Vehicle electrification firm Equipmake has partnered with coachbuilding company Beulas to develop a fully electric double-decker bus.
The ‘Jewel E’ bus features a range of up to 250 miles of range, making it the longest of any electric double-decker in the world, according to the two brands.
The bus is fitted with a British-built electric powertrain designed and developed at Equipmake’s facility in Norfolk, with the body produced by Beulas in Girona, Spain.
Equipmake and Beulas say the Jewel E is a cost-effective and highly efficient electric double-decker bus that will help to reduce local emissions in urban environments, improve air quality and reduce running costs for operators.
It will also help meet ever-increasing enormous demand, according to the two companies, with the global electric bus market expected to accelerate from 300,000 vehicles per annum to one million by 2030.
Set to be manufactured in 2022 at an all-new facility in Norfolk, the Jewel E will help the UK Government achieve its target of introducing at least 4,000 more British-built zero-emission buses into the UK market by 2024, through its Bus Back Better national strategy.
The bus is powered by a range of battery pack options which can reach 543kWh, producing maximum torque of 3,500Nm at just 1,000rpm and offering maximum power of 400kW. The battery is the largest of any single axle double-decker electric bus in the world and enables the Jewel E to achieve a maximum range of up to 250 miles.
Jewel E is the first EV bus to meet the latest Transport for London (TfL) bus safety standard specifications and requirements for 2024 and has been specifically designed for operation in both London and the surrounding UK provinces.
Testing of Jewel E begins in Q4 2021 with in-service trials expected to take place in Q1 2022. Manufacture and sales of Jewel E will begin in 2022.
Ian Foley, managing director of Equipmake said: “Improving urban air quality is a global problem. At the same time, operators want vehicles that are cost-effective and highly efficient, while Governments and local bodies need bus manufacturers to bring advanced technology to market quickly. Equipmake has taken all of this into account and the result is our innovative new EV double-decker, Jewel E.
“Featuring our cutting-edge ZED powertrain, it has up to 250 miles electric range, yet is cost-effective too. Set to be built at an all-new manufacturing facility near to our home in Snetterton, Norfolk, it will bring new jobs to the local area and has the potential to play a crucial role in supporting the Government’s commitment to introduce 4,000 EV buses in the coming three years. What’s more it’s also the first EV bus to meet TfL’s tough 2024 regulations too. And with demand increasing globally for electric buses, we believe it provides the right solution both nationally and internationally.”
Dolors Beulas, managing director at Beulas, added: “We are delighted to be working with Equipmake on this innovative project. Its Zero Emission Drivetrain is state-of-the-art, offering exceptional efficiency yet is cost-effective too.
“Beulas is a leader in passenger transportation in Europe, and with Jewel E, we are further consolidating our position, launching a cutting edge zero-emission bus that has huge potential to improve urban air quality.”