TWO GERMAN ORDERS FOR THE ECITARO: 72 UNITS
Mercedes-Benz has received a for the company record-breaking order for the eCitaro electric bus. ESWE Verkehrsgesellschaft mbH from Wiesbaden (Hesse region) has placed an order for 56 eCitaro's, 41 of them to be delivered with the new solid state battery packs. Also the same week Verkehrsbetriebe Hamburg-Holstein (VHH) ordered 16 units of the electric city bus. For the Wiesbaden order Mercedes-Benz also takes care of the adaptation of the service yard, the equipment and setting up of charging infrastructure, as well as the charging management process itself.
Wiesbaden will receive the first ten eCitaro's already this year, and 41 buses in 2020. The first 15 eCitaro for Wiesbaden will be equipped with current-generation lithium-ion NMC batteries (lithium-nickel-manganese-cobalt-oxide cells), twelve battery packs with a total capacity of 292 kWh. The remaining 41 eCitaro will be equipped with solid-state batteries. Solid-state batteries have a very high energy density. In this case, seven battery packs provide a capacity of 441 kWh. Even in winter when faced with the difficult demands of using all-electric heating, the eCitaro can still cover more than 200 km according to the SORT 2 testing method. All 56 buses are charged by plug in the depot. The 16 buses for VHH will also have twelve battery packs with a total capacity of 292 kWh. In ideal conditions, the range can even be as much as about 280 kilometres.
For the Wiesbaden order Mercedes-Benz has taken on the role of general contractor, supplying the complete system including the construction measures for the infrastructure. The existing depot will be reorganised, modified and successively equipped with charging stations including building the transformer station for converting medium-voltage to low-voltage electricity as well as the installation of cables on the site. Charging management will be realised together with the Berlin-based partner company IVU Traffic Technologies. First of all, this involves assigning each bus a defined charging point upon arrival at the depot. Smart charging management ensures that all buses are charged with the necessary amount of electricity for their next trip. This also includes preconditioning, i.e. the temperature control of the passenger compartment and batteries. Vehicle servicing for ESWE's eCitaro buses will be carried out in co-operation with Taunus Auto Verkauf AG (TAV) located in the immediate vicinity. Ulrich Bastert, Head of Marketing, Sales and Customer Services at Daimler Buses: "Wiesbaden's invitation to tender shows the systemic challenges involved in the introduction of e-mobility."
The eCitaro's for VHH will have glazed side-wall segments around the standing area between the axles which give the passenger compartment an airy and more transparent appearance and lend the city buses an individual look in terms of character. Three double-width doors are there for rapid passenger flow at bus stops. USB charging ports for smartphones, a new seat upholstery design developed for the electric buses, and the wood-look floor covering all enhance the passenger compartment. As of 2020, VHH wants to buy exclusively locally emission-free buses for use in the Hamburg city area.