Tata Motors starts trials of electric bus in Guwahati
Tata Motors has commenced trials of its 9-m electric bus in Guwahati. With a seating capacity of 26-34 passengers, the full-auto transmission Tata Ultra electric bus was flagged off by Anand Prakash Tiwari, Managing Director, Assam State Transport Corporation (ASTC), on October 16, 2017, making it the first state transport undertaking (STU) in Eastern India to start trials of an electric vehicle. The STU in collaboration with Tata Motors will run the trials for 7 days.
This trial follows the successful trials of the 9-m electric bus from Parwanoo to Shimla a few months ago, where the bus covered 160 kms in one full charge. Tata Motors said trials in Chandigarh also showed ‘very encouraging’ results in a running of 143 kms, covering approximately 70% of the charge. These trials are part of the Ministry of Road Transport’s agenda for the electrification of public transport, for which Tata Motors is getting ready with its range of electric vehicles, from 9 meters to 12 meters with various seating configurations, as well as its last mile passenger transport vehicle, the Tata Magic Iris.
A K Jindal, Head, Engineering Research Centre, Tata Motors, said, “These buses qualify for the subsidy under revised FAME scheme which will give a big boost to the electrification of public transport. Tata Motors is also working with various study groups formed by the central government to work out various business models for operating electric vehicles and to optimise the overall economics of these buses, for a truly Make in India solution.”
Tata Motors has taken major steps in hybridisation and electrification of passenger transportation and has developed technologies for hybrid and electric vehicles. It has also developed alternative fuel technologies such as CNG, LNG, Bio-CNG, Bio-Diesel and Fuel Cell. The electric vehicle developed on proven bus platforms also offers regenerative braking which recovers between 25 to 35% of the brake energy.
The electric buses are equipped with a highly efficient drive train and weight-optimised battery, coupled with Tata Motors proprietary energy management system and vehicle control strategy for a low total cost of ownership. The EV battery pack is optimised to avoid compromise on the passenger capacity proving the best efficiency in KWHR/KM. The EV battery is liquid cooled and specially designed for Indian temperature condition thus providing a higher battery life along with highly efficient performance. The roof mounted battery provides safety from water logging of electrical equipment. The range of the buses can be enhanced with smaller battery pack to 200 to 240 km with opportunity charging. The electric bus is also loaded with features such as multiplex wiring system, automatic ticketing / smart card-enabled system, ITS-enabled and reverse camera assist etc. which can be fitted on customer request. Tata Motors claims that it is India’s first OEM to get ARAI and homologation certification for 9m and 12-m electric buses.