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Arrival’s electric bus revealed as a pre-production prototype

BANBURY, UK – British electric bus and van maker Arrival on Thursday unveiled a new prototype of an electric bus it hopes to start production next year to sell for the price of one pound. ordinary car diesel oil bus.

The pre-production bus will start hitting the roads within the next few weeks, and mass production will begin at a plant in the US state of South Carolina in the second quarter.

During the bus tour for Reuters, company president Avinash Rugoobur emphasized the fact that, because the battery located in the floor – some electric buses put them on the ceiling – buses have skylights that run the length of the vehicle. Buses are also lowered to the ground for easy access by passengers.

The company uses composite body panels that are lighter but stronger than steel or aluminum to reduce product costs.

Arrival’s system monitors every part of the vehicle in real time and can wirelessly upgrade the software associated with any of them, Rugoobur said.

“Know and understand how your vehicle is running in real time and can optimize to reduce your fleet costs,” he said. “All of this in a bus that’s cheaper than any other electric bus on the market and competes with diesel.”

Depending on the market, electric buses can be up to 50% more expensive than a comparable diesel engine.

Arrival’s earlier prototype buses were tested with First Bus, one of the UK’s largest bus operators.

Arrival says about 12% of the 64,000 vehicles currently with a non-binding order or letter of intent are buses. Its South Carolina plant will have an annual production capacity of 10,000 units, and executives say they will announce more plants soon.

The electric bus market is heating up as countries, states and cities promote zero-emissions transportation.

Companies like California startup Proterra are competing with Of China BYD, or Volvo AB. Switch Mobility, a British unit of Commercial vehicle Manufacturer Ashok Leyland, said this week it will deliver 300 electric buses to the public transport authority in the Indian city of Bengaluru.

US Congress just passed $first trillion in infrastructure spending, including $5.25 billion on electric buses through 2026, less than the $130 million the government spent on electric transit bus programs in 2020.

Mike Ableson, Arrival’s head of North American operations, says the funding will help make electric buses more affordable for cash-strapped local governments – but the company’s goal is to produce A zero-emission bus at the same price as a diesel bus will change that. which equation.

“Transportation agencies won’t have to worry about additional funding, they’ll be able to start buying electric buses instead of diesel-powered buses,” Ableson said.

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