Trackless Tram trial underway

20 November 2023

Australia’s first Trackless Tram is on the move, in a trial that the City of Stirling hopes will see this mid-tier transit become a future public transport service connecting Glendalough Train Station to the iconic Scarborough Beach precinct.

The 30-metre-long vehicle arrived at the City in September and is currently undergoing a range of tests by experts from across Australia. This research will be used to understand how the vehicle operates, the impacts on the road surface and what the ride quality for passengers is like.

A community event held in-conjunction with the Stirling Farmers Markets’ 12th birthday at the City’s Administration Centre on 26 November will also provide the local community with a chance to take part in the trial.

“It is really important for us to understand what our community think about the Trackless Tram as part of this trial,” Mayor Mark Irwin said.

“They will be the future users of this public transport system and we want to know whether this is going to encourage them to make the switch out of their cars and onto the tram to get from the City to the beach.”

The trial which has been funded by the Commonwealth Government will continue until the end of November, giving government and local business stakeholders an opportunity to examine how the technology may be implemented in the Australian context and what benefits it could provide.

Mayor Mark Irwin said that the benefits offered by the Trackless Tram could be a game changer for urban regeneration in the City and set a new transport benchmark Australia wide.

“A permanent tram route in the City of Stirling would enable us to achieve a range of positive economic, business, transport and sustainability outcomes – reducing congestion and improving access to employment and tourist destinations,” he said.

“During peak hours the current road network in the Stirling City Centre, including parts of Scarborough Beach Road, is at capacity, and congestion and parking around the Scarborough precinct is a challenge.

“The tram offers a real possibility of getting people to leave their cars at home and use public transport, reducing emissions and making it easier for people to get around. 

“A permanent Trackless Tram system could support urban regeneration right along Scarborough Beach Road, creating a vibrant and connected community. However, for this to become a reality it will require collaboration across community, business and government sectors.

“I would encourage everyone to get on board this new technology at one of the City’s Trackless Tram events to experience the benefits of this cutting-edge technology first-hand.”

The project is being delivered with partners Curtin University, CRRC, Shanghai Electric and Infrastructure Technology Solutions.

Events to celebrate the arrival of the Trackless Tram at the City of Stirling will include:

21 to 22 November 2023 – Net Zero Transport Symposium
Join us at the Net Zero Transit Symposium and hear from industry experts to find out how innovations in transport technology are enabling the transition to net zero emissions. This is a paid event – find out more and register here.

26 November 2023 – Trackless Tram Community Event at the Farmers Market, 8am to 11am
Fun free activities for all the family and take a ride on the Trackless Tram.



Fact file

The City’s business case is designed to answer the question of whether Trackless Tram – a hybrid technology of a bus and light rail – is in fact the best of both worlds.

  • Trackless Trams are a new sustainable form of public transport.
  • They run on rubber tyres instead of steel tracks and the ride is smooth due to stabilising technology in the suspension.
  • They are guided by a digital rail with sensors built into the road surface.
  • they are powered by electricity or hydrogen fuel cells and are a net zero emission vehicle.
  • There is also no need for overhead catenary wires or heavy steel tracks providing far better amenity for communities where they are implemented.
  • The Trackless Tram has many advantages over a bus:
    • It is a net zero emission vehicle, with electric charged batteries
    • It can travel at a speed of 70km/h and carry up to 150 passengers
    • It is guided by magnetic nails that are imbedded in the road, enabling a smooth ride similar to that of light rail
    • It has a dedicated lane, with priority at traffic lights making it more efficient than current public transport options
    • It is bi-directional, which means it has a driver at both ends and doesn’t need to turn around making access into Scarborough Beach trouble-free.
    • The tram has a flat wide floor, with easy access from station platforms and room to accommodate e-rideables, prams, wheelchairs and most importantly for Scarborough – surfboards!

Social Media Share this articleLinks below open in a new window

Back to news