After a two year trial of one Volvo Hybrid, AAR bus + bahn have invested in a fleet of 13 Volvo 7900 Hybrids. The trial involved, among other things, testing of fuel consumption, meeting of time table, comfort of passengers and noise levels.
Mathias Grünenfelder, President of AAR bus + bahn, considers the investment in hybrid buses a good one as the buses will save diesel, and thus be cheaper to run. He sees the purchase as something beneficial both for the citizens and the environment of Aarau.
“With these vehicles we will save about 100,000 liters of diesel per year. So we achieve both good ecology and good economy”, says Mathias Grünenfelder.
A growing interest
There are nearly 60 Volvo hybrid buses in Switzerland and according to Jean-Pierre Roemer, Key Accounter Bus at Volvo Trucks Switzerland, the interest in this technology is growing.
“Our costumers’ experience with Volvo’s hybrid buses is that they are creating economic and ecological benefits as a result of substantial fuel savings and reduction of emissions”, says Jean-Pierre Roemer, Key Accounter Bus, Volvo Trucks Switzerland.
With the purchase of the 13 hybrids, Aarau is the first Swiss city with a substantial hybrid bus fleet, making it an example of environmental progress in the transportation sector. The Volvo hybrid buses were successively put into circulation between January and May.
Volvo’s hybrid bus runs entirely on electricity, quietly and emission-free, from standstill to a speed of 15-20 km/h. At higher speeds the bus receives additional power from a small 4-cylinder diesel engine running on biodiesel. The energy generated during engine braking is stored in the on-board batteries and is used to power the bus’s electric motor and auxiliary systems.
Largest supplier in Europe
With more than 1,000 examples of the Volvo 7900 Hybrid sold to 21 countries, Volvo Buses has, in a short space of time, secured the lead in the global market for hybrid buses and is currently the largest in Europe. Since Volvo Buses sold its first hybrid bus four years ago, the technology has proved to be very reliable. Operational safety is as high as for conventional diesel-driven vehicles.
The technology has continuously been developed to further reduce fuel consumption and emissions. Today’s Volvo 7900 Hybrid has 39% lower fuel consumption and carbon-dioxide emissions than a corresponding diesel bus. The introduction of a new engine for Euro 6 allows for fuel consumption to be reduced by up to 45%, emissions of nitrogen oxide and particles will also be reduced by 87% and 50%, respectively, compared with Euro 5.