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Daimler Buses to offer CO2-neutral vehicles in every segment by 2030; eCitaro with Toyota fuel-cell range extender

Daimler Buses aims to offer locally CO2-neutral vehicles based on batteries and hydrogen in every segment by 2030. The initial focus will be on the core markets of Europe and Latin America.

By 2039, only locally CO2-neutral new vehicles are to be sold in the core market of Europe. In the city bus segment, this is to be the case in Europe as early as 2030.

To achieve our climate goals, we need more zero-emission vehicles. We actively support public transport companies to decarbonize their fleets and provide them with the corresponding infrastructure. We have earmarked a total of 1.25 billion Euro for this purpose. Our goal: by 2030, every second city bus should be electrified.

—Volker Wissing, Germany’s Federal Minster for Digital and Transport

In addition to expanding its portfolio of CO2-neutral vehicles, Daimler Buses will also expand its service offerings as a general contractor for customers’ complete electric infrastructure.

Daimler Buses plans to launch the first all-electric inter-city bus from 2025 and coaches with hydrogen-based fuel cell drive from the end of this decade. In line with the dual-track strategy of its parent company Daimler Truck, Daimler Buses is focusing on both battery-electric and hydrogen-based technologies—the only way to offer tailored zero-emission solutions for the diverse needs of its customers, the company says.

We want to offer locally CO2-neutral powertrains for each of our segments in our most important markets by 2030 and therefore make a clear commitment: from 2030 at the latest, we will only offer CO2-neutral new vehicles in the city bus segment in Europe and will not invest in Euro VII technology. We are focusing our development efforts entirely on the zero-emission and fully electrically powered eCitaro.

We take a holistic view of electrification and go far beyond the vehicle itself. We supply our customers with electric mobility on a turnkey basis, which means they get from us all the modules they need for a functioning electric bus service: We supply the buses, we plan the necessary infrastructure as well as the charging management, we manage the conversion of the depot and we train the staff. Our goal is for electromobility to become an everyday reality in the bus business.

—Till Oberwörder, Head of Daimler Buses

Starting in 2023, Daimler Buses will also equip its previously purely battery-electric Mercedes-Benz eCitaro city bus, which has been in series production since 2018, with a hydrogen-based fuel cell as a range extender in both solo and articulated models.

Ecitarore

Daimler Buses is thus adding a vehicle with a range of up to 400 kilometers (solo bus) to its all-electric product portfolio in the city bus segment. As a range extender variant, the powerful and locally CO2-neutral low-floor bus covers even demanding routes and nearly 100% of all transport operators range requirements.

Toyota is supplying the fuel-cell module. The TFCM2-F-60 is a second-generation flat-type module that produces 60kW power and can be easily integrated into the roof of the bus, alongside the battery and hydrogen tanks. The combination of the battery and the fuel cell as a range extender eliminates the need for intermediate charging on-the-go.

TME engineers will support the overall design of the system and the integration of the module into the bus to ensure optimum efficiency, power and service life. The heavy-duty unit’s efficiency results in a comparatively low consumption of hydrogen relative to the power generation. With an integrated voltage converter, the TFCM operates in a voltage range of 450 to 700 volts and most efficiently at around 30kW.

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The Mercedes-Benz eCitaro G Range Extender will feature an NMC 3 battery (98 kWh per pack), fuel cell range extender, hydrogen tanks, 2 x electric hub motor, 2 x 125 kW, 2 x 485 N·m. The fuel cell module is a second-generation unit from Toyota.


The eCitaro Range Extender is still clearly designed for use as a city bus. The drive system continues to be based on the very powerful battery, while the fuel cell serves purely to extend the range and not as the main energy source. The vehicle is thus an all-electric hybrid bus that combines both power sources. The hydrogen is used in gaseous form at a pressure of 350 bar.

In addition, Daimler Buses will offer the eCitaro with a new generation of high-performance batteries from the end of 2022. The high-energy lithium-ion batteries increase the capacity per battery cell by around 50% for the same weight and enable reliable ranges of around 280 kilometers (solo bus). The batteries will be used in both the eCitaro, the eCitaro Range Extender and the recently launched all-electric chassis eO500U from Brazil.

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Lithium-ion battery NMC 3 from Akasol


The eCitaro is a successful model from Daimler Buses—more than 600 eCitaro are now in daily use by European customers. In 2021, almost every second all-electric city bus newly sold in Germany came from Daimler Buses.

Daimler Buses offers its customers a complete system for the all-electric eCitaro, which includes project planning and consulting services for the smooth operation of an electric fleet as well as the complete construction of the power supply infrastructure. This also includes the corresponding construction measures, which are offered on a turnkey basis if required. On request, transport companies can thus obtain a coordinated overall package comprising bus, power and charging infrastructure as well as suitable software, digital services, appropriate training for staff and aftersales from a single source.

In particular, the charging management of battery-electric buses is crucial for smooth everyday operations for customers. Here, with the recently announced strategic partnership with IVU Traffic Technologies AG, Daimler Buses has supplemented its portfolio with fleet control software specifically tailored to the eCitaro with regard to charging management. (Earlier post.)

Electric chassis for Latin America. Daimler Buses is driving electrification forward worldwide: production of the first purely battery-electric bus chassis from Daimler Buses for Latin America and markets in the Oceania region, which has been specially adapted to local requirements, will start this year. The eO500U chassis with a range of around 250 kilometers will be manufactured at the São Bernardo do Campo site in Brazil and is largely based on the technology of the eCitaro.

Daimler Buses has already taken 100 orders for the chassis in its main Latin American market of Brazil. Delivery is scheduled for between the end of 2022 and the beginning of 2023.

Comments

mahonj

It strikes me that what you need is a trolleybus / battery bus hybrid.
Thus, you could have power wires out near the termini and leave the city center clear.
This would have the twin advantage of needing much less battery capacity and eliminate/reduce end of route charging times.
You would have to make the system able to hook on and hook off the wires automatically, and keep tall vehicles away from them, but it looks like a win-win to me.

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