Rapid Bus is set to begin the first phase of its electrification programme this year, transport minister Anthony Loke revealed during Dewan Rakyat. He added that the initiative will be implemented in stages through two phases, with the second phase expected to commence in 2025.
As previously revealed by Prasarana president and group chief executive officer Mohd Azharuddin Mat Sah last year, the first phase will see Rapid Bus procuring a total of 100 electric buses, which will be deployed in the Klang Valley and Penang. The process will be made in stages, and is expected to be completed by the fourth quarter of 2024. Azharuddin also noted that 45 of these will be electric mini buses, while the remaining 55 will be larger ones measuring at 10 to 12 metres long.
Meanwhile, Loke revealed that phase two of the Rapid Bus electrification programme is expected to commence in 2025, with the aim of procuring 481 more electric buses after the completion of phase one. The entire acquisition process, he added, is expected to be completed by the third quarter of 2027.
“The effort to purchase electric buses of various sizes and technologies by Prasarana/Rapid Bus is aimed at understanding electric bus technology in depth before increasing the number of buses in order to realise the government’s desire to make Kuala Lumpur a low-carbon city as planned,” the minister said. “In addition, the government is also considering the possibility of purchasing electric buses through leasing to ensure that the buses received are always up-to-date with the latest energy technology developments.”
Prasarana and Rapid Bus initially trialled the use of electric buses back in April of last year, with a total of four buses deployed for a period of three months on selected routes. Apart from the Klang Valley, other locations in Malaysia that have begun embracing the low-carbon transportation system or similar includes Johor Bahru, Melaka, and the cities of Kota Kinabalu and Kuching in East Malaysia.
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