London set to have Europe’s largest fleet of electric double-deckers

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Optare’s Metrodecker EV forms part of the order, with the remaining 37 buses being provided by the BYD/ADL partnership

68 new zero-emission double-deckers – produced by the BYD/ADL partnership and Optare – are due to join London’s fleet next summer, creating the largest electric double-decker fleet in Europe.

The move was announced earlier today by Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan at a national air quality summit, with city leaders from across England and Wales present.

These 68 new vehicles represent a more than tenfold increase in the number of electric double-deckers in the capital’s fleet.

Of the total order, 37 will be BYD ADL Enviro400EVs and the remaining 31 will be Optare Metrodecker EVs.

Next year, TfL aims to have 240 electric buses running on the network and for all new double-deck buses to be zero-emissions or hybrid, with every single-deck bus in central London to be zero-emission by the following year. Ultimately, by 2037 all buses in London will be zero-emission.

Routes 43 and 134 from Barnet to central London, run by Metroline, are due to be operated exclusively using these new electric buses.

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: “Today’s summit is a historic moment for the country. Leaders from across England and Wales have never met in such numbers to tackle our nation’s toxic air quality. It shows how serious our problem is and how committed we are to tackling it.

“In London we’re helping to lead the way with my Ultra Low Emission Zone, and I’m delighted to be able to announce a Europe-leading new fleet of electric double-decker buses too. We’re doing all we can to improve our air quality and we need the government to match our ambition to solve this national health crisis.”

Claire Mann, TfL’s Director of Bus Operations, said: “We’re committed to reducing emissions from London’s buses and making routes 43 and 134 exclusively electric is an important step to a zero-emission fleet.

“Buses are crucial to reduce Londoners’ reliance on cars, and with this landmark order it means the largest pure electric double-deck bus fleet in Europe will help reduce emissions across the capital.

“Electric buses are good for air quality and improve the customer experience, with less noise and fewer vibrations, all creating a more comfortable journey.”

Speaking about the BYD ADL vehicles, Metroline’s Chief Executive Officer Jaspal Singh said: “Operating zero-emission all electric buses on route 43 confirms Metroline’s continued commitment to London, our customers and Transport for London.

“The 37 new BYD ADL Enviro400EVs have very impressive environmental credentials and will deliver significant benefits for Londoners. Metroline’s latest investment underscores our resolve to lead the industry and continually deliver the very best service for London.”

Meanwhile, Isbrand Ho, BYD Europe’s Managing Director commented: “Our joint team has made tremendous progress in winning tenders for TfL routes across the capital with our 10.8 and 12m single deckers.

“But with 6,800 double deckers on London streets, their full electrification is the key to making maximum beneficial impact on air quality for Londoners.

“We are delighted, in the face of intensifying competition, to win the largest first order for electric double deck buses in London and to retain our position at the top of the electric bus sales league.”

ADL CEO Colin Robertson added: “So far the Enviro200EV single decks have delivered in excess of 1.5 million miles of zero emission transport in the UK.  This new contract for double decks takes the BYD ADL collaboration to a whole new level in every sense.

“We look forward to continuing our journey of improving air quality, while responding to the operational demands of our customers and the requirements of their passengers with this brand new vehicle.”