Electric bus trial results released

Released 30/09/2019

Results of a 12-month trial of alternative fuel buses in the Territory will help form work on a plan to transition to a Zero-Emission fleet by 2040 at the latest.

In a speech to the Australian Transport Research Forum, ACT Minister for Transport, Chris Steel, said this trial was part of the ACT Government’s plan to transition to a zero emission vehicles fleet and help ensure Canberra grows into a highly connected, sustainable and liveable city.

"Once the ACT has reached 100 percent renewable electricity, transport will be the largest source of emissions in the territory," Minister Steel said.

"The ACT is playing a leading role in managing climate change and this includes transitioning to a zero emissions public transport fleet by 2040.

"As we plan for a zero-emissions transport fleet, we've been trialling electric buses to test the technology to make sure it meets our network needs and can move Canberrans around efficiently and reliably."

Data was collected during the trial through independent performance testing of electric, hybrid and diesel buses as well as on-board operational data from data loggers installed in the trial buses. We also conducted driver and passenger surveys.

"Overall the fully-electric buses performed best in relation to environmental emissions, energy efficiency, and whole of life economic costs," said Minister Steel.

The diesel buses generally performed better in relation to daily operational and financial costs and the performance of hybrid buses generally fell between the diesel and electric bus for all criteria.

Based on total monthly greenhouse gas emissions for each bus type, switching from a diesel bus to an electric buses would result in less emissions and would help us to net zero emission targets.

The diesel buses had higher passenger capacity and reliability, with lower capital costs and whole of life financial costs. However the future of diesel buses is limited due to the ACT's leading role in transitioning to a zero emissions fleet.

Importantly, passengers indicated that they were satisfied with both the hybrid and electric buses in terms of noise, smell and smoothness of travel.

"The trial has shown that zero emissions vehicles are a viable alternative for Canberra's public transport network going forward.

"The speed in which the technology has already changed since the trial, means that transit operators can have much greater confidence in newer zero emissions buses that are now emerging on the market.

"The trial results will inform the work that is already underway in the ACT to develop, plan for the infrastructure, investment and skills needed to transition to zero-emissions transport," Minister Steel said.

Summary of key results from the trial – conducted by AECOM

Criterion Scania Euro VI Diesel Carbridge Toro battery electric Volvo Hybrid Euro V
Passenger capacity 68 (48 seated) 49 – 55 (35 seated) 68 (44 seated)
Fuel energy efficiency 938.4 GJ/year 179.6 GJ/year 686.6 GJ/year
Unscheduled missed peaks 0.8% peaks/bus 35.7% peaks/bus 14.2% peaks/bus
Range 810 km 450 km 760 km
GHG (CO2) emissions 62.7 t/year 1.6t/year 51.1t/year
PM10 emissions 4.9 kg/year 4.6 kg/year 7.1 kg/year
NOx emissions 28.6 kg/year 0 kg/year 41.5 kg/year
Whole of life cost (financial)* $418,280 $545,665 $597,190
Whole of life cost (economic)* $1,002,361 $727,055 $1,089,463

*The "whole of life cost (financial)" is defined as the financial costs borne by the Territory in relation to the purchase and operation of each of the vehicles in the trial over its expected useful life (excluding labour costs). This cost is based on the purchase and operation of a single vehicle, and is not scaled to reflect the cost of operating a larger fleet of vehicles.

The "whole of life (economic) cost" is defined as the whole of life (financial) cost plus external costs, such as greenhouse gas emissions.

- Statement ends -

Section: Chris Steel, MLA | Media Releases

Media Contacts

Name Phone Mobile Email

Anton Gallacher

(02) 6205 3795

0422 574 108


«ACT Government Media Releases | «Minister Media Releases