Envisage Technologies, has worked with Switch Mobility to delivery its 4th generation SWITCH e1 bus.

The 12-metre-long lightweight electric vehicle was launched at the European Mobility Expo in Paris, taking centre stage as an exemplar of green mobility. Envisage Group’s Colour, Materials and Finishes (CMF) experts were at the heart of the celebrations after supporting the project through the integration of sustainable materials and a striking aesthetic. With zero-carbon buses the stars of the show, it provided the ideal stage to launch the SWITCH e1.

Thanks to its advanced NMC battery technology, the e1 is one of the lightest 12m buses in Europe with a range of around 390km from a 389KWh battery, allowing operators to improve efficiency and reduce lifetime costs.

It is not only e1’s technical credentials making it stand out from the crowd. Envisage’s design input ensured that its colours, materials and finishes are aligned with its sustainable ethos and help make public transport an appealing alternative for the European customer. The aqua and teal seascape aesthetic flies in the face of traditional bland bus design and ties in with a key sustainability theme of protecting our precious oceans. Envisage’s creatives took this a step further by selecting a SEQUEL yarn for the bus seat fabric made from 100% recycled polyester.

Persuading more people to get out of their cars and onto the bus remains a major challenge and Envisage began by conducting detailed consumer trend research to build CMF themes and concepts for the vehicle’s exterior and interior finishes. Switch chose the seascape theme from 15 different options and went on to integrate the recycled polyester seating fabric into the interior design.

Lauren Reanne Steele, Colour and Materials Designer said: “As well as ensuring designs and materials were aligned with sustainability, we had to create something exciting that would really engage with the consumer. From pastel flooring to metallic lilac handrails, we’ve not been afraid to do something different and create an inviting atmosphere by responding to the latest consumer trends.”

Switch Mobility’s Chief Marketing and Sustainability Officer, Peter Freedman, said: “Following COVID there is a big drive within the bus industry to return ridership to pre COVID levels. We wanted to develop an approach that appealed to the end customer to encourage the use of buses again. We also wanted to challenge the norm for the industry and look at using a suite of materials and colours not commonly seen on buses. Switch e1 was extremely well received by press and customers and we’re confident that the work carried out with Envisage ensured the bus was presented in the best possible manner.”