Hamburger Hochbahn—one of the biggest public transport carriers in Germany—has announced the list of potential suppliers of 530 electric buses to be delivered between 2021-2125. The approved suppliers are Daimler Buses, MAN and Solaris. The vehicles will be orderd in tranches over the next 5 years.
Daimler Buses will be providing the battery-electric Mercedes-Benz eCitaro and the new eCitaro G articulated bus. Hamburger Hochbahn AG received the first series-production model of the fully electric driven Mercedes-Benz eCitaro in November 2018 as part of an order for 20 eCitaro units. The company has ordered a further 25 eCitaro buses for the current year.
MAN can offer the Lion’s City E, which is also available in an articulated version.
Solaris is also offering two bus models: the Urbino 12 electric and the Urbino 18 electric. For Hamburg, both vehicles will be fitted with high capacity batteries Solaris High Energy+, motors will be integrated into the drive axle and the buses will be plug-in charged. Additionally the vehicles will feature thermal preconditioning during battery recharge.
Early in 2019, the Hamburg Senate decided that from 2020, only emission-free buses will be procured for Hamburg. On 29 August 2019, Hochbahn issued a Europe-wide framework tender for battery-electric buses, with plans to purchase up to 530 buses between 2021 and 2025.
In the years 2021 and 2022 alone, Hochbahn will purchase more than 100 electric buses are to be purchased, including 18m articulated buses. The complete electric bus fleet is expected to include more than 160 vehicles by the end of 2022.
The conversion of the entire fleet, which currently comprises 1,000 vehicles, should—according to the plan—take place at the end of the decade. The switch to emission-free buses entails additional financial costs. For these investments in the sustainable reduction of pollutant emissions, Hochbahn is aiming for a proportionate federal subsidy.
An important criterion for the vehicles is range. In the tender, the manufacturers must ensure a range of 200 kilometers (124 miles) for their vehicles. The prescribed range for the articulated buses is remains 150 kilometers (93 miles) due to their higher weight.
The tender provides for “depot charging” buses. However, offers are also welcome which, in addition to the depot charging, also enable “opportunity charging” (charging at the terminal stops) in order to increase the range.
Hochbahn has already gained experience with both processes in the past. The first series-production vehicles, which have been in use since the end of 2018, only charge at the depot. On the innovation line 109, however, vehicles are also used that are recharged via pantographs during operation using a quick charge.