The highly successful BYD-ADL partnership is today celebrating the delivery of not only one of its largest electric bus orders in London – for 36 vehicles – but also the transformation of the historic and land-locked RATP Dev Shepherd’s Bush garage in West London into an advanced, smart electric bus operating centre.

In November 2017 BYD and its UK partner Alexander Dennis Limited (ADL) secured the order for the procurement of 36 10.8m BYD ADL Enviro200 EV electric buses along with the installation of 37 charging units and associated charging infrastructure.

With a fleet of some 1,200 buses, RATP Dev London operates 70 bus routes across the London network. Their Shepherd’s Bush depot house the 36 buses for Transport for London routes C1 and 70, which are being converted to full electric operation following the company’s success in winning these routes through TfL’s tendering process.

Preparing Shepherds Bush bus garage for the electric buses involved a further collaboration with BYD and ADL’s strategic partner, SSE, to ensure the installation of the electric vehicle infrastructure. SSE installed vital electric power and data cables and wiring at the garage. BYD’s role included installing BYD’s Smart Charging Management System, which introduced an automatic charging system which allows the bus depot to simultaneously charge all the depot’s buses over night with minimal supervision. The BYD system removes the risks associated with manually charging buses and also cuts down on the manpower required over a night shift, in turn reducing operating costs.

BYD and its partners ensured that this project was completed with minimal interruption to RATP Dev London’s daily operations. RATP Dev aims to progressively turn Shepherd’s Bush into a depot with an all-electric fleet, to make it the company’s first zero-emissions bus garage in London. 

The renewed Shepherd’s Bush facility was officially opened by Catherine Guillouard, Chairwoman and CEO of RATP Group, Laurence Batlle, CEO of RATP Dev and TfL Commissioner Mike Brown.

Frank Thorpe, BYD UK Country Manager, said: “This highly complex project at Shepherd’s Bush is one of the best examples so far of how the in-depth experience of BYD in electric bus operation and infrastructure installation – coupled with the input of our strategic partners such as ADL and SSE – can simplify the task of getting electric bus fleets up and running in a short time”. He added: “This is far from a simple task and there are many pitfalls as can be seen from another project in the UK where new electric buses are having to be recharged by a diesel generator”.

Arthur Whiteside, ADL’s Managing Director for UK Sales, commented: “We’re delighted that the electric bus partnership between ourselves and BYD continues to lead the charge in the UK. With over 215 BYD ADL EnviroEV buses delivered or on order and well in excess of 1.5 million electric miles clocked up in the UK, it is clear that operators appreciate not only the vehicles we supply, but also the full infrastructure support from route analysis to site surveys which can be delivered. It demonstrates our commitment to seeing our customers as partners – we’re with them every step of the way.”