Solaris has won a tender for the supply of 161 Urbino 12 hybrid buses, together with an 8-year maintenance service. The tender was issued by Opérateur de Transport de Wallonie (OTW), a public transport operator from the French-speaking part of Belgium. The vehicles will make their way to Wallonia in 2022. The contract is worth over €76 million.
As soon as next year, the cities of Namur, Liège and Charleroi will welcome low-emission Urbino 12 hybrid buses, ordered by OTW. The vehicles will be handed over to regional transport operators TEC Charleroi and TEC Liège-Verviers, with which Solaris has previously collaborated, and for the first time - to TEC Namur-Luxembourg.
“We are extremely proud of this large new order placed by Opérateur de Transport de Wallonie. Since 2017, we have delivered nearly 240 hybrid buses of this exact same type to the cities of Liège, Hainaut and Charleroi. We are very glad that even more public transport passengers in Wallonia will be able to use state-of-the-art, low-emission Solaris buses”, said Petros Spinaris, Member of the Management Board for Sales and After Sales.
The Urbino 12 hybrid units for OTW will be equipped with a modern and environmentally friendly HybriDrive series hybrid electric propulsion system. It helps to significantly reduce fuel consumption and pollutant emissions into the atmosphere, and all this thanks to the use of an electric motor next to a diesel engine. Moreover, the commissioned vehicles will boast a zero-emission function, i. e. a Stop-and-Go feature. It turns off the diesel engine completely when the bus comes to a rest at bus stops and the doors open. The vehicle uses at that moment energy recuperated during braking and stored in supercaps.
The hybrid Urbino 12 buses have been ordered with two-door and three-door layouts. The former will go to Namur, the capital of Wallonia (64 units), and the latter to Charleroi (58 units) and Liège (39 units). High-efficiency air-conditioning and a spacious and comfortable bus interior will provide for even more passenger comfort. The vehicles will also feature a video surveillance system and a passenger counting system.
The very first Solaris buses arrived in Belgium in 2013. Apart from the above-mentioned 240 Urbino 12 hybrid buses, among the buses already delivered to the country there are 32 Urbino e-buses that serve the inhabitants of Brussels.