If you’re travelling on one of the UK’s iconic double decker buses in London, Birmingham or Manchester, you might like to take a second look. Chances are that the bus electric, emissions free and silent compared to the blaring rumble of its fossil-fuelled cousins.
Chinese electric vehicle maker BYD has topped 100 sales to the UK of its 100% electric double decker buses in July, adding to the country’s growing fleet of zero emissions public transport.
The announcement came via BYD as well as busmaker Alexander Dennis Limited (ADL), with the final milestone sale of 19 emissions-free electric double decker Enviro400EVs nabbed by UK bus operator National Express for Birmingham.
“This is a notable achievement by the BYD ADL team in the UK, underlining the strength and depth of the partnership,” said Arthur Whiteside, head of UK sales at ADL in a statement to the press.
“We have achieved significant market penetration in just three years, while the uptake for the Enviro400EV has been extremely encouraging since we started production in February.
“The move to electrification is well underway and we’re pleased to be leading the charge. Operators appreciate the significant benefits the Enviro400EV offers – which combines 100% emission-free operations with the comfort, style and safety that make the Enviro400 the UK’s favourite double deck bus.”
In addition to the Birmingham sale, there are also 37 all-electric Enviro400EVs in operation on London’s Route 43 (Friern Barnet to London Bridge), 29 on Route 94 (Acton Green to Piccadilly Circus), as well as 32 servicing routes in Manchester to the city centre, Manchester Airport and Piccadilly Train Station.
Worldwide, BYD have now sold 50,000 all-electric buses and coaches.
“We see the demand for full electric mobility only increasing, and for two good reasons – public demand and fleet productivity,” said Frank Thorpe, managing director at BYD (UK) in a statement.
“An increasingly well-educated public is calling for a sustainable future and zero-emissions public transport can play a key role in helping people switch to an energy-saving mindset. Pure electric operation is having a truly dramatic impact on air quality in our towns and cities, and that’s good news for everyone.”
“For operators, electric mobility offers long-term productivity gains for scheduled-service bus fleets, regardless of their size, as proven by public transport operators right across Europe. We look forward to engaging further with UK operators in our mission to bring 100% emissions-free mobility to our streets.”
As well as all-electric buses from BYD, London also has a number of Optare Metrodecker buses in operation.
It is also becoming well known for its thousands of retro-styled electric taxis made by London EV Company which last Friday estimated it has saved 6800 tonnes of carbon dioxide in addition to huge amounts of particulate pollution from being added to London air.
Bridie Schmidt is lead reporter for The Driven, sister site of Renew Economy. She specialises in writing about new technology and has been writing about electric vehicles for two years. She has a keen interest in the role that zero emissions transport has to play in sustainability and is co-organiser of the Northern Rivers Electric Vehicle Forum.