Repowering specialist’s vision for transport transformation

Hayley Everett

How one repowering specialist plans to enable all modes of transport transition from diesel to electric.

It’s no secret that emissions from diesel vehicles degrade our air quality, but this can be significantly worse inside buses, particularly harming passengers such as children who are more vulnerable to the health impacts of poor air quality. Greenhouse gas emissions must peak before 2025 to avoid unleashing far more catastrophic climate impacts than what we are currently seeing, including more frequent and severe droughts, heatwaves and rainfall. Electrification has been highlighted as the most viable way to decarbonise transport and achieve zero tailpipe emissions to deliver on this goal. Repowering accelerates this transition as a more affordable and cost-effective way for businesses to electrify their fleets.

Expert repowering company KleanBus has undergone a business expansion with the launch of its umbrella company, KleanDrive, which extends its repowering scope to supply electric powertrains into current and new commercial vehicles beyond buses. Armed with its advanced ePowertrain module, KleanDrive will offer its ‘game-changing’ electrification technology across the entire transportation industry to enable the repowering of light commercial, heavy duty, marine and off-highway vehicles.

“The launch of KleanDrive is a natural evolution of our business and innovative technology, reflecting our forward-thinking approach and our commitment to explore new opportunities that extend beyond the bus industry,” says Joe Tighe, KleanDrive’s CEO. “This is the next step on our journey where our primary goal remains unwavering: to accelerate the transition to zero-emission vehicles for the betterment of our planet and all its inhabitants.”


Since 2021, KleanDrive’s novel repowering technology has been a revelation in transforming heavy polluting diesel buses to electric. Now, it will enable clients from all transport applications to replace diesel engines with its advanced ePowertrain module solution for a fully electric powertrain that represents the quickest and most cost-effective path to a zero-emission fleet. The technology is created from locally-sourced components and is tailored – where feasible – to meet the unique needs of each customer’s application.

The repowering process begins with a vehicle assessment for suitability, followed by a detailed engineering feasibility study. This covers duty cycle requirements, topography, operational requirements and restrictions, charging infrastructure considerations, future-proofing strategies and financing options. KleanDrive then essentially strips out the diesel engine and replaces it with an electric one, although the process is far more complex in reality. The requirements of the engine, transmission, steering, braking, electrical and other auxillary systems are considered before an initial electrified powertrain prototype is developed. When it comes to installation, vehicle chassis and body modifications are kept to a minimum size and each repower is purposefully engineered to fit the former diesel engine space.

Combined with an efficient upcycling and testing process, the ePowertrain module solution minimises disruptions and reduces operating costs to a fraction of those associated with buying and building brand new electric vehicles (EVs). This makes the technology an ideal choice for fleet operators seeking a swift and sustainable transition from diesel to electric, without the prohibitive costs.

“Our mission is transforming transport, and with our innovative repowering technology offering a quick, cost-effective and sustainable shift to zero-emission, KleanDrive is ideally positioned to be the go-to solution provider in response to the urgent need to decarbonise across challenging and high-impact sectors,” Tighe concludes.

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