Early Christmas in London: New Fleet of Hybrid Buses Arrives

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New hybrid buses for London.London got its first shipment of a new fleet of hybrid buses this week, just in time for Christmas. The new bus is supposed to be the most environmentally friendly of its kind, according to Business Green, and is allegedly 15% more fuel efficient than existing hybrid buses.

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The new hybrids have been specifically designed for London, taking inspiration from the classic and iconic red double-decker Routemaster bus. Unlike the old Routemasters, it has to conform to much stricter emissions standards. The new hybrid emitted only 640 g/km of carbon dioxide, less than half of a standard diesel bus’s emissions (1295 g/km).

In addition to having lower emissions, Transport for London (TfL) says the bus is 40% more fuel efficient than a standard diesel-powered double decker. The hybrid is even quieter, reducing overall noise on the streets.

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London Mayor Boris Johnson spoke enthusiastically about the latest addition to London’s public transit network at the launch, also according to Business Green:

“Christmas has arrived early in the form of this revolutionary new bus whose gleaming coat of red paint and sinuous curves will brighten the day of all who see it humming along our great city’s streets. It is the latest, greatest masterpiece of British engineering and design, and I am certain it will become a much-loved and iconic vehicle akin to the legendary Routemaster from which it draws so much inspiration.”

Passenger trials start in February 2012, with 8 of the new hybrids serving route 38 (Victoria to Hackney, for anyone who’ll be in the London area next year and wants to take a ride). If the passenger trials go well, plans are under way for more of the buses to serve additional routes.

If you’ll be in London after February and have any desire to check out one of these new hybrids, let us know how it goes. Or just chime in below, regardless of where you are, and let us know what you think of the hybrids.

Source: Business Green | Image: Wikimedia Commons

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