Hybrid buses

Lothian Buses continues to invests in low carbon hybrid buses. 

The newest of these are Volvo 7900 hybrid single deck buses which were added to the fleet in December 2014.

We currently have 65 hybrid buses running on routes through Edinburgh and the Lothians.   

The hybrid fleet is made up of 15 Alexander Dennis Enviro 400 double deck buses, 50 Volvo 7900 single deck buses.

Over the last 4 years, Lothian Buses has invested heavily in diesel-electric hybrid buses with help from the Scottish Green Bus Fund

This year we will continue to invest in the fleet with the help of Scottlish Green Fund 5.

How it works

The new vehicles are diesel-electric parallel hybrids. This means that either a small engine or an electric battery can power the gearbox which then drives the wheels. The battery is recharged from the engine and through regenerative braking when the bus slows down.

The hybrid driveline makes the vehicle far more efficient. This means significant fuel savings and therefore a reduction in our carbon footprint.


These buses have a number of exciting features including:

  • Free onboard Wi-Fi: stay connected while you travel.
  • Alloy wheels: Reducing weight and reducing fuel consumption.
  • Stop-start feature: at many bus stops and traffic lights the engine will switch off and the bus will drive away purely on battery power meaning a much quieter ride for you.
  • Audio-visual stop announcements: to help if you are unsure of the route.

If you would like more information about the hybrid buses email environmental@lothianbuses.co.uk.


A smaller engine makes for steadier speeds and greater fuel efficiency than a typical diesel bus. Our hybrid vehicles will use at least 30% less fuel than the buses previously operating route 1 – cutting carbon emissions and other local air pollutants.


With engine-off at idle, the bus regularly operates without the engine running. This helps to reduce noise pollution on some of Edinburgh’s busiest streets.


The new buses have a sophisticated new gearbox and regenerative braking. So acceleration and braking are smoother, making for a more pleasant journey.