As part of Brisbane Metro, Brisbane City Council will introduce a new fleet of 60 high-capacity Metro vehicles. The Metro vehicles will integrate seamlessly into busway operations and share the busway with existing bus services, as part of a better planned network. For more information see the IDTechEx report on Electric School Buses and Midi Buses 2019-2039.
Following an extensive tender process, Council is recommending world-leading vehicle manufacturer HESS, in partnership with Brisbane-based supplier Volgren, and electric infrastructure experts ABB, to design and build the Brisbane Metro vehicle fleet.
HESS and its project partners will deliver a zero tailpipe emission, battery electric fleet of vehicles with state of-the-art, flash charging infrastructure. The buses will be recharged in less than six minutes.
The Metro vehicles will be an Australian-first, using tried and tested European technology that will help future-proof Brisbane's public transport network. Each vehicle will be 24.4 metres in length and 2.55 metres wide, with the capacity to carry 150 passengers in comfort and 180 passengers in event mode.
Other key features of the Metro vehicle include:
zero tailpipe emissions, battery electric operation
flash charging in under six minutes at the end of route
spacious bi-articulated design, providing three large open passenger areas
four large double doors along the length of the vehicle for quicker boarding
low-floor design from front to rear, providing a high level of accessibility
in-built USB charging points and on-board WiFi
passenger information displays and next stop audio and visual route information
separated driver's cabin
panoramic rear window, for taking advantage of city views
interior illuminated ceiling
The Metro vehicle will also offer close-to-silent operation and provide a smooth, comfortable journey for passengers.
Initially HESS and its partners will design and build a pilot Metro vehicle, which will be extensively tested in Brisbane. The Brisbane Metro pilot vehicle is expected to be ready for testing in 2020.
Following the successful trial of the pilot vehicle, Council will have the option to purchase 59 additional Metro vehicles, with services expected to commence in late 2023, subject to approvals.