Johnsons first to trial electric bus in Warwickshire

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A Yutong E10 electric bus demonstrator took to the roads around Warwickshire last week and was greeted with thumbs up by users. Local coach and bus operator Johnsons of Henley-in-Arden received the demonstrator from UK distributor for Yutong, Pelican Bus & Coach. Johnsons put the vehicle through its paces with some of its potential customers.

Over three days potential contractors for the buses, like National Grid, NFU Mutual and Warwickshire County Council had the opportunity to travel on the vehicle and find out all about the many advantages that electric buses have to offer over conventional diesel-powered models.

The Yutong E10 demonstrator is seen with Johnsons in Leamington Spa. JOHNSONS

The response was very positive. “Passengers and drivers alike immediately recognised the benefits an electric vehicle offers,” said John Johnson, Commercial Director of Johnsons. “A much quieter and smoother ride, improved driver experience and zero gas and particulate emissions to the local environment – even the heating and air conditioning is powered from the bus battery! Based on the trial, it appears the cost of electricity to operate the bus is less than a quarter of the equivalent diesel cost.”

Richard Crump the Managing Director of Pelican Bus & Coach, the UK agent for Yutong, said; “There are now over 100,000 similar buses in operation in China and around the world and have been for over 10 years. These buses are zero emission – future proof.”

The rise in sustainable travel has increased over recent years with passengers looking for ways to become more environmentally friendly. Johnsons carried out an onboard questionnaire with National Grid employees travelling on the electric vehicle with many mentioning that they would “adapt their commuting habits to become more environmentally friendly.”

Sara Habib, Head of Workplace Services for National Grid, said: “Our colleagues at National Grid were very positive about the electric bus and their journey. The trial reflects our commitment to encouraging and supporting colleagues to reduce their impact on the environment, this includes reducing CO2 emissions and finding more sustainable ways of travelling to work to help stem climate change and create a cleaner, greener Britain.”

Peter Johnson, Operations Director for Johnsons Coach & Bus Travel, said: “For three years now, we’ve invested heavily in the latest cleanest Euro VI diesel engines for our coach and bus fleet, but zero-emission electric vehicles have to be the future. Coach and bus travel, with both Euro VI and EV, can help provide solutions to the congestion and air quality issues that we all face.”