Wiesbaden operator ESWE Verkehr recently took delivery of the 100th battery bus for the city. A symbolic key was handed over by manufacturer Daimler Buses at a ceremony attended by Wiesbaden’s Mayor, Head of Transport Andreas Kowol and ESWE Transport Director Jan Görnemann. ESWE Verkehr is one of the first transport companies in Germany to have such a large fleet of battery-electric buses.
Mayor Gert-Uwe Mende explaind: “In Wiesbaden, the eCitaro battery buses from Mercedes-Benz have long been part of the cityscape. I am very proud that we are now able to put the 100th of these into operation, and that we will soon have 120 of them, making us one of the pioneers in Germany.”
Wiesbaden’s Head of Operations Andreas Kowol added: “Our battery buses are very popular with passengers. They are modern, quiet and ensure clean air. At the end of the year, a third of the bus fleet in Wiesbaden will be zero local emission buses. I would like to thank the colleagues at ESWE Verkehr for the effort involved in this conversion, and of course also the federal government for the funding, without which we would not have been able to handle the electrification in this form.”
ESWE-Verkehr Managing Director Jan Görnemann commented: “Today is a day that we can be very happy about, because today we are setting a milestone for emission-free public transport in Germany. But it is also true that we have reached our absolute capacity limit with our soon to be 120 battery buses and our ten fuel cell buses. ESWE Verkehr needs more space for buses and infrastructure. So we first have to create the further prerequisites in order to be able to further electrify our fleet in the future. And we have to accept that this will take some time.” As a result, the operator is not currently planning to purchase any further battery buses.
Jan also noted the good relationship with the manufacturer: “We have a reliable partner at our side who not only supplies us with the vehicles, but also made a significant contribution to the implementation of the charging infrastructure and our new depot management,” he said.
After delivery of the total order of 120 battery single-deck buses at the end of 2022, ESWE Verkehr will have 310 buses in its fleet. Together with the 10 fuel cell buses, more than a third of the vehicles in the Wiesbaden network will then be emission-free. The operator received a grant of €44.8 million from the Federal Ministry of Economics and Climate Protection for the purchase of the battery buses and for the construction of the charging infrastructure, covering 80% of the additional costs incurred when buying a battery bus compared to a diesel buses.