Wrightbus’s StreetDeck is the most efficient BEV bus in the world

Ballymena firm ‘has the best brains in the business when it comes to technology’

By Claire Cartmill
Monday, 9th May 2022, 5:00 pm

Wrightbus, already leading the world with its pioneering hydrogen technology, has revealed that its rapid-charge StreetDeck Electroliner is the most efficient double deck battery-electric bus in the world.

Official assessments undertaken at UTAC using the ZEMO-accredited Ultra Low Emission Bus (ULEB) test showed that the Ballymena firm’s StreetDeck Electroliner achieved a result of 0.69 kWh/km.

This is around half the energy consumed by its closest BEV double deck UK rival and significantly better than all other BEV single deck bus results published on the ZEMO website.

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StreetDeck Electroliner is the most efficient double deck battery-electric bus in the world

Not only is it more energy-efficient, but according to ULEB calculations, the StreetDeck Electroliner also produces an impressive 86% less CO2 per km than the ZEMO Euro6 Diesel baseline.

The ULEB tests are carried out on a four wheel rolling dyno at UTAC using the UK Bus Drive Cycle (UKBC) which is designed to combine inner city, outer city and higher speed intercity driving. The chamber is set at a 10oC ambient temperature and the upper and lower saloon must achieve 17oC (plus/minus 2oC) to reflect UK average temperatures.

Energy savings compared to the equivalent StreetDeck Ultroliner ultra-low diesel bus mean the StreetDeck Electroliner is £14,500 cheaper to run a year (based on today’s subsidised diesel price vs today’s electricity price over annual distances of 80,000kms per annum).

The StreetDeck Electroliner - which was the first ever BEV from Wrightbus - offers the perfect combination of range and efficiency, maximising power and offering class-leading recharge times.

Utilising a French battery pack which delivers 454kWh and a 200-mile range, the Electroliner will recharge in two hours 45 minutes and cope with most routes, whether urban or rural.

Nor has the bus compromised on layout or capacity, with batteries efficiently stored around the bus to ensure passenger comfort is not compromised.

Founded in 1946, Wrightbus has been at the forefront of public transport for 76 years.

Rescued from administration by green entrepreneur Jo Bamford in October 2019, the company has since gone from strength to strength, taking staff numbers from 56 to more than 900 and doubling output at its Ballymena-based headquaters. And with zero-emission vehicles making up 70% of production this year, it is truly leading the way in green transport.

CEO Buta Atwal said: “It’s phenomenal news that the StreetDeck Electroliner has officially been shown to be the world’s most efficient BEV bus. We’ve always known that we had a market-leading product so to have it proven at UTAC is incredibly satisfying. We have already gained a strong reputation for our hydrogen double deck but we want to lead the world in zero-emissions full stop.

“Wrightbus has the best brains in the business when it comes to technology and our StreetDeck Electroliner puts us squarely at the front of the pack. We haven’t weighed the bus down with a high battery volume just so we can say it’s got the most power or range; instead, we’ve made it the most efficient vehicle on the road by combining optimum power with a class-leading rapid charge, meaning our electric bus spends more time on the road than any other.”

A deal to supply 80 of the buses to Translink made them the first operator to have the vehicles in service when they started carrying passengers in March this year.

Ian Campbell, director of service operations, added: “This is a very exciting time in public transport, as we start to realise our ambitious plans to transform public transport and decarbonise our fleet. These 80 new zero emission double decker electric buses are already making a real positive impression on the streets of Belfast as the start of a smarter move to innovative, clean transport for the City.

“Energy efficiency is important to us as an operator, as it helps optimise vehicle range and running costs as we transform transport in Northern Ireland for a greener, healthier recovery.”

Ballymena-based Wrightbus is in discussions with operators from the USA, Australia, South America and the Far East as authorities race to hit net zero targets.