Fully electric busses hit the streets of Heidelberg

Heidelberg electric busses

Heidelberg’s historic city centre is about to get a lot quieter after the public transport company Rhein-Necker-Verkehr (RNV) took delivery of three fully-electric Mecerdes-Benz city buses.

The busses are among the first eCitaro buses in the world, as the German manufacturer slowly starts production and sales. The current model is equipped with 243 kWh battery and is expected to cope with the requirement of driving around 200 km (124 miles) daily.

The busses will be deployed in Heidelberg between 09:00 and 22:00 and in Mannheim’s new Franklin district from 06:00 to midnight. The target mileage will be achieved with fast top-up charging during breaks in operation.

“The eCitaro is redefining conventionally driven bus transportation and is for us the symbol for future-oriented local public transport. That is why we have put together a comprehensive package comprising the vehicle, charging management and consultation with which we are supporting the transport company in its endeavour to electrify its buses,” said the Head of Daimler Busses, Till Oberwörder.

The busses were welcomed by Heidelberg Mayor Professor Eckart Würzner, who called them an important step for the city. 

“We are delighted that the eCitaro buses have arrived. At the end of January the first electric bus service in the region – our historic city service – can go into operation. This is an important step towards emission-free local transport and a climate-smart city. We hope that production of these buses will now really take off,” said Mayor Würzner.

His thoughts were echoed by the Technical Managing Director at RNV, Martin in der Beek, outlining the electrification of bus transportation as a clear company goal. 

“Our city trains have been serving the local public transportation system electrically for more than 100 years. Now, we must do the same for buses. The eCitaro will give our buses a completely new face and will literally provide for better air in the area serviced by RNV,” proclaimed Martin.