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City of London launching first hybrid buses

8 February 2006

Transport for London (TfL), the transit authority serving the city of London, UK, has announced the addition of six hybrid diesel-electric urban buses—the first ever such vehicles in London—to the city bus fleet. The vehicles are introduced as part of an ongoing program by TfL to test innovative technology and further reduce emissions from its bus fleet. This is the first of a number of hybrid systems to be evaluated by London Buses, said TfL.

The new hybrid buses, built by the Wright Group, are expected to be cleaner, quieter and use 40% less fuel than a standard diesel bus, thus leading to a reduction in CO2 emissions. The six hybrid vehicles will be monitored and assessed over the coming months for performance, reliability and durability. If they prove successful, London Buses will encourage their wider introduction into the fleet.

The Wright hybrids use a series hybrid drive by Enova Systems. A 336 V battery pack provides power to the wheels via a 120 kW electric motor. The battery pack is charged by a 1.9 liter Euro 4 diesel—a small engine which would normally be found in a family car. The buses have a top speed of 40-45 mph.

London Buses operates a fleet of 8,000 buses, around 60% of which are Euro III vehicles, and the remainder meeting Euro II standards. All buses have been fitted with particulate filters.

Source: Transport for London