Being the pioneer electric bus manufacturer of Turkey, Otokar has extended its product range with the e-Kent C. Twelve meters in length, the city bus can accommodate up to 100+ passengers. The maximum output is 340 kilowatts (455 hp) with a maximum torque of 40,000 newton meters. The bus is powered by lithium-nickel-manganese-cobalt-oxide batteries from Webasto, providing 35 kilowatt-hours each. Up to ten batteries can be installed which have a total storage capacity of up to 350 kilowatt-hours. The battery modules are installed on the roof and rear of the bus to achieve superior center of gravity and vehicle dynamics while driving along curves. The range of the electric bus is more than 300 kilometers depending on the topography and usage profile. It can be charged from 0 to 100 percent in four hours, depending on the charging power of the charging equipment. In addition, up to 20 percent of the energy being used can be recovered during braking. Otokar plans a battery utilization cycle of ten years or equivalent 3,000 cycles.
Reliable batteries and support from Webasto
Otokar is very satisfied with their choice of Webasto as their battery partner. Erdal Usta, Commercial Vehicles Engineering Group Director at Otokar, explains: “Aiming to develop new equipment and applications to meet the changing requirements of our customers, has always been a priority for Otokar. Focusing on our customer needs when selecting our suppliers, the reliability and the performance of the product are most important to us. The batteries from Webasto are extremely reliable, enabling us to shoot right out of the gate with regard to potential tenders in Europe.”
Otokar, the bus market leader in Turkey for 12 consecutive years, is active in 50 countries with its buses, particularly in Europe. “Of course, price, a long-term partnership with our suppliers and reliable support are also very important for us. We have received excellent support from the engineers at Webasto even during the pandemic and are happy to have Webasto at our side for the e-Kent C. They will also be a trusted partner for us in terms of aftersales support, spare parts availability and warranty,” says Usta. Sebastian Fuchs, Product Manager Batteries at Webasto, adds: “We have a great collaboration with Otokar and we have learned a lot about commercial vehicle battery applications in terms of software and hardware development over the past months. Thanks to our well-established cooperation based on partnership and the modularity of our battery solutions, we can react on dynamic market demands very fast. This gives Otokar and all our customers a really great advantage.”
Safety and quality first
To meet all safety regulations and standards in Europe, Otokar has conducted diverse tests. Usta states: “We tested the electromagnetic compatibility because there are a lot of electrical components in the e-Kent C that have to function well in combination without disrupting each other. We also had to ensure that there were no negative impacts on the surrounding area, for example, radio interference.”
In addition, Otokar tested the structural durability of the bus chassis. The batteries installed on the roof and rear of the bus weigh more than two tonnes. “We had to be sure that the bus structure could carry the weight throughout its whole lifetime. We completed a total of one million test kilometers equivalent road-load durability testing to ensure the highest quality and safety at every point. We also performed several tests in different regions and climates to check overall energy efficiency for heating and cooling systems and subsystem thermal behaviors,” explains Usta.
The e-Kent C on the streets of Europe
“Kent” means “city” in Turkish. “We view the e-Kent as the future of transport in cities. We are currently in talks with Webasto regarding our future projects,” says Usta. Kerem Burhan, Key Account Manager at Webasto, adds: “We’re looking forward to new projects with Otokar. Until then we’re celebrating our first joint success: Thanks to the effort of both teams, the e-Kent C will soon be running on the streets in Europe.”
The e-Kent C is already in serial production. Otokar will participate in various events and will organize roadshows and demos in Europe within the following months. In Germany, the electric city bus can be seen at the IAA Mobility in September 2021 in Munich. The bus is driving on the so-called Blue Lane from one exhibition venue to the other. Passengers are invited to join the ride and experience the power of the e-Kent C.