Kleanbus has begun a pilot project with Edinburgh-based bus operator Lothian to repower 18 of its existing open-top mid-life diesel vehicles to electric.

The Volvo B5TL buses that have been identified for the pilot will be repowered using Kleanbus’ modular electric platform featuring an optimised battery size to perfectly suit its duty cycle without overburdening the vehicle with unnecessary weight, which would otherwise waste energy.

The Kleanbus repower programme begins with a full base vehicle evaluation and analysis of operator duty cycles, enabling a conceptual drivetrain to be modelled and validated through simulation.

In parallel, the diesel engine and all associated systems are removed. The packaging space is fully CAD scanned and digitised to create a bespoke electric e-drivetrain in a box platform that perfectly fits the engine compartment. Once prototypes are created, they are subjected to a rigorous test and validation programme ahead of certification.

Lothian recently published ‘Driving towards Net Zero’, a document which outlined its objective of a fully zero-emission bus fleet by 2035, with repowering playing a key role.

Colin Barnes, Engineering Director, Lothian said, “Repowering has a vital role to play in our Driving towards Net Zero strategy as we transition to an all-zero emission fleet.

“Lothian is committed to bolstering the efforts of the Scottish Government and City of Edinburgh Council to enhance local air quality.

“Working with Kleanbus to upcycle current diesel buses to electric helps us to accelerate our transition to a more environmentally friendly transportation network at pace and accelerate our net zero plan.”

Joe Tighe, Co-founder, and CEO of Kleanbus, said, “Our technology is an ideal solution for quick, cost-effective, and optimum use of resources.

“Upcycling is the most environmentally friendly solution to transform a current diesel fleet as it avoids unnecessary scrappage.”


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