A new entrant has rolled into the electric bus game and might just take things to the next level, taking the shape of a big and bright red people-mover with claims of unparalleled range. The newly introduced Jewel E electric bus boasts the largest battery and longest range of any electric double decker bus in the world, with testing to kick off later this year.
We’re seeing some interesting developments when it comes to electrification of bus transport, from the 40-ft (12-m) behemoth being developed by BYD in China, to long-range versions capable of covering 600 miles (965 km) on a single charge, to the zero-emission school buses taking shape in California. BYD also actually developed the world’s first electric double decker bus for use in London, which rolled out in 2016 with a 345-kWh battery pack offering a 190-mile (305-km) range.
The incoming Jewel E marks a sizable step forward for the technology, helped along by the handiwork of Equipmake, producer of the world’s most power-dense electric motor. The British company developed a purpose-built powertrain for the cutting-edge electric bus, equipping it with a massive 543-kWh battery, the largest ever fitted to a single-axle double decker bus, allowing for a maximum range of up to 250 miles (402 km).
This so-called Zero Emission Drivetrain produces a maximum torque of 3,500 Nm (2,581 lb-ft) and power output of 400 kW. It also uses a water-glycol cooling circuit to regulate the temperature of the motor, inverter and battery to optimize the overall efficiency of the vehicle. The bright red body, meanwhile, is produced by Spanish coachbuilder Beulas.
“Improving urban air quality is a global problem,” says Ian Foley, Managing Director of Equipmake. “At the same time, operators want vehicles that are cost-effective and highly efficient, while governments and local bodies need bus manufacturers to bring advanced technology to market quickly. Equipmake has taken all of this into account and the result is our innovative new EV double decker, Jewel E.”
The Jewel E is set to undergo testing in the fourth quarter of 2021 with in-service trials to follow in the first quarter of next year. Sales and manufacturing will also kick off in 2022.
You can see more of the Jewel E bus in the video below.
Equipmake and Beulas reveal Jewel E – a new electric double decker bus with a 250-mile range