‘Made in UAE’ electric buses with flash charging to hit streets in 2022

The buses can cover 95km after a single charge

Supplied photo
Supplied photo

Ashwani Kumar

Published: Wed 8 Dec 2021, 4:10 PM

Three private sector giants are collaborating to transform Abu Dhabi into a more friendly and carbon-neutral city with their hi-tech ‘Made in UAE’ 100 per cent electric bus initiative.

Since the start of 2020, Emirates Global Motor Electric, part of Al Fahim Group, Hitachi Energy and Yinlong Energy have been doing the trial run with two zero-emission electric buses – a Dolphin series 12-metre, 34-seater bus for public transportation and another a vintage series 10.5-metre, 30-seater for shuttle service. The two buses have been manufactured at Yinlong Energy’s headquarters in China’s Zhuhai.

It can cover a distance of 95km after a single charge, that is, make six quiet and emission-free trips between the Abu Dhabi Central Bus Station and the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque.

The USP of this electric bus is the less than 10-second world’s fastest flash charging facility at bus stops thanks to Hitachi Energy’s pioneering Grid-eMotion smart charging solution.

Hany Tawfik, head of Emirates Global Motor Electric and Emirates Global Industries, said that electric buses will hit the streets by the end of 2022.

“We have been in partnership for two years now. It was by the end of 2019 that the buses arrived here in the UAE. We started driving the buses by the beginning of 2020. The trial period continued during the Covid-19 pandemic period,” Tawfik told Khaleej Times.

Using Al Fahim facilities the buses will be assembled in Abu Dhabi for a ‘Made in UAE’ product.

“This is a new initiative of making local assembly at facilities in Mafraq and the western region. The idea is to bring the components from global manufacturers like Yinlong and do the local assembly of the bus here so that we are able to get the buses made in the UAE.

"We are working very hard in line with the government’s strategy and vision of encouraging manufacturing in the UAE,” he said and noted that the entities are committed to the UAE’s initiatives to mitigate climate challenges as the country hosts COP28 in 2023.

The trial phase has seen the bus cover different routes of the city. Now, discussions are underway with the local transport authorities for a pilot plan, said Dr Mostafa Al Guezeri, managing director of Hitachi Energy for the UAE, Gulf, Near East and Pakistan.

“Electricity is the backbone of the energy system. We need to reduce CO2 emissions and be in line with the UN Sustainable Development Goals. So, once the trial run is over and the local authorities are okay with that, the pilot will hopefully start soon. The ITC (Integrated Transport Centre) is going to define the routes. The plan is to have a combination of fleet and flash unique innovative solutions," he said.


Fleet is a grid-code compliant and space-saving grid-to-plug charging solution that can be installed in existing depots and scaled flexibly as the fleet gets greener.

The objective is to charge a fleet of buses before it hits individual routes. Flash, on the other hand, enables operators to flash-charge buses within seconds at passenger stops and fully recharge within minutes at the route terminus, without interrupting the bus schedule.

“Grid-eMotionTM flash is the world’s fastest flash charging. When the bus comes at a bus stop, and while passengers are getting in and out, a connection is made in a second through a charging point. And in the next 7 to 10 seconds the charging happens. It boosts the level of battery charge by up to 70 per cent.”

The electric bus will take up to 20 minutes for a full charge at 360KW. The LTO batteries can operate between -40 degrees and 60 degrees and have a battery life of 25 years.

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