Hybrid Double Decker Volvo Buses Hit London Streets
The historic venue of Alexandra Palace in London provided a fitting backdrop on Tuesday 7th July for the world debut of the first of a new generation of highly fuel efficient and environmentally friendly Volvo Hybrid Double Deck buses to Arriva London.
A total of six Volvo B5L Hybrid Double Deck buses have recently entered service on Route 141 in the UK’s capital city and representatives from Volvo Bus and Arriva London, together with other stakeholders gathered to formally mark another historic occasion at the Alexandra Palace
Back in 1936 the BBC made the first public broadcast to the world of High Definition Television – then a new technology which was to subsequently become part of everyday life worldwide. More than seventy years on, hybrid technology now moves from development phase to full commercial reality, as part of the drive to deliver significant reductions in fuel consumption and emissions in the public transport arena.
The buses features the parallel hybrid I-SAM technology, developed across the entire Volvo Group. It is a hybrid in that the bus is powered by a combination of an electric motor and a diesel engine, with the system being parallel in that it can be powered by either source independently, or in combination drawing on both power sources at the same time.
The new Hybrid Double Deck buses offer savings both in terms of fuel consumption and emissions. Evidence from test tack development and in service field trials with Arriva London show significant savings in fuel consumption and carbon dioxide (C02) emissions as well as reduction in Nitrous Oxides and particulates.
The introduction of the new Volvo B5L Hybrid Double Deck bus follows hot on the heels of the introduction of the Volvo 7700 Hybrid Single Deck in May in Volvo’s home city of Gothenburg in Sweden. It is also part of an on-going programme across the entire Volvo Group, which includes Trucks, Construction Equipment as well as Buses. With longer intervals between bus stops in Gothenburg, the expected fuel savings there was 20-25%. The first months of service shows better then expected fuel savings, about 30%.
Speaking at the handover ceremony, Senior Vice President Volvo Buses Europe, Stefan Nordström said, “We are delighted to formally handover our first six Hybrid Double Deck Buses to Arriva London. The advanced parallel hybrid technology on these vehicles, unique to the Volvo Group, offers significant fuel savings and resultant C02 reductions, as well as significant air quality and noise benefits for other road users.”
He added, “The continuing trend in ever higher fuel prices means that the payback period on the incremental capital cost of this technology is being further reduced, making investment in hybrid vehicles a viable option for an ever increasing number of cities in Europe and beyond.”
Accepting delivery of the first Volvo Hybrid Double Decks, Managing Director of Arriva London Mark Yexley commented, “With the support of Transport for London, this is a pioneering project for Arriva to be involved with. These six vehicles will provide an excellent opportunity to assess the benefits and the whole life cost proposition of hybrid technology in a real life day to day operating environment.”