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Tranzit electric bus making waves in New Plymouth

Since Tranzit Coachlines Taranaki launched its new electric bus into New Plymouth earlier this year, positive benefits are already being felt within the community.

Since introducing New Zealand’s first electric bus in 2018, Tranzit Coachlines Taranaki has continued to make strides in the electric bus sphere.

Its most recent addition, launched in New Plymouth in March this year, has seen positive benefits for the community and environment.

Launched after Taranaki Regional Council secured funding from Waka Kotahi/NZTA’s Climate Emergency Response Fund, the electric bus replaced a diesel bus on the Citylink public transport network.

Since its introduction, it has travelled 7,000 kms across various routes in New Plymouth, already reduced fuel consumption by 2,400 litres, and avoided 6.2 tonnes of CO2 entering the atmosphere.

Tranzit Coachlines driver Fran Andrews says the bus is a great addition to the city’s public transport fleet.

“Since we introduced this bus into the network here in March, I’ve really enjoyed driving it because it is so quiet and smooth,” Andrews says.

“I’ve also enjoyed seeing the response from passengers who often comment to me on how pleasurable it is to ride in. They also like the little extras the bus has, such as being able to charge their phones as they travel.”

The electric bus has a 321kW battery, providing more than 300kms of range on a single charge. It is charged overnight in Tranzit’s New Plymouth depot, using net-zero electricity from Meridian Energy.

It has capacity for 25 seated and 30 standing passengers, along with two wheelchair spaces.

“Annually, we expect this electric bus to do 68,000kms saving more than 23,000 litres of diesel and 61 tonnes of CO2 which will help improve air quality here in New Plymouth,” says Tranzit Coachlines Taranaki manager Colin Shotter.

“The feedback we are seeing from our passengers is positive. We regularly hear how smooth and quiet their ride is; that there is more room for wheelchairs and prams and luggage and that the seats are more comfortable.

“All these benefits combined, we hope, will help increase patronage.”

Earlier this year, Tranzit, in partnership with Horizons Regional Council, introduced the country’s first 100 per cent electric bus fleet with 43 electric buses operating in Palmerston North.

This continues Tranzit’s commitment to decarbonising its bus fleet to help reduce emissions from land transport.

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