London tourists may soon hop on electric buses

Equipmake will equip the capital's iconic tourist buses with electric drives. Their new client Big Bus Tours expects to improve the sightseeing experience as much as the air quality. (UPDATE BELOW)

The UK-based company announced the new deal with sightseeing company Big Bus Tours today. Equipmake will now retrofit ten Hop-On double-deckers with zero-emission drivetrain technology in the British capital.

The vehicles in line for electrification are Ankai open top sightseeing buses and a common sight on the streets of London.

Big Bus Tours opted for the 327 kWh battery, providing around 120 mile daily range, according to Equipmake. The first vehicle will enter service in Q1 2024.

Gerry Price, Executive Vice President at Big Bus Tours, said the company would play its part in “improving the capital’s air quality and giving the hundreds of thousands of tourists who use our sightseeing services every year an even more enjoyable experience.“

Ian Foley, CEO, Equipmake, added, the company would also make “significant operating cost savings over the purchase of a new electric bus”.

Equipmake specialises in BEV conversions. Clients include First Bus and Westway Coaches. In May this year, the company signed a tech licensing deal with Sona Comstar to manufacture and sell the technology in Southeast Asia. The company has since expanded into providing electric drive systems for small aircraft.

Update 11 January 2024

Equipmake has doubled its fleet EV repowering agreement with Big Bus Tours to 20 buses. Following on from an initial contract with the sightseeing company to repower 10 double-deck, open-top buses with its electric drivetrain technology, Equipmake has now expanded the agreement to a fleet of 20 vehicles.

“Our industry-leading integrated zero emission drivetrain system continues to impress new and existing customers, as evidenced by the extension of this contract with Big Bus Tours,” said Ian Foley, CEO of Equipmake. “This agreement will double the size of its fully electric, repowered fleet, demonstrating both the quality and efficacy of our state-of-the-art technology, and the level of investment being made across the transport sector as it moves towards a net zero future.”,, (both update)


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