World's first hydrogen double-decker buses arrive in Europe’s top oil city

The maker, Wrightbus, is about to complete an order of 20 double-decker hydrogen buses and will take delivery in London at the start of next year.
By : Bloomberg
| Updated on: 07 Oct 2020, 13:39 PM
15 double-decker hydrogen buses made by Wrightbus Ltd will arrive in Aberdeen, Scotland, on Wednesday. (Photo courtesy: Twitter/@NIOgov)
15 double-decker hydrogen buses made by Wrightbus Ltd will arrive in Aberdeen, Scotland, on Wednesday. (Photo courtesy: Twitter/@NIOgov)
15 double-decker hydrogen buses made by Wrightbus Ltd will arrive in Aberdeen, Scotland, on Wednesday. (Photo courtesy: Twitter/@NIOgov)
15 double-decker hydrogen buses made by Wrightbus Ltd will arrive in Aberdeen, Scotland, on Wednesday. (Photo courtesy: Twitter/@NIOgov)

The world’s first double-decker hydrogen buses will arrive in Aberdeen, Scotland, on Wednesday, a city best known as a base for some of the world’s top oil companies.

The 15 buses are made by Wrightbus Ltd, a Northern Irish firm bought by Jo Bamford, the son of JC Bamford Excavators Ltd chair Anthony Bamford. The deliveries will give Aberdeen one of the world’s biggest fleets of hydrogen buses.

Britain wants to be at the forefront of the hydrogen industry, and the government says it will outline its strategy for the sector next year as well as present a plan to create a hydrogen transport hub. The fuel is seen as key to slashing harmful emissions in everything from industry to transport and heating homes.

Similar Cars

Find More Cars
Renault City K-ze (HT Auto photo)
UPCOMING
Renault City K-ze
Electric | Automatic
₹6 - 10 Lakhs* *Expected Price
Honda City-4th-generation (HT Auto photo)
Honda City-4th-generation
1497 cc | Petrol | Manual | 17.4 kmpl
₹9.3 - 10 Lakhs**Ex-showroom price
Honda All New City (HT Auto photo)
Honda All New City
1498 cc | Petrol | Manual | 17.8 kmpl
₹11 - 15.21 Lakhs**Ex-showroom price
Honda City (HT Auto photo)
Honda City
1497 cc | Petrol | Manual | 17.4 kmpl
₹11 - 11.26 Lakhs**Ex-showroom price
Honda City Hybrid (HT Auto photo)
Honda City Hybrid
1498 cc | Hybrid (Electric + Petrol) | Automatic (EV/Hybrid) | 26.5 kmpl
₹19.5 Lakhs**Ex-showroom price
Mahindra E20 Nxt (HT Auto photo)
UPCOMING
Mahindra E20 Nxt
 
₹6 - 8 Lakhs* *Expected Price

Hydrogen is already making progress in public transport. Last week the first hydrogen-powered trains were trialled in Britain. They could be carrying passengers by 2022. Buses are ready today, and the cost of running them will come down, according to Bamford, who has been in the business for 15 years.

FOLLOW US:Stay Updated with latest content - Subscribe us on
FOLLOW US:Stay Updated with latest content - Subscribe us on

“We can fill it up at the same cost and it has the same running costs pretty much as a diesel bus but the capital cost is twice as expensive," Bamford said in an interview. “With a bit of volume we can get the cost down to the same."

He has asked the government for 500 million ($649 million) pounds to support him to build 3,000 hydrogen buses by 2024. That’s still less than 10% of the UK’s current bus fleet. Wrightbus is about to complete an order of 20 double-decker hydrogen buses and will take delivery in London at the start of next year.

Wrightbus also makes electric buses but because of the complication around charging and range-anxiety, Bamford is backing hydrogen which refuels like a petrol pump.

“When it comes to zero emissions the most difficult thing to change is human behavior," he said. “We’re creatures of habit, so if you can do something that mimics how we use transport today I think you get mass adoption."

Another of Bamford’s companies, Ryse Hydrogen Plc, is focused on creating a network for the fuel. The company produces hydrogen using electricity from wind farms, installs and operates storage, transport networks, and dispensing equipment. London will be his first supply customer starting in 2021.

Bamford is looking to set up a $500 million fund that’ll invest in creating an entire supply chain for the gas. He’ll be putting some of his family money into it but he’s looking for someone who has run a private equity energy fund to come and work with him raising the capital.

“Once people start figuring out how to finance this kit this stuff becomes really interesting for the financial world to get going with," he said. “Everyone knows it’s gonna be a big market. The question is how do you get into it."

Aberdeen’s green-colored buses will be road tested for a few weeks before going into service at the end of the month.

First Published Date: 07 Oct 2020, 11:01 AM IST
Recommended For You
View All
NEXT ARTICLE BEGINS

Please provide your details to get Personalized Offers on

Choose city
+91 | Choose city
Choose city
Choose city
By clicking VIEW OFFERS you Agree to our Terms and Privacy Policy

Dear Name

Please verify your mobile number.

+91 | Choose city