The bus revolution will be televised

11 August 2022 #Uncategorised

This week, bus manufacturing was the focus of primetime mainstream television, as BBC2’s Inside The Factory: XL visited the Alexander Dennis factory near Scarborough to see how electric double decker buses are made.

It’s great to see not only UK advanced manufacturing, but also bus manufacturing, receiving the appreciation it deserves for the crucial role it has and will continue to play in the British economy and society.

While the chassis being built was kept in mystery, we saw that each week 57,000 rivets, 1,000 miles of cables and 500 litres of paint went into building 25 double decker buses.

700 people are employed at the Eastfield site, similar to the numbers employed at Wrightbus and Switch Mobility.

Innovation is accelerating in the bus industry, with hydrogen fuel cell electric buses already up and running. Translink recently ordered 20 from Wrightbus and Mersey Travel is due to take delivery of 20 from Alexander Dennis in the coming months.

The Department for Transport’s ZEBRA fund is also in the process of putting more than 100 hydrogen buses on the road over the next couple of years.

Automated driving is another area in which the bus sector is leading, with a number of level four automated buses soon to be delivered to Edinburgh.

These buses will be self-driving under certain circumstances in the Scottish capital, picking up passengers with a driver sat at the controls ready to take control when needed.

With zero emission powertrains and automation starting to make their mark, the bus industry is firmly at the forefront of the technological revolution. Personally, I cannot wait to ride one to see and experience how they work.

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