Indian Armed Forces to add 113 electric buses to their fleet

The Indian Army will add 113 electric buses to its fleet, supporting the nation’s green initiatives. It will use the buses to transport troops in the plains and semi-hilly areas and is conducting trials for the procurement.

Image: Switch Mobility

Indian news agency ANI reports that the Indian Army’s 113 electric buses accommodate 40 people. The Indian Ministry of Defence (MoD)’s final request for proposal (RFP) for these EVs suggests that the seating capacity excludes driver and co-driver seats. Interestingly, the document also mentioned that out of the 130 electric buses, it will allocate only 60 to the Indian Army and that 46 units are for the Indian Air Force and seven are for the Indian Navy.

ANI says the new electric buses deliver a range of 250 km, in line with the technical parameters in the final RFP. Based on the proposal, they likely have permanent magnet synchronous motor(s) producing at least 200 kW and a battery pack with at least 200 kWh of energy storage capacity.

The MoD said it wants the new electric buses to possess capabilities like a minimum 65 kph top speed, 17 per cent or more gradability with a full payload, a turning circle diameter of no more than 24 metres, and 9º approach and departure angles.

The Indian Armed Forces’ current electric bus fleet includes various locally manufactured models. The latest images in the Indian media show two models, one from JBM Auto and one from Ashok Leyland’s Switch Mobility. In February, the Indian Army purchased six Eicher Skyline PRO E 9-metre electric buses from VE Commercial Vehicles, a joint venture between Volvo Group and Eicher Motors.

According to a report from The Hindu Business Line last year, the MoD may procure 423 electric motorcycles in addition to electric buses. The EVs must have an unladen weight of 130-150 kg, a top speed of at least 100 kph, and a facility for lockable and detachable side luggage boxes.


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