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World premiere for Scania’s first ethanol-powered trucks − rapid transition to sustainable urban transport

After nearly 20 years as a supplier of ethanol buses, Scania is now broadening its range of ethanol-powered vehicles for urban traffic. Today the company’s first ethanol trucks are being unveiled to international trade journalists, who are test-driving the trucks in Södertälje. Starting next year, this will enable hauliers, authorities and municipalities to run both passenger and goods transport on the same renewable fuel.

Scania is working together with other interested parties in establishing an infrastructure for ethanol fuel distribution. Once the fuel infrastructure is in place, it will also be possible for smaller transport companies to invest in ethanol-powered vehicles.

Scania regards ethanol as the most cost-efficient renewable fuel currently available for urban operation, since it can contribute immediately to reducing carbon dioxide emissions. Scania has produced ethanol bus engines for close to 20 years. The technology is mature and viable for intense everyday city service.

Ethanol is as easy to handle as other liquid fuels. By its nature, it provides cleaner combustion, which means that not only carbon dioxide but other emissions are lower.

If ethanol is produced from Brazilian sugar cane, it provides up to 90 per cent lower carbon dioxide emissions than diesel fuel. Trial production from forest waste with integrated bioprocesses extracting heat or electric power indicates similarly high results.

Production of ethanol as an alternative to petrol is sharply increasing worldwide. The production infrastructure is thus already in place.

Mature technology

Scania has built 600 ethanol-powered city buses since 1989, supplying most of them to Swedish cities with impressive environmental benefits. According to Stockholm Public Transport (SL), there are no operational drawbacks as long as scheduled maintenance requirements are followed. The buses are completely standard, using regular Scania components.

Scania ethanol buses are now operating in a number of cities outside Sweden, for example in Norway, Spain, Italy, Poland, the United Kingdom and Brazil; as well as in China and Australia. Further deliveries are pending to Denmark and Belgium. Interest is growing rapidly in Europe, South Africa and several Latin American countries, while in the United States the ethanol market is booming.

Additional cities have expressed interest, not least since the Clinton Climate Initiative (CCI) declared Stockholm a model of what can be achieved and described Scania's ethanol buses as one of the best existing solutions to reduce carbon dioxide emissions from urban traffic.

Ethanol engine with diesel combustion

Scania's ethanol engines work according to the diesel principle (compression-ignition) and the efficiency of this third generation is up to diesel engine standards. The ethanol used for diesel combustion contains 5-7 per cent additives that improve ignition and lubrication. Passenger cars running on ethanol or an ethanol/petrol mix have Otto engines with considerably lower efficiency.

Scania is the only manufacturer to master this diesel-ethanol technology.

The new ethanol engine is an adaptation of Scania's 9-litre diesel engine with charge-cooling and exhaust gas recirculation (EGR). The engine easily meets the enhanced environmentally friendly vehicle (EEV) standard, which is slightly stricter than Euro 5 − the exhaust standard being introduced in the European Union in October 2009.

Performance is generous for a 9-litre engine. Power is 270 hp and torque a full 1200 Nm, resulting in excellent response and driveability.

For further information, please contact Hans-Åke Danielsson, Press Manager,

tel. +46 8 553 856 62.