London Takes Delivery of First All-Electric Double-Decker Bus

BYD pure electric double deck bus on the street of London
BYD pure electric double deck bus on the street of London
BYD pure electric double decker bus on the street of London

BYD today in London announced the delivery of the world’s first zero-emission, all-electric, double-decker bus. Designed and developed for Transport for London, the local government organization responsible for most aspects of London’s transport system, BYD’s new bus can drive 190 miles on 345 kWh of iron phosphate battery storage (for comparison, a Chevy Volt has 18.4 kWh, the Nissan Leaf has 30 kWh, and the Tesla Model S has 85 kWh). The BYD bus seats 54 and can accommodate an additional 27 standees, is fully air conditioned, and can be charged in four hours using a DC fast charger. The bus delivered today is the first of five which will enter service shortly.

BYD’s all-electric double-decker buses complement Transport for London’s existing efforts to electrify the urban mass-transit fleet. Last summer, at the announcement of the expansion of the city’s single-deck electric bus fleet, Mike Weston, Transport for London’s Director of Buses, remarked:

[Transport for London] has always been at the forefront of deploying new, green technology in order to reduce harmful emissions from its bus fleet. . . . Electric buses represent another important step in our ongoing efforts to reduce emissions, significantly improving air quality in the Capital.

Under contracts with Spanish bus manufacturer Irizar and United Kingdom manufacturer Optare, more than 50 single-deck all-electric buses are planned to serve the citizens of London over the next few years. Transport for London expects that by 2020 all 300 single deck buses operating in central London will be zero emission (either electric or hydrogen), and all 3,000 double deck buses will be hybrid or better.

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