Newcastle Gearing Up for First Electric Buses

Newcastle public transport is a step closer to making a major energy transition, with preparations underway for the arrival of three Zero Emission Buses to join the Newcastle Transport fleet in the coming months.

Minister for Transport and Veterans David Elliott said the delivery would mark a major milestone for Newcastle, as it will be the first time this technology is permanently introduced outside of metropolitan Sydney.

“The NSW Government is committed to transitioning the state’s fleet of more than 8,000 diesel and gas buses to zero emissions technology, and this is only the start for our outer-metropolitan areas,” Mr Elliott said.

“Electric buses will deliver a more sustainable transport option for the Newcastle and Lake Macquarie communities, encouraging more people to make the switch to public transport.”
Parliamentary Secretary for the Hunter Taylor Martin MLC said the new buses are a win for the region.

“The introduction of Zero Emission Buses into the Newcastle transport network will be great for our environment and health, and will benefit commuters,” Mr Martin said.

Keolis Downer Hunter General Manager Emmanuel Genlot said staff are training to operate the new buses and the depot is being upgraded for the arrival of the electric chargers.

“While the electric buses will look very similar to what is operating today, customers will notice a quieter and smoother ride, giving Novocastrians another reason to leave the car at home and get onboard,” Mr Genlot said.

The vehicles are being manufactured by the BusTech Group and are capable of completing a full day’s operation on a single charge.

BusTech Group CEO Dan Marks said the company was proud to be designing, engineering and manufacturing these electric buses in Australia for Newcastle.

“This creates lasting economic benefits, generates employment opportunities for Australians, and ensures the lowest carbon footprint possible,” Mr Marks said.

Hamilton Bus Depot is being upgraded with technology and infrastructure to support the rollout, with chargers due to arrive this month and the buses due to arrive in coming months.