Daimler Truck, Europe’s leading manufacturer of buses and coaches, plans to turn the page on diesel-powered city buses by 2030, aiming for a 100% electric offering that will rely, in part, on hydrogen.
The German group, which has sold some 600 e-buses out of a total of 18 700 units in 2021, only wants rechargeable urban models in Europe “by 2030 at the latest”, and wants “to stop inventing” in the development of diesel engines, it said in a statement on the occasion of its own ‘Daimler Buses eMobility Days” in Mannheim.
There will be a new series and updates for existing models to achieve this. The manufacturer has earmarked 1,25 billion euros for this purpose.
Focus on CO2-neutral vehicles
According to Till Oberwörder, head of the manufacturer’s bus business, “there is a clear political position” in favor of electric public transport. “We focus our innovative strength entirely on the electric and emission-free model,” Oberwörder clarified.
Daimler Truck plans to offer an electric intercity bus by 2025 and a hydrogen version of a long-distance coach by 2030. This year, it plans to triple its electric bus and truck sales after selling 700 units in 2021, three times more than in 2020, announced the group’s boss, Martin Daum.
In March, Daimler delivered the eActros, their first series-produced electric trucks.
New batteries and hydrogen fuel cell for eCitaro
Marketed in 2015, the Mercedes-Benz eCitaro, the electric version of the most popular model in the range, will receive the option of an additional hydrogen fuel cell supplied by Toyota next year, increasing its range to 400 km from 280 km today.
In addition, Daimler Buses will offer the eCitaro with a new generation of batteries from the end of 2022. As a result, Daimler promises reliable ranges of around 280 km for the solo bus, instead of the 400 km mentioned with the range extender.
Mercedes-Benz buses are part of the Daimler Truck Group, which was floated on the stock exchange in March following the historic split of the Daimler Group into trucks and buses on the one hand, and Mercedes-Benz cars, on the other.
Contractor for charging infrastructure
According to Martin Daum, charging infrastructure is “the biggest bottleneck” holding back large-scale expansion. Plus, an eCitaro model costs twice as much as a comparable diesel Citaro.
Hence Daimler Buses wants to support its customers from now on in the electrification of the depots. It will act as a general contractor for customers’ complete electric infrastructure. Until now, the group has only provided advice in this area.
Increasingly popular, e-buses have recently raised concerns after two fires involving Bolloré-branded models in Paris, leading public transport operator RATP to withdraw almost a third of its electric fleet from circulation.