Stockholm To Test Hybrid Electric-Ethanol Buses

City expects to save 25% in fuel.

The Swedish capital is to introduce a fleet of electric hybrid buses into Stockholm's public transport system on a trial basis in 2008, Swedish heavy vehicle constructor Scania said on Feb. 21. "In collaboration with (Stockholm's) regional public transport company ... Scania will carry out large-scale testing of electric hybrid buses," Scania said. "The tests will begin during 2008 and run for at least one year," the company added.

Hybrid vehicles, which use both a combustion engine and electric motors for propulsion, are seen as an interim solution to the development of entirely "clean" vehicles.

In pursuing the trial, Stockholm will follow cities such as Montreal and Gatineau in Canada which run schemes using hybrid buses produced by Scania's rival Swedish constructor, Volvo.

Scania's hybrid bus technology "is expected to save at least 25% in fuel", according to Scania's research and development chief, Hasse Johansson. The vehicles' diesel engines are powered by ethanol, a renewable fuel.

Stockholm has operated about 600 Scania buses using ethanol since 1989.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2007

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