Switch Mobility Ltd has today revealed India’s first electric double-decker air-conditioned bus dubbed the Switch EiV 22 and is designed, developed and manufactured locally utilising the brand’s global electric bus expertise. Switch EiV 22 is said to have been designed to revolutionize public transportation and set new standards in the intra-city bus market in India.
The Switch EiV 22 is also the world’s first standard floor, air-conditioned, electric double-decker with wider door on the rear overhang and a rear staircase. The double-decker has a lightweight aluminium body construction to offer a higher passenger-to-weight ratio and a competitive cost per km per passenger. Speaking of the launch, Nitin Gadkari, Minister of Road Transport and Highways of India, said,
“Government’s vision and policies are supportive towards EV adoption with growing consumer demand for greener solutions. I would like to congratulate Switch Mobility, subsidiary of Ashok Leyland, for being the one to revive the double decker and remain committed to introducing new technologies for the benefit of passengers and society, at large.”
Ashok Leyland was a pioneer among the Indian companies when it first introduced the double-decker in 1967 in the city of Mumbai and now Hinduja Group’s Switch is carrying forward that legacy with its acclaimed expertise in double deckers both in India as well as the United Kingdom. It is worth noting that more than 100 Switch electric double-deckers are operational on UK roads currently.
The EiV 22 is designed and developed to meet Indian driving conditions specifically according to the brand. The electric double-decker can ferry nearly twice the number of seated passengers as a comparable single-decker bus with just an 18 per cent increase in kerb weight and the architecture uses a 650 V system in a similar fashion to the EiV 12, which was launched in June 2022.
It is equipped with NMC chemistry batteries for improved range and efficiency and already 200 units of the EiV 22 have been ordered by BEST, Mumbai – the most prolific bus operator of double-decker buses in India for over seven decades.
The electric double-decker comes with wide front and rear doors, two staircases and an emergency door complying with the latest safety norms. In the 65-seater, the AC is said to offer effective cooling in India’s hot climatic conditions. Each seat has a lightweight cushion and the interiors come with ‘car like’ comfort.
It is powered by a 231 kWh capacity, 2-string, liquid-cooled, battery pack with a dual gun charging system enabling it to have a range of up to 250 km for intra-city applications.