Scania plans to test a wirelessly charged plug-in hybrid city bus in Södertälje, Sweden. The prototype bus, which is scheduled to hit the streets in June 2016, can be wirelessly charged at one of its stops via a charging station located under the road surface.
A six-to-seven-minute charging session delivers enough charge for a complete journey, according to the company.
“The main purpose of the field test is to evaluate the technology in real-life conditions,” says Nils-Gunnar Vågstedt, Head of Scania’s Hybrid System Development Department. “There is enormous potential in the switch from combustion engines to electrification. The field test in Södertälje is the first step towards entirely electrified roads where electric vehicles take up energy from the road surface.”
With a fleet of 2,000 buses, the city estimates that it could save up to 90 percent of its fuel costs if it converted to all-electric buses.
Apart from induction, Scania’s R&D department is looking at other electrical options, including overhead electrical wires and rails.
“Our customers have different needs and prerequisites when it comes to switching to more sustainable transport. Therefore we don’t want focus on just one technology. Instead we are continuing research in different areas,” says Vågstedt.