Volvo Buses has announced the latest version of its fully-electric 7900E single deck bus which the company claims has a significantly improved battery capacity compared to older models, offering extended range.
According to Volvo, the new 7900 Electric, which is available in with a battery capacity of between 150, 200 and 250 kWh, which offers a driving range of up to 200 km depending on driving conditions and the environment the vehicle is operating in.
Volvo claims that the emission free vehicle offers up to 80% lower energy consumption that a corresponding diesel bus.
The first models of Volvos new generation of electric buses are expected to become operational at the end of 2018.
Electrification of the bus fleet in urban areas is seen as a particularly effective way of improving air quality in towns and cities as older, particularly diesel buses, are found to emit a high level of air pollutants including nitrogen dioxide.
However, the range that the vehicles are able to run between receiving a full charge is seen as a potential barrier to further adoption of the technology.
Hkan Agnevall, President of Volvo Buses, said: This is a very important reinforcement of our electromobility product range, giving our customers maximum flexibility in their daily operations. During peak hours the buses can operate continuously without stopping to recharge. Instead, the batteries can be charged once traffic is at off-peak levels. On shorter routes, they can even run throughout the day and be charged at night.
As the demand for electric buses has grown very rapidly both in Europe and the rest of the world, it feels really good that we can offer cities an electric-bus system that provides better preconditions than ever to switch to sustainable, quiet and emission-free public transport.
Volvo Buses has previously identified electric buses as the future of urban transport, with Ulf Magnusson, the companys senior vice president having told airqualitynews.com acknowledging the technology as a potential benefit to air quality in towns and cities (see airqualitynews.com story).