Ireland’s first all-electric town bus service launched in Athlone with BYD ADL Enviro200EV fleet
Larbert and Iver, United Kingdom – 23rd January 2023: Alexander Dennis (Alexander Dennis Limited, ADL) and BYD UK jointly announced today that their electric vehicle partnership has supplied 11 BYD ADL Enviro200EV electric single deck buses for Ireland’s first all-electric town bus service in Athlone, County Westmeath. Procured and funded by the National Transport Authority, the buses are operated by Bus Éireann.
The new fleet will reduce carbon emissions by 400,000kg annually and means a quieter, cleaner bus service for the town. It was launched on 20th January 2023 by Ireland’s Minister for Transport Mr Eamon Ryan, TD.
The electrification of Athlone’s bus service is part of the Department of Transport’s Pathfinder Programme, a key part of the implementation of the National Sustainable Mobility Policy that sets out the government’s plan to achieve a 50% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 in the transport sector.
The zero-emission buses are the first delivery from a framework contract for up to 200 BYD ADL Enviro200EV battery-electric buses that the BYD ADL partnership, represented by Alexander Dennis as primary contractor, signed with the National Transport Authority in July 2021.
Alexander Dennis’s body engineers have tailored the buses to the specific operating needs of the NTA and Bus Éireann. The result is an approximately 12m long vehicle with two doorways and a bespoke interior that accommodates up to 73 passengers. In addition to 27 fixed seats, six tip-up seats are located within the permanent wheelchair space and the dedicated area for the accommodation of at least one unfolded pram, pushchair or buggy.
Complementing the body design is BYD’s world-leading expertise in pioneering iron-phosphate battery technology and advanced electric powertrain systems. The innovative ‘6-in-1’ controller integrates the battery, motors and motor controls, along with BYD’s highly efficient thermal battery management system, enhancing reliability, safety and range.
National Transport Authority CEO, Anne Graham, said: “The launch of these electric buses today represents a very significant milestone on the journey to a zero-emissions fleet for our town and city bus services. From today the people of Athlone will benefit from buses that are cleaner, quieter, more comfortable and more attractive. Athlone will be the first service in Ireland to be delivered entirely by electric buses, and we should not underestimate the significance of that for this town and for public transport in general. The experience we gain here with our colleagues in Bus Éireann will doubtless stand us in good stead as NTA rolls out similar programmes in Dublin and in other cities and towns in the months and years ahead.”
Bus Éireann Chief Executive Officer, Stephen Kent, said: “We are excited to be operating the fleet, which will deliver a more modern, sustainable and comfortable service and provide an enhanced customer experience for passengers. The smoother and quieter ride is welcome, as is improved access for persons with reduced mobility. The new fleet in Athlone is a particularly welcome development for Bus Éireann as we continue on our journey to become one of the most sustainable national transport companies in Europe. The operational experience will be invaluable as we expand electric vehicles to other urban services.”
Alexander Dennis Regional Sales Manager for Ireland, Lee Gibson, said: “We are delighted to work with the National Transport Authority and Bus Éireann in leading the transition to zero-emission mobility in Ireland with our battery-electric buses. We have built on the joint experience with our plug-in hybrid double deckers to ensure Athlone’s new buses are perfectly tailored to the requirements of passengers and the Bus Éireann team that operates them, and we look forward to rolling out this winning combination in other Irish towns and cities.”
Frank Thorpe, Managing Director, BYD UK, said: “BYD, in collaboration with Alexander Dennis, is proud to support this inspiring programme in Athlone which sets an excellent example for other towns and cities to commit to zero-emission mobility. Through innovative world-leading technology, BYD is dedicated to empowering battery-electric public bus services, providing safe and reliable sustainable mobility solutions to reduce air pollution. We hope BYD ADL electric buses will encourage more people to use eco-friendly public bus services in Athlone, and other parts of Ireland.”
Leveraging 450 years of combined experience, NFI is leading the electrification of mass mobility around the world. With zero-emission buses and coaches, infrastructure, and technology, NFI meets today’s urban demands for scalable smart mobility solutions. Together, NFI is enabling more livable cities through connected, clean, and sustainable transportation.
With 7,500 team members in nine countries, NFI is a leading global bus manufacturer of mass mobility solutions under the brands New Flyer® (heavy-duty transit buses), MCI® (motor coaches), Alexander Dennis (single and double-deck buses), Plaxton (motor coaches), ARBOC® (low-floor cutaway and medium-duty buses), and NFI Parts™. NFI currently offers the widest range of sustainable drive systems available, including zero-emission electric (trolley, battery, and fuel cell), natural gas, electric hybrid, and clean diesel. In total, NFI supports its installed base of over 105,000 buses and coaches around the world. NFI’s common shares trade on the Toronto Stock Exchange (“TSX”) under the symbol NFI and its convertible unsecured debentures trade on the TSX under the symbol NFI.DB. News and information is available at nfigroup.com, newflyer.com, mcicoach.com, nfi.parts, alexander-dennis.com, arbocsv.com, and carfaircomposites.com.
About Alexander Dennis
Alexander Dennis (Alexander Dennis Limited, “ADL”) is a global leader in the design and manufacture of double deck buses and is also the UK’s largest bus and coach manufacturer. Alexander Dennis offers single and double deck vehicles under the brands of Alexander Dennis and Plaxton, and has over 31,000 vehicles in service in the UK, Ireland, Europe, Hong Kong, Singapore, New Zealand, Mexico, Canada and the United States. Further information is available at alexander-dennis.com.
BYD Company Ltd. is one of China’s largest privately-owned enterprises. Since its inception in 1995, the company quickly developed solid expertise in rechargeable batteries and became a relentless advocate of sustainable development, successfully expanding its renewable energy solutions globally with operations in over 50 countries and regions. Its creation of a Zero Emissions Energy Ecosystem – comprising affordable solar power generation, reliable energy storage and cutting-edge electrified transportation – has made it an industry leader in the energy and transportation sectors. BYD is listed on the Hong Kong and Shenzhen Stock Exchanges. More information on the company can be found at www.byd.com.
About BYD UK
BYD UK was established in London, UK in March 2013 and moved to Iver, Buckinghamshire, England in June 2018 to further develop its business. It is primarily engaged in providing British customers with a series of new energy buses together with interrelated after sales service. Its main focus is to provide UK customers with BYD new energy solutions, including electric vehicles, rechargeable batteries, solar panels, energy storage systems, rail transit and other new energy products, as well as related after-sales services.
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