As electric vehicles become more affordable and improved battery technology delivers longer range and shorter refuelling times, we expect to see an increase in electric vehicles on NSW roads. These vehicles are cheaper, cleaner and quieter to run, bringing significant economic and environmental benefits.
In January 2019, the NSW Government released the Electric and Hybrid Vehicle Plan to ensure we have the right infrastructure and information available to support use of these vehicles on the network.
The Electric and Hybrid Vehicle Plan includes a $5 million co-investment for regional fast chargers and commuter car park slow chargers.
Expressions of Interest (EOIs) have been sought for partners in the delivery of electric vehicle chargers. EOIs are currently being evaluated and shortlisted.
In addition, Transport for NSW is working with an Australian tech start-up, Evenergi, to create an online customer platform to help find charging points and purchase an EV.
Electric buses are quieter, cleaner and have zero tailpipe emissions, making them ideal for preserving the amenity of local places and safer to operate in tunnels and underground interchanges due to reduced nitrous oxides and fine particulates.
The NSW Electric and Hybrid Vehicle Plan included an action to trial zero emission buses with a view to testing the operational, technical, financial, customer-experience and environmental performance of these new technologies.
As part of the new Transit Systems West contract for region 6 in Sydney’s inner west, four electric buses have commenced operations from the Leichhardt depot. The buses will be trialled for two years on routes 431 (Glebe Point to Martin Place), 433 (Balmain to Central) and 470 (Lilyfield to Martin Place). The buses have been manufactured by BYD-Gemilang and each vehicle is capable of travelling up to 350km a day on a full charge.
A zero emissions bus trial was also undertaken on Nowra Coaches services between Kiama and Bomaderry railway stations. The trial, which was held between February and June 2019, operated a Yutong E12 electric bus. During the trial, approximately 8,500 passengers took part. Customer surveys showed a high level of satisfaction with the trial service.
Transport for NSW is investigating expanding trials that will enable larger numbers of customers to experience electric buses.