Following the Council’s successful Transforming Cities Bid to the Department for Transport (DfT), it has placed an order for a fleet Yutong E12 electric buses to come into operation early in 2021 as part of a plan to convert Leicester’s three park and ride services to zero emission operation.
As well as reducing bus exhaust emissions, the investment will also finance improved service frequencies and is predicted to cut some 700,000 car miles each year from congested urban roads, as drivers are attracted to switch to electric buses at the city’s Birstall, Enderby and Meynells Gorse Park and Ride sites.
After a comprehensive tendering exercise, the Yutong E12 was selected to operate these routes, based upon criteria such as vehicle performance, battery life, warranties and the total commercial proposition. The 13 new buses will be supplied by Pelican and operated by Roberts Travel Group.
To fulfil passenger expectations, the E12s will be fitted with features including full air conditioning, LED lights, USB charging points and passenger information systems. The vehicles are fitted with 422kWh water cooled batteries, and use DC charging to ensure that the grid constraints were met, and ongoing cost of operation was minimised.
Ian Downie, Pelican’s Head of Yutong Bus UK commented: “We are absolutely delighted to receive the tender award from Leicester City. Their exacting criteria for a proven zero emission bus, with detailed compliance to their vehicle and aftermarket specification, was met by our product and the team from Pelican Bus and Coach. There are over 103,000 Yutong zero emission electric vehicles in operation around the world, and we are looking forward to adding the Leicester vehicles to that number.”
Leicester’ Deputy City Mayor for Environment and Transportation, Cllr Adam Clarke, added: “Electric vehicles will play a big part in our work to improve the city’s air quality, and I look forward to these buses coming into service next year.”