Sure, the upfront cost of an electric bus is higher than a diesel, however a new report has found in the long-run an electric bus will most likely make better economic sense.
The report, Electric Buses in Cities: Driving Towards Cleaner Air, was completed by Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF) and presented at a Financing Sustainable Cities Initiative held this week in New York.
Some of the keys point from the report include confirmation that, in the long term at least, choosing electric buses ends up being the cheaper option over diesel or even CNG.
A typical bus with a 250kWh battery charging slowly once per day at the depot and operating around 166km/day has a lower total cost of ownership than diesel ($1.05/km) or CNG ($1.19/km) buses at $0.99/km.
While the report says the biggest challenge for electric buses remains their high upfront cost compared to equivalent diesel buses.
An analysis of battery cost curves indicates that electric buses will reach unsubsidized upfront cost parity with diesel buses by around 2030. By then, the battery pack in the average electric bus should only account for around 8% of the total price – down from around 26% in 2016.
However, increasing demand for electric buses could bring battery prices down faster. In this case, electric buses would reach upfront cost parity with diesel buses by the mid-2020s.
You can check out the full report here.
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