Harris Group delivers Higer STEED to Glenveagh National Park

The Harris Group has supplied the first ever electric bus to enter service in the Irish public sector – a Higer STEED.

The bus will be put into service in Glenveagh National Park in Donegal on behalf of The Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht.

Called the STEED (Sustainable Transport Electric Energy Delivered), the vehicle has been optimised to Harris Group specifications by manufacturer Higer, China’s leading bus and coach exporter.

The STEED will be the first of its type to enter usage in the country’s mass transportation network and will answer growing demand for greener bus solutions from public and private operators as well as the general public.

Harris Group CEO Denise Harris said the new vehicle is the latest in a long line of innovations pioneered by the company.

“At Harris Group we have always kept our focus on the future and today, against the backdrop of climate change, that means a transition to zero-emissions motoring and green transport technology,” Mrs Harris commented.

“The Government’s Climate Action Plan 2019 sets out clear targets in relation to the decarbonisation of the public transport fleet and a move to EV buses. We commend this objective as well as the strong appetite among private operators to follow suit, and we are proud to introduce the STEED as the first vehicle to bridge the gap between aspirational objectives and operational needs.”

Powered by CATL lithium ion batteries producing 174 Kw of output the STEED has a maximum passenger capacity of 48 and an operational range of over 200km, putting it in the category of ‘crossover’ vehicles suitable for service on both urban and rural route networks.

Each vehicle is also delivered with its own CCS2 DC fast-charging infrastructure providing a full charge in less than two hours, maximising on-road time and reducing operating costs. The STEED also leads the charge in terms of passenger accessibility and capacity, with a low-entry flat floor enabling easy wheelchair access. Additional features include saloon air conditioning and low power, high output destination boards.