Scania and Scandinavian public transport operator Nobina have started preparations for a trial with fully autonomous electric buses to begin in 2020. Two Scania Citywide LF electric buses will be tested on a stretch of regular road in Stockholm.
Scania’s electric buses are to run entirely autonomously between Barkarby, a new residential area about 20 km from central Stockholm, and a nearby metro station. The distance for the road trial is about five kilometres, and the e-buses will first do empty runs with only a safety driver on board.
The development project has already started and the trial period is planned to begin in 2020. Throughout the trials, data will be collected on average speeds, uptime, on-time performance, deviation response and passenger satisfaction for example.
Initially, approximately one kilometre is planned to be driven autonomously. During the second phase of the trials, it is expected that around 300 passengers will make daily use of this service. The buses will halt at four stops, once the full 5-kilometre route opens. Scania and Nobina will jointly manage traffic and control systems for the autonomous buses.
The CityWide LF electric bus from Scania is twelve metres long and can carry up to 80 passengers. Different from other versions with opportunity charging, on the short stretch in Stockholm charging, will happen at the depot.