Public transport is definitely one of the key ways to reduce carbon footprints but what if the public transport is also eco-friendly? Given that curbing the pollution on the roads is the need of the hour, Ashok Leyland’s Electric bus emerges as a beacon of hope. It is a zero-emission, non-polluting vehicle created specifically for Indian roads and passenger conditions, the bus has a seating capacity ranging from 35 to 65.
The bus is introduced in lines with National Electric Mobility Plan, which aims at a 20% penetration of electric/hybrid vehicles by 2020. “India’s first ever fully electric bus, developed for India and made in India, is a big leap in mass public transport.This vehicle will support the government initiative of reducing India’s eight lakh crore fuel import bill and is a promise for a brighter and cleaner future for all of us and for our future generations,” said Ambuj Sharma IAS, additional chief secretary, industries and commerce, government of Tamil Nadu.
Being the country’s first such indigenously made vehicle, designed and engineered in India, it’s in line with the company’s vision for the future of mass mobility. Ashok Leyland will be the first bus maker to leverage the government subsidy. The level of subsidy is governed by the charging speed, length of the bus, among other factors. Built with a fire-detection and suppression system, the bus can travel 120 km on a single charge. T. Venkataraman, Senior Vice President, Ashok Leyland said as per a report in The Hindu : “It will not be built to stock, but made specific to order.”
The buses would be manufactured at Viralimalai, Tamil Nadu and Alwar, Rajasthan. State Transport Undertakings in Himachal Pradesh and Maharashtra are also showing interest in this project. The target market for this bus is heritage sites, metro stations, tarmacs, rural areas, hill stations and by IT firms and educational institutions.Ashok Leyland plans to sell close to 50 electric buses in the current fiscal and around 200 units next year.
Indian Govt. Railways replaced all diesel-run trains with high-speed electric trains for shorter routes across the country under Mission Raftar since August 2016, which has proved to be highly successful in improving both the speed and environment friendliness of public transports. Even cars are adopting eco-friendly measures and with buses also coming the fold, these measures could predict a cleaner and better pollution free country.
Feature Image Courtesy: Livemint