VDL delivers inaugural electric Citeas for one of Europe’s smallest countries
LUXEMBOURG The first seven Citeas Electrics for Luxembourg have been put into service by Voyages Emile Weber. They represent VDL’s first order for e-buses including charging infrastructure in what is one of Europe’s smallest countries. VDL says that at 9.9m, the buses are well suited to the specific demands that this area imposes with daytime opportunity charging (fast charging) via a pantograph or plug taking place in addition to slow-charging at night to enable optimum operation. As the system supplier, VDL is responsible for delivering both the electric buses and the charging stations, including installation, and for implementing the project.
Ard Romers, Director of VDL Bus & Coach Nederland, said: “The Netherlands now has nine EMobility implementation projects, making it a proven transition partner for efficient zero emission public transport systems. In addition, our clean and efficient electric vehicles are in day-to-day operation in several German cities. With this experience, we are a good match for Luxembourg’s ambition to make public transport sustainable.”
The VDL Citea LLE-99 Electric has been specially developed for less busy urban and regional routes so that those areas can also take advantage of zero emission public transport. Usually electric buses are much heavier than conventional diesel buses. A higher weight means fewer passengers and higher consumption. However, the VDL Citea LLE is known as the lightweight champion and VDL Bus & Coach has succeeded in keeping the weight very low for the electric variant too, achieving a reduction of up to more than 1,000kg compared with a conventional 12-metre diesel bus.
Voyages Emile Weber was founded in 1875 as a family-run business and since 2000 has been in the hands of the fifth generation. The first generation began by operating a coach twice a week on three routes. Nowadays the company has almost 1,000 employees and an extensive network of travel agencies and tour operators. It’s one of Luxembourg’s largest passenger transport and tourism companies.
The fleet comprises more than 450 vehicles, consisting of taxis, minibuses, public transport buses and luxury coaches. The Citea LLE-99 Electrics are being deployed for the company’s public transport arm and will operate under the name Autocars Pletschette.