Kleanbus unveils diesel to electric repower platform
Bus repower company Kleanbus is revealing the first images of its advanced modular platform technology. Its system is designed to turn any bus, whether single- or double-decker, from ICE to electric quickly and cost-effectively.
According to Kleanbus, replacing a diesel engine or hybrid powertrain from an existing bus with an electric powertrain is the fastest and most cost-effective method to transition the UK bus fleet to zero-emission.
Joe Tighe, Co-Founder and CEO of Kleanbus said: “With 97% of UK buses powered by diesel engines that emit large amounts of carbon, oxides of nitrogen, and particulate matter – and a staggering 35,000 of them on the road – the country faces a major challenge to rapidly decarbonise this vital transport sector and is struggling to move quickly enough.
“Replacing these vehicles with new electric buses is very expensive for private companies and government subsidies will take many years given fleet turnover rates. Kleanbus offers a fast and efficient way towards zero-emissions, making buses cleaner, quieter, more comfortable, and more valuable assets for operators.”
Combining proven and fully-warranted electric powertrain components from leading Tier 1 suppliers with Kleanbus’ own integration technology and proprietary software, the company’s platform system is technology agnostic. The company describes it as nimble and adaptable. This approach means Kleanbus can use the very latest componentry, enabling it to leverage a wide variety of batteries and motors, creating purpose-built e-powertrains tailored exactly to an operator’s needs.
The e-motors used by Kleanbus also do not have permanent magnets, so use no rare earth materials at all, which brings with it environmental benefits.
From its facility based in the east of England, the Kleanbus repower programme consists of a full evaluation of the vehicle, removal of its diesel engine and all associated ICE components, scanning and prototyping of the vehicle’s interior, design of a bespoke platform, installation of a new e-drive, build, full testing process and final certification.
Once a bespoke e-drivetrain has been designed and tested, Kleanbus says it takes less than two weeks to repower an individual bus, getting the vehicle back in service in as little time as possible.
The company says operating costs for repowered buses are also dramatically lower, at a third of those of a conventional diesel bus, likely to be even greater with the latest new Bus Service Operators Grant (BSOG) Zero Emission Bus (ZEB) incentive of 22p per kilometre, factored in.
Payment and infrastructure
Kleanbus says its electric repowered buses cost one fifth of a new electric bus. The company’s partnerships with finance providers allow operators several ways to finance their vehicle, ranging from paying for the vehicle upfront and leasing the battery, to paying nothing upfront and leasing both the vehicle and the battery. In this way, operators can fund the cost of the repower through operating revenue, maximising the business case.
And thanks to the company’s relationships with charging providers, Kleanbus also arranges for an operator’s depot to be upgraded with appropriate charging technology, enabling them to go electric without having to contact third parties.
Joe Tighe said: “I am delighted to reveal first images of our modular repower platform system, which can be applied to any bus. Leveraging the latest in fully warranted and proven components from leading Tier 1s, this technology agnostic solution enables us to create a flexible ‘e-drivetrain in a box’, integrated into any vehicle via our own proprietary software.
“I am hugely proud of our innovative system, but Kleanbus is more than a technology company, we provide a full one-stop-shop to bus operators, with innovative financing and charging as part of the total package, making it easy for them to go zero-emission.
“The potential for repowered buses is huge. They could bring about fully electric bus fleets six years earlier than relying on roll out of new zero emission buses alone. This could give a potential saving of over 4Mt CO2 and deliver health benefits of improved air quality sooner – and Kleanbus can play a crucial role in accelerating the transition to a clean future while providing lower operating costs for bus fleets.”