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Equipmake delivers 12 upgraded electric buses to First York

Equipmake has delivered a fleet of 12 electric buses to UK-based bus operator First York, marking an important step in the city’s efforts to improve urban air quality.

The buses, now in full service across York, have been upgraded with Equipmake’s Zero-Emission Drivetrain (ZED) technology, after converting Optare Versa deck models.

The upgraded fleet now has a 274kWh battery which provides a range of 150 miles in all UK weather conditions.

The latest milestone comes after a successful trial with a prototype car. The engineering teams at First York and Equipmake were able to fine-tune the performance before releasing all the ships.

These buses are now fitted according to the specific needs of the operator, with simulations carried out to ensure that the highest level of battery power is selected, offering driving ranges of 150 to 250 miles.

First York’s engineering manager, Stuart Eyre, said: “Equipmake’s renewable energy technology is a key step in our transition to a fully electric fleet in York, continuing to help improve air quality in the city and supporting First Bus’ national goal of a zero-emission fleet -2035.”

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Equipmake said its ZED technology is suitable for single and double-decker buses and includes in-house power electronics for the electric motor, as well as an inverter, and the latest lithium-ion batteries.

In addition, the system’s advanced water-glycol cooling circuit helps regulate temperature and provides internal heat by retaining heat energy.

At the end of the duty cycle, the buses can be charged again overnight at the depot using the CSS DC charging point.

Upgrading existing buses with Equipmake technology is expected to provide significant cost and environmental benefits.

In March 2023, Equipmake entered into a partnership with Westway Coach Company to support the electrification of its fleet.

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