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Brazil tests Scania’s ethanol buses in big cities

Scania supplied the goods when Brazil, for the first time, decided to test ethanol-powered buses. Two city buses from Scania will be rolling through the crowded streets of São Paulo and Curitiba until October.

The ever-growing problem with big-city air pollution combined with excellent local sources of ethanol are the reasons for Brazil’s decision to now test alternative fuels.

The buses used in these trials have been rented from Stockholm city’s local transportation company, which, with over 200 buses of this type, operates the world’s biggest fleet of ethanol-powered buses.

Brazil represents the biggest single bus market in the world with a total annual market of 17,000 heavy-duty buses, 13,000 of which are city buses. This can be compared with all of western Europe, with some 16,000 buses in all. Scania holds a strong position on the Brazilian market for long-distance coaches, commanding a market share of about 35 per cent.

"Scania’s biggest potential is to be found in the city-bus sector, where our market share at present is about four per cent," says Åke Brännström, head of Scania Buses and Coaches. "In Brazil, which is one of our most important growth markets, the trend is towards bigger and bigger city buses, which is positive for Scania. We are also leaders in the supply of ethanol buses."

Since a large part of the Brazilian passenger car population is running on ethanol, there is already an existing infrastructure for distribution of the fuel, which can be used also for the public transport system.

"Referring to the good experience from our ethanol city buses in Stockholm, we are confidently looking forward to the trials that now starts in Brazil," says Åke Brännström.

Scania is one of the world's leading manufacturers of trucks and buses for heavy transport applications, and of industrial and marine engines. With 22,200 employees and production facilities in Europe and Latin America, Scania is one of the most profitable companies in its sector. In 1996, turnover totalled SEK 33,700 million and profits after depreciation SEK 2,700 million. Scania products are marketed in about 100 countries worldwide and approximately 95% of total production is sold outside Sweden. Bus manufacture takes place in Sweden, Brazil, Denmark, France and Poland.