FRANCE RATP (Régie autonome des transports Parisiens) is trialling a Solaris Urbino 12 electric for two months. The project is closely linked to RATP’s plan to make its whole fleet emission-free by 2025. The objective, supported by Greater Paris transport authority STIF, is to give up traditionally diesel powered engines and the new bus is considered to be an interesting proposal for RATP and may be helpful in achieving that goal. It will be tested in regular passenger service on routes 21 and 147.
“The cooperation with RATP, including the test rides of the new Urbino 12 electric, is undoubtedly a challenge,” said Dr Andreas Strecker, CEO of Solaris Bus & Coach. “Our new battery bus will show its best side on the Parisian streets. The new Urbino is a vehicle fitted with plenty of innovative developments such as a third generation electric axle and a new, lighter bodyframe. Its pleasant and comfortable interior, not to mention its extraordinary design, will surely make a good impression.”
The Solaris electric bus that has arrived in Paris is based on the new Urbino construction which celebrated its world premiere at IAA, Hanover last year. Despite being lighter, it is more robust while being made from the same noncorrosive materials as before. The vehicle will be equipped with a 24kWh battery and a plug-in charging system. Solaris in co-operation with Ekoenergetyka will provide the operator with an external 80kW charging station.
A further innovation is the use of the newest ZF AVE 130 drive axle, in which two independent electric motors are mounted close to the wheels. It brings down overall weight even further and at the same time increases the space inside the bus that can be configured freely. Along with the Medcom traction equipment, the axle ensures an exquisitely quiet drive as well as smooth acceleration and braking. All these features make the new Urbino perfect choice for urban environments, even with a high number of passengers on board says the manufacturer.
There are 30 seats in the bus, including 16 that are pedestal-free. Energy-efficient LED lighting is used both inside the bus as well as for all exterior lamps. The ergonomic cab has a higher seating position that is said to improve interaction with boarding passengers and there’s an intuitive touch-screen dashboard. The widescreen is much bigger compared to previous Urbinos.