Optare has announced an increase in the range of its MetroCity and Solo EVs to 200 miles. The company claims to have achieved this without increasing the net weight, and without intrusion into passenger space. An Ashok Leyland arm, Optare, according to Alastair Munro, Engineering Director, accomplished this feat with the support of their counterparts at Ashok Leyland. Terming the range extension as a phenomenal technical ability, Munro mentioned that the phase-two of the plan will be a joint development between the two companies. According to sources close to Optare, the project to extend the range of the electric buses to 200 miles revolved around matching high performance motors and transmissions, and packaging of battery technology. With life costs a priority, work to convert the demonstrator, and the first of the six in-service Solo EVs to double their range has begun at the Sherburn-in-Elmet plant of Optare. The conversion is expected to be completed by June this year.

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