The transport company Latrobe Valley Bus Lines (LVBL), based east of Melbourne, has ordered eight B5LH hybrid buses for its Latrobe Valley fleet. The order follows a successful 12 month trial of a Volvo hybrid. The hybrids, to be bodied locally in Melbourne by Volgren, will be delivered over the next three years, with the first three going into service in 2018.
The hybrid buses will feature low floor layouts to improve passenger access and safety, and will operate around the Latrobe Valley. They will supplement the existing Volvo Euro 6 diesel buses in the low-floor route service fleet.
“Volvo’s hybrid buses are part of our ongoing approach to sustainable transport solutions and we are proud to be working on this project with Latrobe Valley Bus Lines. It’s great to see Public Transport Victoria and Latrobe Valley taking the first step on the longer journey towards fully electric buses in the years to come,” said David Mead, Acting General Manager, Volvo Bus Australia.
“Whilst we have seen the technology run now in Perth, Brisbane, Canberra, Adelaide and Wollongong, this is the first time we have the Government, an operator and our partners aligned to move forward on a project,” he added.
Volvo B5LH Hybrid uses 30 per cent less fuel and has a correspondingly lower climate impact than a diesel bus, and up to 50 per cent reduction in nitrogen oxide and particle emissions.
In total, Volvo Buses has sold more than 3,500 hybrids worldwide. The biggest markets are the UK, Colombia, Spain and Sweden.