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KVB bus line 133 fully electric with VDL Citeas

On Saturday 3 December 2016, bus line 133 in Cologne was officially converted to fully electric. This means that from now on this bus line will be served exclusively by electric buses. VDL Bus & Coach delivered eight articulated Citea SLFA Electrics in preparation for this transition. Following an extensive test phase, the big day arrived last Saturday: Germany's first 100% electric bus line is now in operation.
Michael Groschek, transport minister of the state of North Rhine-Westphalia, travelled to Cologne especially for this memorable event. “The money invested in this project is well spent. Thanks to KVB's innovative policy, the residents of Cologne will see for themselves that electric buses are ready for everyday use and other passenger transport companies will be motivated to invest in this technology,” says Michael Groschek.
“KVB is one of the front runners in the field of E-Mobility. Pioneers are needed to actually roll out new technologies. We are therefore particularly proud of the fact that we have been able to work with KVB to make this happen,” says Rémi Henkemans, managing director of VDL Bus & Coach.



© Jörg Heupel


Public transport in Cologne
Electric mobility is an important development in public transport. Metropolitan electric bus transport contributes to a cleaner environment, lower energy consumption and a quieter and healthier environment. KVB sees plenty of opportunities for the future of electric mobility and mainly focuses on zero emission public transport with a large passenger capacity. The advantages for climate change and the environment are being further developed by the KVB, making the company an important partner for the city of Cologne as regards implementation of the climate and environment protection policy.
A major step in the implementation of this policy has now been taken through the conversion of Line 133 from diesel to fully electric. According to data from KVB, replacement of the diesel buses with electric buses will reduce the CO2 emissions by approximately 520 tonnes annually. Line 133, with a length of about 7 km and 13 stops, connects the Cologne train station with the district of Zollstock.



VDL Citea SLFA Electric
The Citea SLFA Electric is fitted with a fast charge system using a pantograph. The pantograph is positioned on the front carriage above the 2nd axle, so passengers always have free passage near the doors. Charging is done at both final stops. The charging power is 250 kW and charging time is around 5-10 minutes. The batteries are fully charged at night.
Destination signs are integrated into the windscreen, rear window and side windows. The entry door is extra wide to facilitate entry and egress and promote passenger flow here too. Full LED lighting at the front, sides and rear provides optimal visibility under all conditions.
The electric Citeas have space for 43 seated passengers and 82 standing passengers. The passengers benefit, in particular, from the fact that the electric buses are much quieter compared with conventional buses. This significant improvement in travel comfort was already appreciated by the passengers during the test phase.

KVB
Kölner Verkehrs-Betriebe AG (KVB), the fourth largest municipal passenger transport company in Germany, provides the public transport in Cologne and the surrounding area. The fleet consists of 367 trains and trams and more than 300 buses. Some 3,400 employees ensure that everything functions on the nearly 60 bus, tram and rail lines every day. More than 850,000 passengers are transported daily.

Valkenswaard, December 2016


VDL Bus & Coach bv
Marleen van Zeeland
Communications
+31 (0)40 208 44 14
m.van.zeeland@vdlbuscoach.com

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