Electric buses approach series readiness

Daimler Buses has announced to start manufacturing electric versions of its widespread Citaro buses as early as 2018. Will there be battery electric or fuel cell? The simple answer: both.

Electric driving is not only for passenger cars. Actually, urban transport with its frequent stops makes electric powertrains appear ideal for this kind of traffic. Zero local emission is welcome bonus feature, and since the buses are in their off-duty periods regularly parked on business premises with charging infrastructure, the charging problem is less relevant than for passenger car owners.

These facts have inspired Daimler Buses to further develop and offer electric versions of its Citaro city bus product line. Both the E-CELL battery electric version and the F-Cell hydrogen fuel cell version are based on a common electromobility platform. Daimler’s roadmap calls for series maturity by 2018.

With regards of technology development, Daimler Buses benefits from its integration into the Daimler group, because on the way to emission-free driving, all Daimler subsidies collaborate, the company said. The same holds true for the integration of the B2E electronics platform into the Citaro. Besides the Advanced Emergency Brake System AEBS, the buses are equipped with an emergency brake assistant that can perform full emergency braking if necessary. Other innovative electronic features for the Citaro buses are an improved Human-Machine Interface that includes a large colour display.

Daimler already has developed a fuel cell version of is Mercedes B-Series compact passenger car. In a large road test, a small fleet of these cars already have surrounded the world. According to the company, fuel cell drive is basically ready for series production. However the lack of a hydrogen filling infrastructure still signalises red light for series production.

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