To the sound of great applause, four purely electrically powered Mercedes-Benz urban buses were handed over to Reutlinger Stadtverkehr (RSV) on 29 November. At RSV’s completely new and purpose-built electric bus depot, Hermann Fröhlich, Head of the South-West Sales Region at Daimler Buses, and Dr. Jens Heinemann, Head of Private Customers at Daimler Buses Germany, handed over the symbolic key to Mark Hogenmüller, Managing Director of Reutlinger Stadtverkehrsgesellschaft mbH.
“As a public transport provider within the region, we want to take responsibility and have emission-free vehicles in operation. RSV has to show the example – we’re all very much aware of that fact,” says Mark Hogenmüller. The eCitaro buses will operate on Reutlingen’s number 7 route, which is the town’s first-ever E-line. The line concept provides for the eCitaro to be charged at the depot. In order to be able to completely cover the daily public transport requirements on this line, the vehicles receive intermediary charging during break times. To this end, the buses use the depot near the line’s final bus stop.
Herrmann Fröhlich: “Reutlingen is a good example of how the change in our mobility approach within public transport companies can work. In creating a new, purpose-built depot, RSV is already putting in place what it needs to fulfil the requirements of purely electric public transport for tomorrow. In supplying the eCitaro, we also wish to contribute towards their success in this field.”
Eight years ago already, RSV tested electrically powered buses in practical operations. The transport company can therefore look back on the multifaceted experiences made at the time, and is now putting in place concrete plans for four further vehicles for their number 8 line. In the medium term over the course of the next five years, further electric buses will be procured until the public transport network can be served entirely by emission-free vehicles. Mark Hogenmüller: “Besides the technical aspects of the vehicle, choosing the eCitaro also naturally involved thinking about service aspects. With the Mercedes-Benz Service Centre nearby, we should be fine when it comes to vehicle availability.”