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Open-top tourist buses to go electric

A new era of emissions-free tourism is imminent thanks to a partnership between the world’s biggest supplier of open-top buses and electric powertrain company BYD.

UNVI, a Spanish bus manufacturer, specialises in creating the open-top double deckers, seen in service in tourist hotspots across the globe. It has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Chinese giant, which has become one of the biggest names in electric mobility over recent years.

Under the agreement, BYD will supply the electric chassis and battery packs, and UNVI will create the open-top coachwork, in a move that should reduce emissions in some of the world’s oldest and most densely populated cities, where such vehicles frequently operate.

Isbrand Ho, Managing Director of BYD Europe, said, “It has long been our intention to offer our battery electric technology in open top tourist buses. With the recognition of the pressure of air quality issues on city environments, transition to pure electric vehicles is a fast-developing necessity. So we are delighted to forge this new partnership with UNVI, the world leader in the open top double decker market.”

Eloy Perez Martinez, Chief Executive Officer of UNVI, added, “BYD is the foremost expert in electric bus technology and supply and our new joint venture will result in an outstanding offer to our clients across Europe. We look forward to converting our existing clients to this new and exciting zero pollution technology and winning new ones too.”