Scottish bus operator to have 68-strong electric fleet ahead of Glasgow's Cop26

Scottish bus operator McGill’s expects to have a fleet of almost 70 electric buses running before the planned Cop26 event in Glasgow this autumn.

The firm has announced a £15 million investment in 33 all-electric buses through an order with manufacturer Pelican Yutong.

The latest deal comes in addition to a £17.5m investment announced last month with Pelican Yutong for 22 vehicles and with Alexander Dennis Limited (ADL) for 12 double-deck buses and 1 single-deck vehicle.

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As part of its investment into green transport, McGill’s has also ordered further electrical charging infrastructure for its depot in Inchinnan.

In this latest order, 33 new buses have been ordered by McGill’s from manufacturer Pelican Yutong.
In this latest order, 33 new buses have been ordered by McGill’s from manufacturer Pelican Yutong.

The firm said the new buses and infrastructure would be delivered in the second half of this year, in advance of the Cop26 conference. Its investment is aided by the Scottish Ultra Low Emission Bus Scheme. The operator is also in “advanced talks” with a variety of partners to bring 12 hydrogen buses into the business in the next 12 months.

James Easdale, co-owner and chairman of McGill’s Group, said: “We’re thrilled to be making this further investment which will bring our total fleet of all-electric vehicles in the west of Scotland and Dundee to 68.

“Notably, these will be delivered before Cop26, significantly in advance of other operators who have placed orders. We have a strong record of investment in McGill’s and this will continue in years to come.”

Sandy Easdale, co-owner of McGill’s Group, said: “McGill’s is fully committed to playing our part in creating a clean and sustainable public transport system to ensure more people see buses as a great alternative to taking the car.

“This can help reduce congestion and emissions whilst tackling climate change. We led the charge on introducing clean diesel Euro VI fleet and by the end of 2021, the McGill’s Group will operate more electric buses than any other operator in Scotland.”

With roots stretching back to the 1930s, McGill’s has depots in Greenock, Inchinnan, Johnstone and Coatbridge. In late 2020, the firm purchased Xplore Dundee from National Express.

Chief executive Ralph Roberts added: “The enhanced passenger features, with air conditioning and USB charging, coupled with a whisper quiet journey will bring a new level of passenger experience.”

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