London Virtual Electric rollout

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The three Tower Transit Enviro400VE ‘virtual electrics’ have now been fully integrated into route 69 operation. KRIS LAKE
The three Tower Transit Enviro400VE ‘virtual electrics’ have now been fully integrated into route 69 operation. KRIS LAKE

Last weekend saw the full integration by Tower Transit of the three Alexander Dennis (ADL) Enviro400VE ‘virtual electrics’ on Transport for London contracted route 69 (Walthamstow Central to Canning Town). There are induction plates sunk into the road surface at the bus stations at either end of the route and that enables the buses to recharge.

Tower Transit had been expected to takeover service 69 from Stagecoach London in April although this was brought forward to February 6. It’s operating the route from Lea Interchange. The Enviro400VEs were delivered direct to it and the first appeared in experimental service on the 69 in early November.

ADL says its virtual electric can match the work-cycle of a standard diesel bus, but can run up to 80% of the time in electric mode. A GPS system switches off the hybrid drive in emission sensitive areas, only restarting it when the bus enters other parts of the route