VDL scores its largest e-bus order in Europe so far


Norway’s Norgesbuss has ordered 102 electric buses from VDL Bus & Coach for use in Oslo. This is the largest order for VDL in Europe to date.

Specifically, it was agreed to deliver 83 Citea SLFA-180 Electric and 19 SLF-120 Electric to the Norwegian capital by January of next year. The new electric buses are to operate in the south of Oslo in the districts of Søndre Nordstrand and Nordstrand, as well as parts of Nordre Follo.

While the 18-meter-long Citea SLFA-180 articulated buses will be equipped with a roof-mounted pantograph, VDL will supply the 12-meter-long SLF-120 solo buses with CCS charging plugs. The manufacturer says that the buses will mainly be charged in the depot. In the Norwegian capital, 48 VDL buses already operate in and around the city: 40 examples – 30 Citea SLFA-180 Electric and 10 Citea SLF-120 – are already commuting in the service of Unibuss and another eight electric VDL buses at Oslo Airport.

The capital of Norway is pursuing ambitious climate goals and was named “European Green Capital” in 2019: by 2028, local public transport is to be completely emission-free, and by 2030 Oslo even wants to be the world’s first capital city without greenhouse gas emissions. According to VDL, around ten of the 1,200 city buses in service with the public transport company Ruter currently run on electricity. For its part, Ruter has contracts with bus operators such as Unibuss and Norgesbuss or Nobina. All cabs in Oslo are also scheduled to run emission-free as early as 2023.

The order from Norgesbuss is the largest electric bus order VDL has received to date. It is two vehicles more than were ordered for the Amstelland Meerlanden concession area a few years ago, according to the company’s headquarters. There, exactly 100 electric Citea articulated buses have been in operation on and around the Dutch Schiphol Airport since April 2018. In total, VDL says it now has nearly 800 e-buses in operation in ten countries.

VDL has also announced the next generation of its Citea electric buses for this year. They are to be unveiled in October at Busworld in Brussels. So far, the manufacturer is only revealing this much: the new bus generation will feature an innovative composite sidewall construction that is 15 per cent lighter than a conventional sidewall. In addition, the battery pack will in future be housed in the floor as standard. According to VDL, this will result in better weight distribution, more stability and higher passenger capacity. The company says that by choosing efficient components, lightweight construction, good insulation, aerodynamic design and optimal energy management, the vehicle’s energy consumption is reduced by up to 30 per cent. VDL plans to make more details about the new electric buses public in the coming months.

With reporting by Cora Werwitzke.



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