Equipmake Agrees to Electric Bus Repower Contract with Golden Tours

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Electrification engineering specialist Equipmake has secured a contract with Golden Tours to repower a further 10 Volvo B5 London tour buses using its in-house developed Zero-Emission Drivetrain (ZED).

This contract follows a 2 million pound initial order in February from Golden Tours, illustrating the scaling of initial customer relationships as product is delivered and as Equipmake’s customers derive the benefits of electrification within their fleets.

Established in 1984, Golden Tours specializes in London sightseeing and United Kingdom tourism, providing tours around the city and day trips to UK locations such as Stonehenge and Bath.  Golden Tours has an established partnership with sightseeing tour company Gray Line Association and is a preferred partner of Warner Bros. Studio Tour London. Equipmake expects to begin delivery of these 10 repowered buses over the coming months.

“Golden Tours is a leading tour and activity company in London and across the UK, and I am pleased to announce it has followed its February order with another substantial commitment for Equipmake-repowered buses,” says Ian Foley, CEO of Equipmake. “This new contract is testament to the quality and reliability of our products and reflects an increasing move in the sector toward sustainable operational alternatives. Equipmake’s bus repowering provides an economically compelling alternative to purchasing new electric vehicles, and we are delighted that we can support Golden Tours as it works to make its fleet sustainable.”

“By extending our relationship with Equipmake, Golden Tours is ensuring its operations are as sustainable as possible,” adds Mikesh Palan, managing director of Golden Tours. “We offer bus services to the UK’s most famous and iconic locations, and by partnering with Equipmake, we will enhance our services for thousands of passengers a day. The cutting-edge capabilities of Equipmake’s Zero-Emission Drivetrain and its many cost, sustainability and efficiency advantages highlighted clear benefits of this continued partnership.”

Equipmake’s ZED, which will be integrated in each Golden Tours bus, is a modular and scalable repowering solution designed for both single- and double-deck applications. The technology features Equipmake’s in-house-developed electric motor, inverter and power electronics, which are combined with the latest lithium-ion batteries.

One of the most innovative features of the ZED is its patented, ultra-efficient thermal management system, which maintains the battery pack, motor and inverter at an optimal temperature, helping to maximize vehicle range.

An advanced water-glycol cooling circuit brings another benefit by providing interior heating during cold conditions with captured thermal energy. Once the battery has been depleted after a duty cycle, it can be recharged at the depot via a CCS DC charging point.

Equipmake’s technology can prevent 90 tonnes of CO2 from being emitted by repurposing the existing chassis and body, rather than producing an entirely new double-deck bus. Each conversion costs less than half the price of a new electric bus, and with most buses in service for more than 14 years, operators can save significantly by repowering their buses halfway through the operational life cycle.

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