Wellington Scoop

Tranzit gets $484,000 grant to convert two double-deckers from diesel to electric

News from Tranzit Group
Tranzit Group has been granted almost $500k from the Low Emission Vehicles Contestable Fund, which is administered by the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority (EECA). The award-winning bus and tourism company, which has been pioneering electric bus technology since 2014, received $484,708 to convert two double-deck diesel buses to electric. It is likely that the two buses will be running in Wellington.

Tranzit’s Transport and Operations Director Keven Snelgrove says the conversion of the public transport double-deck buses to electric will be a New Zealand first.

Keven also says the announcement is a clear demonstration of the company’s commitment to a sustainable future and building a modern and reliable electric bus fleet. This fleet currently includes 280 Euro 6 diesel buses, which meet the highest global emission standards, and 11 electric buses, 10 of which are double deck EVs that have been running successfully in Wellington since 2018. A further 31 more new double deck EVs will incrementally be added to its Wellington fleet, with the final vehicle to be delivered by September 2022.

“While Tranzit Group operates a fleet of green buses, we also operate in excess of 100 BCI diesel single and double deck buses in New Zealand. They are the workhorses of public transport in our major cities of Auckland and Wellington but this grant from EECA means we can successfully convert two of these double deck diesel buses to electric, which will be a New Zealand first,” says Keven.

“This also highlights the option to explore fully electrifying our fleet of BCI diesel buses bringing even more environmental benefits to the communities we operate and live in.”

Tranzit was one of 24 projects that received funding from EECA’s Low Emission Vehicles Contestable Fund. In the recent announcement by Energy and Resources Minister Dr Megan Woods, she said decarbonising the transport sector represents a huge opportunity to reduce the country’s emissions, and enabling people to shift to a different transport mode plays a part in that.

It is not the first time Tranzit has received funding from EECA. In 2017, Tranzit partnered with Auckland University of Technology (AUT) to do a joint application to Low Emission Vehicles Contestable Fund. This was successful and led to the development and Kiwi build of New Zealand’s first commercially operated 100% battery powered electric bus called EV1. EV1 is now part of AUT’s shuttle fleet, replacing its diesel equivalent and servicing the North-City Campus and South-City Campus bus routes.

“We’ve been pioneering electric bus technology in New Zealand for several years now and we continue to look for new ways to innovate, including repowering our diesel fleet. We know the environmental and social benefits for EVs are well documented but if we take one step back and look at the big picture here, we want to help improve the quality of life for people, improve the air quality in the cities and regions we operate in and provide better service for our passengers,” says Keven.

Tranzit’s specialist team of EV engineers and mechanics will begin the conversion in late September. It is expected these buses will operate urban services under Tranzit’s urban company brand name, Tranzurban.

1 comment:

  1. greenwelly, 4. September 2020, 14:48

    To be honest I’m not holding my breath on this … This fund announced in January 2018 that Tranzit were granted $397,500
    “to invest in permanent “drive through” opportunity fast charge stations for buses at the Wellington Railway Station bus interchange. Four buses will be able to be charged simultaneously.”
    It never happened.

    Then in August 2018 NZ Bus were granted $763,668 to “install charging infrastructure at two bus depots to support a significant fleet of over 50 pure battery electric buses
    That never happened either…