Stagecoach Highlands has launched its 25 Yutong E10 battery-electric buses onto the Inverness city network, converting all of those routes to zero-emission operation. The same achievement will follow in Dunfermline and Perth “in the coming months,” the group says.
£10.8 million has been invested in the Yutong fleet for Inverness, supported by a £5.8 million grant from the first round of the Scottish Zero Emission Bus (ScotZEB) challenge fund. The buses use overnight charging, with Stagecoach utilising 100% renewable electricity across its business. Testing of the buses had started in January.
Minister for Transport Jenny Gilruth (pictured, second from left) attended the launch of the buses, describing the work by Stagecoach Highlands as “a welcome commitment to help meeting Scotland’s world leading climate change targets.”
Adds Stagecoach Highlands Managing Director David Beaton (pictured, left): “I am incredibly proud to be able to say that we are now operating the UK’s first fully electric city bus network in Inverness. It is a challenging time for the industry, and we still have some way to go, but we are absolutely committed to improving public transport for our customers across the Highlands.”
Pelican Bus and Coach has supplied the E10 fleet in further success for Yutong zero-emission products in Scotland. Head of Yutong UK Ian Downie (pictured, centre) says: “We are honoured that Stagecoach has selected our market-leading single-decks for the UK’s first fully electric city bus network.
“Our tried, tested and proven product will bring a new standard for public transport due to its customer centric features, such as full air-conditioning.”
Stagecoach Highlands will also shortly take delivery of 40 new diesel buses for its Aviemore and Tain operations. When all investment in new fleet and infrastructure is combined, the business will spend £40m in 2022/23.