Dublin begins testing first batch of battery electric buses

Posted: 24 July 2023 | | 1 comment

The arrival of nine out of the 120 ordered vehicles marks a crucial milestone in Dublin’s ambitious plan to replace a third of the city’s urban bus fleet with zero-emission technologies within the next two years.

Dublin begins testing first batch of battery electric buses

Credit: Transport for Ireland

Transport for Ireland has announced that driver training, vehicle testing and route piloting has commenced in Dublin with the arrival of the city’s first battery electric buses. Manufacturer Wrightbus has delivered nine buses out of the 120 ordered by the National Transport Authority (NTA) in June 2022. The testing and familiarisation process with drivers from the Phibsboro and Summerhill depots will continue throughout August and September 2023.

The electric fleet’s range is being evaluated on various routes, including C1/C2, 123, 15A/B, 122 and 9. Over the next few months, a total of 760 drivers will undergo training. The buses are being charged using the chargers already in place for the hybrid diesel-electric buses.

Furthermore, NTA has also approved the ordering of an additional 210 electric buses to be delivered in 2024, in addition to the 120 ordered in 2022 and the 91 ordered in December 2022. This will bring the total number of electric buses to 421 within the next two years, constituting about a third of the urban bus fleet as zero-emission vehicles.

NTA CEO Anne Graham said: “It’s very encouraging to see the arrival of these buses and to see them out on the streets for training and testing. There is no doubt that people are looking to us to provide better, more sustainable transport alternatives in all areas, and it is incumbent on us as an Authority to respond to that demand in a positive way. In so doing, we will reduce the need for personal vehicles, making the quality of the air we breathe healthier for everyone.”

Taskforce launched to drive zero-emission technologies in rural bus services

Minister for Transport Eamon Ryan said: “These buses are a critical component of the effort to transition our fleet to zero emissions and to make public transport more sustainable than ever. But they will also offer a much-improved customer experience, and as somebody who had an opportunity to travel on one last week, I was very impressed with how quiet and comfortable the journey was.”

Dublin Bus CEO Billy Hann said: “We are in the midst of an extensive training and piloting programme, which is progressing well, and I am delighted to report the feedback on the new bus from our drivers and operations team has been overwhelmingly positive. This ground-breaking project fills us with great excitement as Dublin Bus embraces the opportunity to transform public transport and pave the way for a greener and cleaner future for generations to come.”

A depot electrification project is underway to install electric chargers in Summerhill and Phibsboro depots for the new electric fleet. The plan is to gradually introduce the electric buses into operational service throughout the year, replacing diesel vehicles over a three-month period.

One response to “Dublin begins testing first batch of battery electric buses”

  1. Alkè says:

    The introduction of Dublin’s first battery electric buses marks a significant step towards sustainable public transportation. With the arrival of nine electric buses and plans for 421 electric buses in the next two years, Transport for Ireland is taking commendable strides towards reducing emissions and improving air quality. The testing and familiarization process with drivers will ensure a smooth transition to zero-emission vehicles. Embracing electric buses is a positive response to the demand for greener transport alternatives, making Dublin’s streets cleaner and healthier for everyone.

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