iconic Leyland Comet so that actors could dance on top of it when used for advertising.
LEYLAND / COMET / 90 Maker's Plate
2 Logo
Credit Line
Leyland Motors Limited et al. 1955
1996. Bus [TV2's 1955 Leyland Comet], 2017.32. The Museum of Transport and Technology (MOTAT).


Public comments

Thank you for sharing this website.

- MOTAT Curatorial Research posted 3 years ago.

There are some in service photos of this bus here. http://www.businfo.nz/index.php?R=6222&OP=3

- Ian posted 3 years ago.

Thanks for sharing your memory of this bus. It's currently in our Collection Store unit which is not open to visitors.

- MOTAT Curatorial Research posted 4 years ago.

This bus has played a major part in my childhood. I grew up in the early 2000s and I remember watching TV2 and seeing the bus in between shows, driving to the tune of "You only wanna be with 2". I've also seen the bus among other classic buses at MOTAT at an earlier point in my life but I can't seem to find it around the museum grounds these days. where has it gone and where can I see it?

- Kaleb posted 4 years ago.

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