|The fuel cell Citaro|
DaimlerChrylser has had 30 Mercedes-Benz Citaro city buses with fuel-cell drive in operation in Europe within the framework of the CUTE fuel-cell bus project since 2003; three more are in service every day in Australia.
Together, these 33 buses have clocked up a total of 70,000 operating hours and passed the mark of one million kilometers (621,500 miles)—the most operating experience of any trial of fuel-cell buses to date.
The buses have convincingly demonstrated the reliability and robustness of fuel-cell drive in various climatic zones and topographies. They have withstood the winter cold of Reykjavik and Stockholm as well as the heat of Madrid. They have performed well in flat terrain as well as with gradients of up to eight percent in Oporto and Stuttgart.—Prof. Herbert Kohler, Head of the Vehicle Body and Drive Systems Directorate and DaimlerChrysler Environmental Officer
At the end of 2001, DaimlerChrysler together with the major European cities of Amsterdam, Barcelona, Hamburg, London, Luxembourg, Madrid, Oporto, Stockholm and Stuttgart and various infrastructure companies started the CUTE project (Clean Urban Transport for Europe). Three more buses are on the road as a part of the ECTOS project (Ecological City Transport System), also supported by the EU, and another three buses are operating in Perth, the capital of Western Australia. Before the end of this year, three more Mercedes-Benz Citaros with fuel-cell drive will be in service on the streets of Beijing. The first part of the project will be completed by the end of 2005.
The Citaro buses use a 200-kW fuel cell system and drive motors and storage tanks on the roof. The buses accommodate 70 passengers and have a range of about 200 kilometers (124 miles) with a top speed of 80 kilometers per hour (50 mph).
Seven 150-liter tanks on the roof store 21 kg of hydrogen at a pressure of 300 bar.