De Lijn and VDL celebrate a milestone with a new delivery: since 2015, more than 1,000 VDL vehicles have been on the road
The long-standing cooperation between VDL Bus & Coach and the Flemish public transport company De Lijn has reached a new milestone. With the delivery of 24 new generation Citeas, part of a new framework contract, the milestone of more than 1,000 VDL buses operating under the flag of De Lijn throughout Flanders and Brussels has been reached.
It is also the first time that De Lijn has ordered the new generation of Citeas. This concerns the Citea LF-122 type in a two-door and a three-door variant. The new city buses from VDL Bus & Coach are entirely based on an electric drive train and have trendsetting features. The e-buses have a 490 kWh battery pack and are ideally suited for city and regional transport, offering a high level of service.
Contributing to climate objectives
Filip Malefason, managing director VDL Bus & Coach Belgium: “VDL Bus & Coach is proud to continue the transition to electric buses together with De Lijn. We are happy to use our knowledge and experience as an innovative partner in the field of electric public transport to contribute to Flanders' climate objectives. What is so special about this agreement is that we have reached the milestone of 1,000 delivered buses since 2015. That is typical of our good, long-standing cooperation. The new order will be produced at VDL Bus Roeselare, where the construction of a new energy-neutral facility for the production of our new generation Citea recently got under way.”
Visible across Flanders
The new generation of Citeas can be seen in Flanders from 2023. Ann Schoubs, director general of De Lijn: “Sustainability, and sustainable mobility in particular, is an important part of De Lijn's business strategy. We want to reduce our ecological footprint by investing in an integral greening of our fleet and a sustainable approach to our activities. This order for electric buses from VDL Bus & Coach is therefore a further important step in De Lijn’s greening process. We look forward to the delivery of these buses in the autumn of 2022 to prepare them for use in 2023.”
New generation of VDL Citeas
VDL Bus & Coach has become one of Europe’s leading players in the field of e-mobility. VDL has been active in the field of electric transport for over 25 years. Since the introduction of the first Citea SLF-120 Electric in Geneva, during the UITP Mobility & City Transport exhibition in 2013, VDL Bus & Coach has focused strongly on electric mobility.
In 2021, VDL Bus & Coach presented the new generation of electric Citeas. Starting from the VDL vision, a bus concept has been developed that is entirely based on an electric drive train and ready for the future, with zero emissions being a matter of course. Among other things, VDL Bus & Coach is introducing an innovative composite sidewall construction that is 15% lighter than a conventional sidewall. The battery pack is integrated into the floor as standard.
This year, VDL Bus & Coach has continued to make a name for itself as a leading transition partner on the road to zero-emission public transport. With a total of more than 900 electric buses in 11 countries, delivered between 2015 and 2021, VDL Bus & Coach has a market share of 20% in Europe. The 100 million electric kilometres achieved in February of this year represent a saving of more than 14.7 million kilograms of CO2 emissions.
VVM De Lijn
De Lijn is the Flemish government company that provides public transport by bus and tram in Flanders. About 3.5 million people use De Lijn's services one or more times a year. The De Lijn network has about 1,000 lines and 36,000 stops. All in all, the buses and trams make around 11 million journeys a year. The company's own fleet comprises about 2,250 buses and 400 trams. The private companies that operate on behalf of De Lijn account for half of the bus kilometres with their fleet. With over 8,000 employees, De Lijn is one of the country's largest employers. Private operators employ more than 2,000 additional people. As the main shareholder of the Blue-bike sharing bike, De Lijn promotes and supports combined mobility. Here, travellers can combine a bus or tram ride with a shared bike for the final leg of their journey.
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