NINETEEN new double decker buses will serve the Bathgate, Livingston and Edinburgh corridor following a £4.4 million order between First West Lothian and bus manufacturer Alexander Dennis.

The order is part of a £50m deal agreed in April and was announced just days after Alexander Dennis was awarded a £7m grant from Scottish Enterprise as part of its £31 million low carbon vehicles programme.

The new Enviro buses have smart air conditioning and heating, while they feature Alexander Dennis’s latest technology, including CCTV, free wi-fi and USB (universal series bus) charging points, along with a real-time information system.

The deal reduces the average age of the fleet to four years.

Humza Yousaf, Scottish Government minister for transport and the islands, launched the fleet at The Centre in Livingston yesterday.

The new fleet will operate on services 27 and 28, on a route that conveys more than 1.6 million passengers a year and which has benefited from the Quality Partnership between First Scotland East and West Lothian Council.

Paul McGowan, managing director of First Scotland East, said: “These state-of-the art buses are an example of our commitment to developing services for local people on this important public transport corridor.

Colin Robertson, chief executive of Alexander Dennis, said: "We have collaborated closely with First West Lothian to deliver this fleet of state-of-the-art vehicles with a premium interior specification including high back luxury seating, ambient lighting and USB ports at all seats, all of which will contribute to a first class passenger experience.”

Earlier this week, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon was at Alexander Dennis’s Falkirk headquarters to announce the grant funding, and the creation of 100 new jobs at the site.

The company is investing in the development of hybrid and electric buses, and plans to double turnover by £1bn by 2020 through these vehicles.

As principal bus supplier to FirstGroup, the company is on track to deliver 204 buses to the transport firm.

FirstGroup has invested between £70m and £80m in its UK bus fleet in each of the last four years.