Nottingham City orders full-electric Mellor Orion E
The UK’s leading ‘size-appropriate’ bus manufacturer, Mellor, is to supply a full-electric, emissions-free Orion E bus for Nottingham City Council’s Highways England-funded Electric Van Experience (EVE) Project. The council says it has earmarked the Orion E for use on its passenger transport routes following the project trial.
The Mellor Orion E is the world’s first all-electric low-floor small bus, boasting a 160km range from a single-charge. Following delivery in May, the 15-seat capacity Orion E will form an integral part of the Council’s £2.69 million EVE Project where 50 vehicles – including cars, buses and light commercials – will be trialled over two-years to assess the efficacy of eMobility. The EVE Project is being funded and monitored by Highways England’s.
Specifically, the Orion E will work on local operations with Nottingham City Council’s Special Educational Needs service. The electric bus will be equipped with on-board telematics to allow the council and Highway’s England to fully monitor vehicle parameters over its two-year EVE Project secondment.
Already with one of the UK’s largest ultra-low emission vehicle fleets, Nottingham City Council and the EVE Project expects an increasing acceptance of vehicle electrification as a long-term public transport solution, and as a significant contributor towards the council’s target of carbon neutrality in 2028.
Nottingham City Council has a 20-year history of operating Mellor vehicles, and says it is confident that the Orion E will deliver a compelling business case for electrification. “We’re well-used to Mellor products in our bus fleet,” said Andrew Smith, Assistant Manager Fleet Services at Nottingham City Council, “quality and reliability are built into every one of our Mellor buses and I expect the same from the Orion E. It’s the first time we’ve used Mellor’s electric driveline technology,” he said, “so we must await performance data from the telematics. However, Mellor has always been at the forefront of innovation, so I’m confident the Orion E is going to deliver on safety, productivity and comfort for passengers. So confident, in fact, we already have plans in place to run the Orion E on its passenger transport routes in Nottingham after the EVE Project trials are complete.”