Switch is a clean energy based mobility solutions provider known for its portfolio across various markets
Switch is known for its mobility solutions that run on clean energy. The company wants the world to “Switch” to clean energy as the effects of increased pollution are starting to pop up decades ago. Even in India, Switch provides electric mobility by launching electric versions of Ashok Leyland Dost and Bada Dost LCVs.
Recently, Switch has made it to the news multiple times as Brihanmumbai Electric Supply and Transport (BEST) had inducted 900 double-decker buses. This was done in an attempt to bring back the aura of Mumbai’s iconic double-decker buses. But with a modern twist, as they are fully electric. Even though Tata electric buses and a few others exist, none of them are double decker.
Switch Double Decker Electric Bus
Then Tourism and Environment minister Aditya Thackeray had announced that Mumbai’s iconic red double-decker buses would be brought back to life with modernity and in EV form. To make this grand comeback for red double decker buses in Mumbai, BEST had planned to induct 900 electric buses from electric mobility solutions provider Switch.
The plan was to induct more at a later time and also to implement double-decker buses in other Maharashtrian cities too. Switch Mobility is yet to launch its new electric double-decker bus in India. Ahead of launch, a Switch electric double decker bus has been spotted on Mumbai roads. Like Mumbai’s iconic double-decker, this is also red in colour. Take a look at Suraj Wadekar’s Twitter post below, showing Mumbai BEST Double Decker Electric Bus.
Spotted Mumbai's new BEST Double Decker Bus! #BEST #DoubleDecker@myBESTBus @chaloapp @m_indicator @mumbaitraffic @RidlrMUM @traffic_mumbai pic.twitter.com/q5qLIxXrmi
— Suraj Wadekar (@WadekarSuraj) August 17, 2022
But unlike Mumbai’s iconic double-decker buses of yesteryears, this new one is a lot different. For starters, it is air-conditioned which the old ones were not. Also, Switch’s double decker bus is fully electric unlike the gas-guzzler that was the old one. Switch calls it Metrodecker and is an urban mobility solution.
But the one that will run in India, will be slightly different from the global model. It has a few changes to its exterior body and the powertrain is highly likely to be the same as that of the global model. Let’s check out the specs on this tall boy.
Specs & Features
Metrodecker comes in two variants, MD10,500 which is 10,500mm long and 5,350mm wheelbase. Whereas, MD11,140 is 11,140mm long with a 6,000mm wheelbase. Both of them are 2,500mm wide and 4,310mm tall. I am a little concerned as to how such a tall vehicle will fare in an Indian city like Mumbai, where encroachment is not often regulated.
MD10,500 can seat 63 people and MD11,140 can seat 84. But more than 94 people can travel at once too. Coming to its massive powertrain, it gets a gargantuan 325 kWh battery pack which is capable of 335 bhp of peak power and even astonishing is 22,000 Nm of peak torque unleashed at 0 RPM via a ZF sourced AVE130 hub motor axle. We thought electric Hummer’s 15,500 Nm torque was bonkers. But here we go.
Switch Double Decker Electric bus’ powertrain is capable of covering 240 km of claimed range in a single charge with HVAC turned on. After its battery is depleted, the onboard 44 kW AC charger takes 6 hours for full recharge. But with a DC fast charger with 100 kW to spare, charging times can take only 3 hours. Top speed is around 85 km/h. I would personally travel over 600 km to Mumbai to ride in this. Would you?