TPER welcomed yesterday its first VDL Citea SLF-120 Electric, the first of a supply of 21 e-buses that was the subject of a tender awarded to the Dutch group. The investment – financed with national funds – amounts to EUR 10.8 million, including the supply of the 21 vehicles and the electric charging system at the city depot in Via Ferrarese. Once the supply will be completed, 13 e-buses will be in service in Bologna and 8 in Ferrara.

This fleet marks the first 12-metre electric buses in service in Bologna.

VDL electric buses for Bologna

The electric bus by VDL, equipped with 350 kWh high energy batteries, are 12-metre, three-door buses accessible to all: in fact, they are equipped with a platform to accommodate wheelchairs for people with reduced mobility, with a manually operated access ramp. On board there is room for 83 passengers, 34 of whom are seated.

As foreseen when the tender was awarded, VDL, in parallel with the supply of the new Citea, has provided a charging system, in collaboration with Heliox. The system is located at the TPER depot in Via Ferrarese and consists of two chargers with a nominal capacity of 180 KW each and 6 chargers with a combined plug-in charging system.

The system is remotely controlled through the “Web Charger Monitoring” system that allows monitoring and management of the status, timing and power of vehicle charging through software.

Overnight charging in the depot ensures that these vehicles can be recharged for an entire shift of daily service on line 28, the link between the city centre and the exhibition centre. By the end of spring, the service on route 28 will therefore be completely covered by electric buses.

The new buses – the first 12-metre electric buses in service in Bologna – can be widely used on the urban transport network thanks to the dual technological equipment that allows both overnight charging in the depot and so-called “opportunity” chargings during the daily service. The Citea buses are, in fact, also equipped with pantograph.

600 new buses in 10 years of TPER

The President and CEO of TPER, Giuseppina Gualtieri, said: “We had announced a 2022 characterised by new totally ‘green’ buses and with this supply we are guaranteeing a further turning point in the increasingly electrification of city services, in line with the provisions of the Metropolitan City’s plans. In the first ten years of TPER’s history, we have spared no effort in investing in the renewal of the vehicle fleet, with over 600 buses purchased, and in the technology to serve users, using both self-financed resources and ministerial funds for the renewal of the fleets made available by the Municipality and Region. With these electric buses we are consolidating our ecological strategy launched towards achieving the dual objective, with the 2030 target of having a fossil-free urban bus fleet“.

“Cities in Italy are increasingly switching to sustainable public transport. We are proud that TPER has called on our experience as a leader in electric mobility in Europe. Our more than 1,000 full-electric Citeas have covered almost 200 million kilometres in a large number of cities and regions in Europe, which is a clear indication of our expertise. This delivery of the Citea full-electric in Bologna demonstrates our ambition to play an important role in Italy’s transition to emission-free public transport,” says Massimiliano Costantini, General Manager of VDL Bus & Coach Italia.


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