Stagecoach Group is spending more than £80million on a fleet of 351 lower emission buses.
The vast majority of the vehicles to be introduced in the 2019-20 financial year will meet the Government’s Low Carbon Emission Bus specification.
The planned orders include 48 electric buses which are being part-funded by the UK Government’s Green Bus Fund and will go into service in Manchester and South Wales.
Others to hit the streets in England, Scotland and Wales, as well as on the company’s megabus.com network in the UK, will use the latest Euro 6 emissions standard engines.
Stagecoach admitted a small number of vehicles would not meet the current specification but insisted this was because of “specific design requirements that are needed for specific routes which affect the calculation used to meet the requirements”.
The company says most of the new vehicles will be built in the UK.
Each will also be fitted with CCTV and USB charging points, while most will have wi-fi to give customers free internet access. The new vehicles are expected to go into service this year.
The latest investment includes 131 low-floor double-decker vehicles to go into service across the UK, as well as around 95 single deck vehicles and 28 midibuses.
Stagecoach Group chief executive Martin Griffiths said: “This is a huge investment by the private sector in providing better mobility and better air quality in local communities. It follows other significant investment that we’ve made in smart ticketing, improved information for customers and digital technology.
“Delivering better bus services is a shared responsibility and it is absolutely essential that this commitment is matched by urgent action by local authorities to address the growing gridlock in our towns and cities.
“Without action on congestion, local people will not enjoy the full benefits of this investment and people’s quality of life, health and our economy will continue to be damaged by too many cars on the road.”