The Rt Hon Dr Vince Cable MP, Secretary of State for Business, Innovation & Skills visited the Optare manufacturing facility at Sherburn in Elmet, near Leeds just a week after Optare announced its Euro 6 Solo SR and MetroCity diesel-powered buses gained low carbon accreditation for their low emissions.
Optare is committed to supporting greener travel in the UK and in addition to supplying low carbon diesel buses is currently the largest supplier of fully electric buses in the UK, with over 70 currently in service across the UK.
The visit included a tour of the factory where Dr Cable met staff and saw several buses in production, including Optare’s fully electric models and the newly developed MetroDecker, Euro 6, double deck vehicle.
The Business Secretary said, “Optare’s cutting-edge electric buses - fully designed and built in Leeds - are in demand across the globe and exported as far away as Australia, as well as being sold throughout the UK. I recently visited Optare’s parent company Ashok Leyland in India where I was impressed by the range of high-tech vehicles.
The government’s industrial strategy, developed in partnership with industry, is giving businesses such as these the confidence to invest over the long term and create high skilled jobs.”
The Optare factory was officially commissioned on a visit by Transport Minister, Norman Baker in 2011, and now employs over 400 people, exports its vehicles as far afield as South Africa, The Middle East and Australia, and has won awards for its market-leading technology.
Enrico Vassallo, CEO, Optare PLC said: “We were very honoured to welcome The Rt Hon Dr Vince Cable MP and to escort him on a tour of our facilities at Sherburn in Elmet. We were particularly delighted to be able to showcase the proven technology of our fully electric vehicles and our newly developed MetroDecker as well as explain to Dr Cable our achievements in both UK and international markets and our contribution to the local and UK economy. It was a memorable day for all our staff, and underlines what Optare has accomplished in recent years.”