Thiruvananthapuram: Kerala State Road Transport Corporation's decision to deploy newly bought electric buses in Sabarimala on a trial basis is turning out to be a big success.
This is for the first time that e-Buses are being deployed in the rough terrain leading to the hill shrine.
"The trial services of five electric AC buses in Sabarimala during this pilgrim season has been a huge success," the Chief Minister's Office said on Thursday.
"On an average, these buses covered 360 km a day. Rs 110 per kilometre was generated in revenues. The service was also able to generate a profit of Rs 57 per km," it said.
While the fuel cost of a diesel buses are Rs 31 per km, the electric buses cost only Rs 6.
The buses were charged during the night, when the cost of electricity is less.
Apart from the fuel efficiency, the buses also helped reduce pollution.
"These buses, which have been taken on lease for 10 years, will now be deployed for long distance services," the statement said.
The state government has approved a comprehensive electric vehicle policy, which aims to universalize electric vehicles.
The Kerala Automobiles, a state-run enterprise, is also trying to develop electric auto rickshaws on a commercial basis, it said.
The Olectra's eBuss K7 deployed by the KSRTC for the trials are noiseless with zero emission.
The electric bus has been successfully plying at high altitudes including Kullu-Manali-Rohtang Pass route in Himachal Pradesh.
The 9-meter air-conditioned low floor buses has 32 seats apart from the driver's seat.
It can travel up to 250 kms on a single charge in the lithium-ion (Li-ion) battery.
A full recharge takes 2-3 hours.
The eBuzz K7 has a regenerative braking system which enables the vehicle to recoup a part of the kinetic energy lost while applying the brakes.