New Volvo BZL makes its UK & Ireland debut

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The BZL – Volvo Buses’ new electric bus platform – made its UK and Ireland debut this week at a special ‘Go Electric’ event in Coventry.

Introduced globally on a virtual basis in September this year, this was the first opportunity for customers in the British Isles and Ireland to see, first-hand, this significant product introduction.

Over the course of three days, Tuesday 23rd to Thursday 25th November, the ‘Go Electric’ event brought together customers and other stakeholders at Volvo’s Bus & Coach Sales Centre in Coventry.

The event showcased Volvo’s all-new electromobility solution – the BZL Electric – which is a chassis platform designed for both single and double deck applications.

A BZL Electric double deck bus built to Transport for London (TfL) specification, has been developed in conjunction with bodybuilder MCV and will shortly enter service in London with Metroline. The BZL Electric single deck, again developed with MCV, will be used as a demonstration vehicle throughout 2022.

The Volvo BZL Electric platform is the latest stage in Swedish company’s electromobility journey, with Volvo Buses spearheading the progressive electrification of products right across the Volvo Group.

It is a journey that began with the introduction of the first hybrid double deck buses in London in 2009, with the first fully electric single deck vehicles in traffic in 2018. To date, Volvo Buses have supplied over 7,600 hybrid or fully electric buses globally, in markets as diverse as Europe, North & South America, India, Asia and Australia.

At the ‘Go Electric’ event, invited customers and journalists had the opportunity to hear presentations from key Volvo personnel on the development, features and safety aspects of the new chassis platform and its associated technology and infrastructure, as well as drive the launch vehicles for the first time.

The event also marked the final official engagement for outgoing Volvo Bus UK & Ireland Managing Director, Nick Page, who bid farewell: “I am delighted to be able to celebrate this important milestone in Volvo’s electromobility journey with colleagues and friends in the industry. Although my personal journey with Volvo is drawing to a close, the new Volvo BZL Electric – together with the requisite technology, services and support from the global Volvo organisation to deliver successful operation of electric vehicles – will prove to be the route forward for many operators on their on-going journey towards net zero.”

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