Together with the City of London, the RATP Group has committed to reducing its CO2 emissions for more sustainable mobility. The new silent-running vehicle, wrapped in a unique green edition of the brand’s Union Jack livery, has a range of 150km – the equivalent of six loops of The Original Tour’s Yellow route. It will carry up to 75 passengers at a time, seven days a week, and on an average day will make 125 stops on a single charge. It will be charged overnight at the operator’s Grade II listed Wandsworth depot; it takes 4.5 hours to fully charge the battery, after which the bus can run for up to 11.5 hours.
Every day people rely on us to discover the best of the most iconic cities around the world and we’re investing in innovation for a new generation of sightseers. We’re proud to be the first sightseeing network to introduce a 100% electric bus in London, showing our commitment to our customers, the city and the community.
To help tackle the air pollution health crisis in London we have taken bold action to ‘green’ the bus fleet and cut toxic vehicle emissions, and it is fantastic that we now have the UK’s first fully electric sightseeing bus on the capital’s streets. With six months to go until the introduction of the Ultra Low Emission Zone in central London, electric vehicles are growing in popularity, and people are more aware than ever of the harmful pollution older buses and vehicles can emit. I want to congratulate The Original Tour on the first of many brilliant green sightseeing buses.
RATP Group worked with four industrial groups in Europe – UNVI, Ziehl Abegg, BMZ and SAF – to design this first ever double-decker, open-top electric vehicle which was also launched in Paris in April 2018. The expertise and know-how of the RATP Group have been decisive in this integration process.
The Group already operates nearly 1,000 hybrid buses, 75 electric buses and 200 buses using natural gas in several cities in France and internationally.
About the Original Tour
The Original Tour is credited with pioneering the now familiar hop-on hop-off sightseeing concept. Founded in 1951 during The Festival of Britain it invited passengers to tour ‘around the town for half a crown’. Today it is the only London bus tour to be awarded Trip Advisor’s Travellers Choice Award.
The RATP group and the sightseeing operation
RATP Group is one of the few public transport operators in the world with know-how and experience operating sightseeing buses. In 2015, RATP Dev, RATP Group subsidiary, created Extrapolitan, an international alliance aimed at bringing together the best operators in the sector. The latter benefit from the expertise of RATP group, one of the world's leading public transport. Extrapolitan is now present in 19 cities around the world: Paris, London, Hong Kong, Berlin, Copenhagen, Stockholm, Helsinki, Nice, Marseille, Athens, Bath, Windsor, Cardiff, Riga, Tallinn, Budapest and Split, Rome and Monaco.
The Extrapolitan alliance is planning to roll out the 100% electric double decker bus on several of its networks, starting with The Original Tour in London, where the conversion of the fleet to electric starts this spring of 2018.