Scania has expanded its long-established partnership with Sweden’s cross-country ski team by providing them with a specially-adapted new bus in time for the ski season. Scania engineers worked together with the ski team to finalise a bus that meets the demands of safe, sustainable travel, as well as fulfilling the need for recuperation between training and events.
In developing the bus, Scania had safety and climate impact in mind, but it also had to have ergonomic and technological solutions that could help the skiers get more rest between the World Cup Series competitions. The bigger layout of the bus encourages team spirit, as the athletes and the rest of the team can now travel together.
“This bus is the latest in the range of transport solutions that have been developed in close cooperation with the Swedish cross-country ski team to improve the work environment for both the athletes and the rest of the team,” says Erik Ljungberg, Senior Vice President and Head of Communications, Brand and Marketing at Scania.
Considering demands from the athletes
It was during the ski competitions in 2018/19 that the first discussions about a new bus for the team took place. The skiers and their coaches discussed with Scania their needs in terms of equipment they have, and what is most important before and in-between competitions.
A key consideration was the issue of proper rest and recuperation between competitions.
“I had great discussions with the ski team, where I presented solutions to their demands. Together, we fine-tuned the design using their experience from different competitions. They were a major part of the process since I continuously sent sketches that they would comment upon and evaluate,” says Jan Richter, the Lead Designer for the project and someone who has 30 years of experience in creating custom-made products.
Focus on sustainability
The results are impressive, especially with regards to sustainability.
The bus, which seats 12 to 14 people, is equipped with solar panels that generate 1,000 kWh a year. These are used to power the LED lighting and other devices. To save on power-consuming heating, the bus is equipped with an infrared heating system. Compared with traditional convection heaters, this reduces energy requirements by 60 percent.
And rather than heating indoor air, the infrared heaters keep passengers warm while also warming fabrics for added comfort in areas for medical treatments and massages. There are also fans to dry wet clothing, a constant feature of competing in the snow.
“Sustainability is integrated in everything Scania does. That is why we have used sustainable solutions and technology that match the demands from the ski team when completing the bus,” explains Jan Richter.
Unique cooperation for an innovative transport solution
And Richter is very happy with the result of this unique cooperation.
“This new bus is adapted for the challenges of being on the road, making it easy to rest, prepare meals or work. Thanks to the great dedication of everyone involved, the bus itself became amazing. We all look forward to seeing it on the roads.”
Now the hope is that the bus will help the Swedish cross-country team conquer the pistes of Europe.
“Scania has once again created an innovative solution with ergonomics and sustainability as the main features, that will facilitate day-to-day life for the Swedish cross-country skiers. I hope this bus will be a real boost for the team this season,” says Erik Ljungberg.