From humble beginnings to a leader in electric and hydrogen powered commercial vehicles, the GBV story is one of innovation and perseverance. Continuing the legacy left by our founder, John Turton, we identify untapped opportunities, nurture the skill to develop solutions, and possess the determination to turn imagination into reality.
Founded over 48 years ago in New Zealand, the Company quickly developed a reputation for high quality construction and innovative bus designs. Our engineers understood decades before anyone else that electric drives were the future of transportation.
The Electric Bus Is Born
Starting in the early 1990s, the Company began work on the world’s first electric bus. Our engineers quickly realized that battery technology—lead acid at that time—would not allow an electric bus to complete a service day on a single charge. The solution was to maintain the zero-emission capability of an EV for extended periods while integrating an on-board generator (APU) to provide opportunity charging throughout the day while remaining in operation. By 1997, we produced the first successful range extended EV, sometimes referred to as a series hybrid, for use in the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games. The “Olymbus” is the foundation for our subsequent developments in EV design and technology.
On the international stage, our electric bus innovations did not go unnoticed. Buses were soon being exported to Hong Kong, Japan, England and Australia. In the years since the launch of the “Olymbus,” GBV continued to push boundaries, stay at the forefront of technology, and create the most environmentally friendly, highest performing electric, commercial vehicles in the world.