Page 23 - Commercial Vehicle Engineer - August 2021
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The nine-litre Scania engine fitted to the first Fencer vehicles will be SCR-only and meets the requirements of the Euro VI Step E emissions standard. Paired with ZF's Ecolife 2 fully automatic six- speed gearbox, the vehicle can achieve substantial fuel savings compared to its predecessors, according to Scania.
The Fencer range will be available with a choice of renewable powertrain technologies with hybrid, gas power with BioCNG and BioLNG options. In addition, Scania's entire diesel offering can run on HVO without
any modification.
A battery electric version of the Fencer will be available to order this year. A new chassis will allow for an eight- or 10-battery pack set-up. This chassis
will also feature a host of mechanical revisions, new electrics and ECU, new independent front suspension and a new rigid front axle for improved passenger capacity load capacity and turning radius as well as increased comfort
and aisle width.
“The decision to launch with a Euro VI
diesel was to prove the bodywork with our much established nine-litre diesel powertrain in the first instance,” explains West. “We still have much interest from the market for clean, efficient Euro VI and we expect this to be the case for some years to come, particularly in servicing the rural community where BEV is struggling right now to meet the range and commercialities to enable fleet replacements in required volumes to offer modern, environmentally beneficial upgrade to older diesel emission buses.”
West adds that there has been interest in alternative powertrains such as electric, hydrogen and biogas. “Biogas has offered a fantastic ‘well to wheel’ benefit to the likes of Nottingham, Reading and First Group and has had major influence on reducing CO2 emissions,” he says. “Also, the simplicity and commerciality of biogas has been a massive benefit and has enabled a smooth operating transition from standard diesel fill to gas.
“As the need to accelerate the decarbonisation of the B&C vehicle parc increases and the date for diesel sales is consulted on and is defined, the choice of alternative power will be an interesting one in the coming decade.
“There is still much to be learnt by the industry and it has to do this together to ensure that net zero is met, passengers have a service that is right for them, operators, local authorities and suppliers have that long-term view from policy makers so that they can work together to develop, purchase and operate the equipment in a commercial and profitable way (and dispose of it down the chain in a sustainable manner too).”
Which drivetrain eventually wins out among operators will probably be driven by the commercial nature of their purchases, West adds. “As you would expect. The cost and commercialities will greatly depend on funding models and for what technologies. Future legislated requirements for where buses and coaches may operate (CAZ and ULEZ being a current example) with what emission status have caused the industry major difficulty in the last decade and a clear roadmap well into the future is a necessity to enable long-term investment planning. The vehicles are such massive investments, so knowing their operational life is secure and a way out at the end of life is paramount.”
Wrightbus' Streetdeck Electroliner
Neil Collins, managing director
of Northern Irish bus manufacturer Wrightbus, agrees that the foreseeable future it will be a mixture of hydrogen and battery electric buses and coaches on the road, which will help operators to meet zero emission targets.
To that end, Wrightbus is now manufacturing battery electric and hydrogen powered zero-emission buses. The company, rescued from administration by Jo Bamford in October 2019, has turned its performance around and is
now a confidence presence in the market, demonstrated by the launch last month of its StreetDeck Electroliner.
The Electroliner is the first electric vehicle from Wrightbus – the company
has previously focused on hydrogen- powered vehicles, including a world-first double-decker – and utilises a French battery pack that delivers 454kw and a 200-mile range. Wrightbus add that the Electroliner will recharge in two hours 45 minutes and can cope with all routes, whether urban or rural.
Capacity has not been compromised as the batteries are stored around the bus to ensure passenger comfort is not compromised, according to Wrightbus.
“We are the only manufacturer in the world to now have both hydrogen and EV double deck buses in production,” says Collins. “In essence, we believe in manufacturing the best zero emission

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