Press release

Up to 4000 LED lamps on board: Lighting technology as illustrated by the example of the Setra TopClass 500.


  • 4000 LEDs and more in the top-of-the-range Setra touring coaches
  • LED lamps as long-lasting and reliable exterior lighting
  • Vast numbers of LED lamps in interior lighting

The new LED headlamps on the Setra TopClass 500 and ComfortClass 500 and on the Mercedes-Benz Citaro represent the culmination of years of development work in the field of LED lighting. Durable and power-saving LED lights are used at numerous points on buses from Setra and Mercedes-Benz. On a bus with the full complement of LED lighting, LED accounts for around 95 of the vehicle's total lighting. The top-of-the-range Setra S 517 HDH of the TopClass 500 line, for example, features almost 4000 LEDs in all for the exterior and interior lighting.

LED lamps as long-lasting and reliable exterior lighting

The LED daytime driving lights (optional) on buses from Setra and Mercedes-Benz are particularly striking. Direction indicators, position lamps and side-marker lamps also feature LED technology. The longevity of LED and the attendant reliability and safety is a prime consideration for all these types of lamps. Brake lights, rear lights and the lamps of the licence plate lighting are also based on LED technology today – these lamps are robust and thus fail-safe. The number of LED lamps employed in the exterior lighting adds up to a maximum of 140.

The rear lights of the current Setra touring coaches are deserving of particular attention, as their lamps appear to hover. This effect is down to a trick employing a lens featuring printed light spots – two dozen in two vertical lines – which is positioned between the glass cover and the LEDs. These light spots project the light of the LEDs out to the rear.

The exterior lighting on the buses also continues to include classic light sources. Front fog lamps, rear fog lamps, reversing lights and engine compartment lighting are all activated only rarely, in view of which the use of LEDs would not make economic sense for the customer. Consequently, halogen lamps continue to be used for front fog lamps, while classic bulbs remain in service for the even more rarely used rear fog lamps, reversing lamps and engine compartment lamps.

Vast numbers of LED lamps in interior lighting

LED technology now plays an extremely important role in interior lighting for buses. On the Mercedes-Benz Citaro, LED light strips above the doors and under the door sills point the way for boarding and alighting passengers. In the aisle, the two light strips to the left and right of the centre section of the ceiling can optionally be fitted with LED lamps. LED reading lamps and LED ambient lighting are also optionally available for the passenger compartment of the Citaro. These two LED features together create an individual atmosphere in the area of the seating while at the same time ensuring that no part of the bus remains unlit and thus without surveillance.

LED technology is also employed for the cockpit lighting and instruments on board both the Citaro and the TopClass 500.

As a premium touring coach boasting a diverse range of equipment and appointments, the TopClass 500 even features over a thousand LED lamps in its passenger compartment. Light strips with six LEDs per ten centimetres above the luggage racks, the ambient lighting at the sides, service sets over the double seats, each with a light ring consisting of eight LEDs, plus the reading lamps – LED lighting is used throughout, providing the basis for a fascinating impression of spaciousness.

Apparently incidental lighting, such as the obligatory step illumination on touring coaches or the optional edge lighting on the steps, also features LED technology. By way of example, around 4000 LED lamps are in service on a fully equipped Setra S 517 HDH.