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2020 Mercedes eCitaro

Reference to the two pages Mercedes eCitaro of 2018 and Mercedes Citaro NGT of 2015.

Two major innovations, the solid state battery and the possible double charging speed. The first will make its debut when Mercedes not only offers it as an option but also delivers it soon. It consists of up to six modules on the roof and two in the rear, each with 9 CMB cells of 63 kWh. When fully expanded, 504 kWh are therefore possible. 250 km should thus be possible under favourable conditions and 195 km in winter times.

Mercedes mentions as an advantage for the solid state battery a one quarter higher energy density compared to the next generation of lithium-ion batteries with liquid electrolyte. It is also expected to have a longer service life. Accordingly, a longer basic guarantee than usual is granted. The video of the manufacturer below even assumes that there is no cooling and a much higher security.

However, the solid state battery is still considered to be too voluminous for passenger cars because it is said to require a lot of insulation at an operating temperature of about 80°C. For a bus, of course, no problem. It will be interesting to see whether the promises become reality. First publications of the weights per kWh speak rather for the conventional LIIo battery.

With reduced capacity, it will also be available on the eCitaro solo bus. In the articulated bus, it is even possible to have there an additional driven rear axle from ZF.

To increase the charging power from 150 kW to 300 kW, so-called pantographs are offered. They are available as stationary or mounted on the bus roof. The former only need a loading rail on top of the bus, but are more useful at the bus location. As you can see it in the pictures on the second bus from the left, quite a lot of work is required in the form of a passage with a steel girder construction.

A simpler, but on all the buses concerned more costly and time-consuming method of loading is to use a kind of lamppost. The pantograph on the roof of the bus approaches this pole at a height of approx. 5 metres and taps electricity of similar power as via the transport rail (picture below). Such a mast could be placed e.g. at terminal stations with longer waiting times of the buses.

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