The global medium- and heavy-duty bus industry is beginning to respond to environmental concerns that are driving local and national governments to enforce stricter emissions policies. Governments worldwide are implementing legislation to improve overall vehicle efficiency and help make the air in cities cleaner. Fleet managers are always looking for ways to reduce operating costs, but must be convinced of savings potential before investing in new technology. Hybrid and electric powertrains have been under testing in real-world conditions for some years, and solid performance data is now available.
Due to recent strong growth in the consumer EV market, battery cell costs are coming down. Meanwhile, the ROI for hybrid and electric powertrains is more attractive than it was in the recent past as a result of lower fuel and maintenance costs. Overall, the battery EV (BEV) is expected to be the leading type of electric powertrain for buses through 2026. Hybrid drive is anticipated to grow steadily and fuel cells to begin to enter volume production by the end of 2026. Plug-in hybrid drive is expected to grow for the rest of the current decade and then see sales begin to drop off. According to Navigant Research, the global market for electric drive buses is expected to grow from about 119,141 buses in 2016 to 181,055 in 2026.
Navigant Research has released a report which analyzes the global market for medium- and heavy-duty electric drive buses for each major world region. Both of these vehicle categories are assessed for potential sales of four electric drive technologies: hybrid, plug-in hybrid, battery electric, and fuel cell. The study provides an analysis of the market and technology issues associated with electric drive buses, as well as the competitive landscape. Global market forecasts for annual sales, segmented by region and powertrain type, extend through 2026.