Equipmake Partners with Golden Tours to Electrify London Sightseeing Buses

Equipmake Secures Fleet Repowering Contract with Golden Tours

Equipmake, a leader in electrification engineering, has signed a new contract with Golden Tours to repower an additional ten Volvo B5 tour buses from diesel to electric, using its innovative Zero-Emission Drivetrain (ZED) technology. This follows an initial £2 million order in February, underscoring the strengthening relationship between the two companies and the growing demand for sustainable transport solutions in the capital.

Golden Tours, established in 1984, specialises in London sightseeing and UK tourism, offering high-quality tours around the capital and to iconic locations such as Stonehenge and Bath. The company is a key partner of the globally recognised Gray Line Association and Warner Bros. Studio Tour London. The conversion of these buses is expected to commence in the coming months.

Ian Foley, CEO of Equipmake, commented on the contract: "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. This new contract is testament to the quality and reliability of our products and reflects an increasing move in the sector towards 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.”

Mikesh Palan, Managing Director at Golden Tours, echoed this sentiment: “By extending our relationship with Equipmake, Golden Tours is ensuring its operations are as sustainable as possible. 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. We look forward to bringing these electric buses into service and continuing to put sustainability at the forefront of our business strategy.”

Equipmake’s ZED is a modular and scalable repowering solution, applicable to both single and double-deck buses. It features an in-house developed electric motor, inverter, and power electronics, combined with the latest lithium-ion batteries. One of the most innovative aspects of the ZED is its patented ultra-efficient thermal management system, which maintains the battery pack, motor, and inverter at optimal temperatures, maximising vehicle range. An advanced water-glycol cooling circuit also provides interior heating during cold conditions using captured thermal energy.

The environmental benefits of Equipmake’s technology are significant. Repurposing existing bus chassis and bodies with the ZED saves approximately 90 tonnes of CO2 compared to manufacturing a new double-deck bus. Additionally, each conversion costs less than half the price of a new electric bus, providing significant cost savings for operators over the vehicle's operational life cycle, which typically spans more than 14 years.

Equipmake Partners with Golden Tours to Electrify London Sightseeing Buses
June 3, 2024

Q&A: Equipmake and Golden Tours Electric Bus Repowering Deal

What is the main news about Equipmake and Golden Tours?Equipmake has signed a contract with Golden Tours to repower ten Volvo B5 tour buses from diesel to electric, using its Zero-Emission Drivetrain (ZED) technology.

How many buses are involved in the new contract?The new contract involves the repowering of ten Volvo B5 London tour buses in the Golden Tours fleet.

What technology will be used to repower the buses?The buses in the Golden Tours fleet will be repowered using Equipmake’s Zero-Emission Drivetrain (ZED) technology.

What is Equipmake's Zero-Emission Drivetrain (ZED) technology?Equipmake's Zero-Emission Drivetrain (ZED) technology is a modular and scalable repowering solution featuring an in-house developed electric motor, inverter, power electronics, and the latest lithium-ion batteries.

What are the benefits of Equipmake’s Zero-Emission Drivetrain (ZED) technology?Equipmake’s Zero-Emission Drivetrain (ZED) technology offers significant environmental benefits, such as saving approximately 90 tonnes of CO2 by repurposing existing bus chassis and bodies. It also provides cost savings, as each conversion costs less than half the price of a new electric bus. Additionally, it maximises vehicle range with an ultra-efficient thermal management system.

What is the significance of this contract for Equipmake?This contract represents a successive order following a £2 million initial order in February, highlighting the growing relationship between Equipmake and Golden Tours and the increasing demand for sustainable transport solutions within their fleet.

What does Golden Tours do?Golden Tours specialises in London sightseeing and UK tourism, offering high-quality tours around the capital and to iconic UK locations such as Stonehenge and Bath. They are a key partner of the Gray Line Association and Warner Bros. Studio Tour London.

What did Ian Foley, CEO of Equipmake, say about the contract?Ian Foley expressed pleasure at the substantial commitment from Golden Tours, citing the quality and reliability of Equipmake’s products and the move towards sustainable alternatives in the fleet sector.

What are the operational benefits mentioned by Mikesh Palan, Managing Director at Golden Tours?Mikesh Palan highlighted the sustainability, cost, and efficiency advantages of Equipmake’s Zero-Emission Drivetrain (ZED) technology, stating it will enhance services for thousands of passengers and support Golden Tours' sustainability strategy.

When is the delivery of the repowered buses in the Golden Tours fleet expected to begin?Delivery of the repowered buses in the Golden Tours fleet is expected to commence in the coming months.

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