Manchester Orders Its First Electric Buses

APR 16 2014 BY MARK KANE 5

BYD ebus Enters Service in London

BYD ebus Enters Service in London

Manchester joins several other cities in England with EV buses as Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM) orders 13 Versa hybrid 12m-long school buses and 3 Versa 9.7m-long electric buses. Those three electric buses will be the very first in Manchester and should go into operation in a few months.

Electric buses, bought thanks to support from the Department for Transport’s Green Bus Fund, will operate on the Metroshuttle routes linking the main rail stations, car parks, shopping areas and businesses in Manchester city center.

Howard Hartley, TfGM Head of Bus, remarked:

“We are committed to investing in buses with low carbon emissions and strong environmental credentials as part of a collective effort with operators to make Greater Manchester’s bus network – which caters for 216 million journeys a year – as green as possible.”

“We have been happy with the performance and reliability of our current buses, and the support we have received from Optare, so are pleased to be expanding the number of hybrid vehicles within our fleet.”

John Horn, Sales Director at Optare, commented:

“Optare has had a strong start to 2014, so we are particularly pleased to announce another high value order. Transport for Greater Manchester’s decision to invest in more of Optare’s advanced hybrid and electric powered buses is a great testament to the reliability and cost effectiveness of our vehicles.”

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5 Comments on "Manchester Orders Its First Electric Buses"

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Optional 50 kW charger or 2×7.5 kW onboard charger seems a bit questionable if you have about 1 kWh / km. 90 kWh won’t last a full buisness day either?

The hybrid version is using a 0.5 kWh supercapacitor. That’s not that big…

http://www.optare.com/images/brochures/versa%20spec.pdf

I have the feeling, that those are not the best electric buses out there.

The supercapacitor will just provide regenerative braking.
It is a very mild hybrid.

For the EV congested inner city routes in the UK should be fine.
You don’t get very far at all quickly, and temperatures in the UK are rarely severe enough to greatly restrict range.

The diesel engine seems to be attached to a generator and there are two electric motors for movement. So I would guess it is a very short term buffer for the generator aswell as regenerative braking of course.

90 kWh are more than enough for a single round-trip, but then you would need faster recharging to keep the breaks between two rounds reasonably short. I doubt those kind of duty cycles are attractive in long term.

You may be thinking in terms of US city mileage.
In the UK with traffic moving at 10-15mph or so, not counting bus stops, then they are going to get way, way more than one trip out of the bus.

No, I’m not from the US 😉
Aerodynamics are not as relevant at bus city speeds. Driving around empty would be far more benficial. The buses I have heard of in Europe actually need a bit more then 1 kWh/km. For example the BYD ebus with a capacity of 324 kWh and 250 km range. You will get a little bit better with lightweight buses, but not too much.