ZEVRAS helps ease transition to zero emission buses and coaches

Zemo Partnership EventZemo Partnership News

Fri 17 November 2023 View all news

The transition to a fully zero emission bus fleet currently looks likely to extend beyond 2040. One possible option to accelerate the transition is to replace the engine and gearbox in existing diesel buses with a new zero emission drivetrain, a process known as 'repowering'.  To ensure these ‘zero emission repowers’ meet high standards, Zemo Partnership was commissioned by the Department for Transport to develop the Zero Emission Vehicle Repower Accreditation Scheme (ZEVRAS) for buses and coaches to provide government and industry with confidence in the solution.

The scheme is now open to product and company approvals. The technical requirements of ZEVRAS have been designed around the initial requirement for a scheme applicable to M2 and M3 vehicles (buses, minibuses and coaches).  However, the scheme has been designed in a manner to allow its applicability to be expanded to additional vehicle categories in future. 

ZEVRAS - which is administered by Energy Saving Trust with technical support from Zemo Partnership - ensures that manufacturers of zero emission repower systems are approved through the scheme before the repowering equipment they produce can be added to the list of approved  solutions. 

ZEVRAS helps bus or coach operators to: 

  • Get a higher standard of repower conversion, including an energy efficiency test, battery safety testing and zero emission heating requirement.
  • Become eligible to claim the zero emission bus (ZEB) incentive from the Department for Transport’s bus service operators grant in England (£0.22/km) (only available for buses which are eligible for existing BSOG).
  • Enter clean air zones free of charge with repowered coaches and buses  
  • Transition to zero emission vehicles while investing in the residual value of an existing fleet. The residual value of a vehicle is an estimate of how much it’ll be worth when the lease term ends. Now, zero emission vehicles have a higher residual value than their petrol and diesel alternatives.  

The ZEVRAS register will contain  approved companies and associated zero emission products based on vehicle make and model.  

Manufacturers must get approved by ZEVRAS before they can be added to the list of approved devices available to vehicle and CAZ scheme operators.  Manufacturers need to have quality management systems (for example ISO 9001), adequate insurance cover, and comprehensive warranty provision to receive approval.   

A downloadable list of approved manufacturers and devices will soon be available.

ZEVRAS extends the Clean Vehicle Retrofit Accreditation Scheme (CVRAS) which enabled a range of emission abatement technologies to cut emissions on existing vehicles.

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