Twelve Citywide hybrid buses have been manufactured in Scania’s factory in Słupsk, Poland, and delivered to the customer, Vårgårdabuss. The Swedish bus company has about 60 buses in its fleet, including the purchased models of the first hybrids. The buses will be operated in Alingsås in the service of transport agency Västtrafik, and so need to be able to meet high demands for fuel efficiency.
An electric future
Joakim Claesson is a co-owner of Vårgårdabuss. “Electric power is the future, so it’s good to be able to start as soon as possible,” he says. “Everyone is going to be doing this.”
The new hybridised version of the Scania Citywide, featuring low-floor entry, is well suited for both inner city and suburban runs at speeds of up to 100km/h. From the driver’s point of view, there’s very little difference between the hybrid and a traditional diesel.
“The hybrid could possibly be experienced as gentler to drive,” says Peter Björk, Managing Director of Scania in Słupsk.
Critical role for drivers
The bus features a display that during operation shows stars as confirmation that the driver is driving in a fuel-efficient manner. “This works as a guide, but the drivers themselves need to know the best way to reduce fuel consumption,” says Björk.
He notes that driver training is important for saving fuel, even when it comes to hybrids. “The driver’s impact on fuel consumption is significant,” he says.
According to Björk, the biggest challenge with development and production is continually exceeding past efforts.
“The next bus should always be the best we have built,” he says. “The product that we deliver is a part of the reason that the customer comes to us the next time they need a bus.”