The STM and RTL to Road Test an Iveco Irisbus Hybrid Drive Articulated Bus

Société de transport Montréal (STM) and Réseau de transport de Longueuil (RTL) are teaming up to carry out a joint technological assessment project for public transportation. Over the next few months, the two transit companies will conduct a comparative assessment of the Citelis Hybride bus, a diesel-electric hybrid drive articulated bus from European manufacturer Iveco Irisbus, and the diesel drive articulated bus produced by Nova Bus. Serving as a control bus, the latter will travel the same routes as the Citelis bus so their performances can be compared. Using the Citelis Hybride bus for passenger service will also help determine any potential fuel savings and, by the same token, any reduction in greenhouse gas emissions.

"This agreement clearly shows the cooperation between the STM and RTL in assessing the technologies that best meet their respective needs. This showcase project will help us learn more about the technology behind hybrid drives that we do not currently use in our fleet of vehicles. It is the same technology as the one chosen by Québec transit companies as part of a joint call for tenders currently underway for the procurement of regular hybrid buses," declared STM board chairman, Michel Labrecque. "The STM will also take advantage of the project to assess potential energy savings thanks to the bus' technological characteristics. According to European usage reports, the hybrid technology used by manufacturer Iveco Irisbus currently allows for a reduction in fuel consumption of at least 25 percent, which can even reach 40 percent depending on operating conditions."

"Constantly being on the lookout for greener solutions to improve the environmental performance and reduce the footprint of our activities is a priority for the RTL and for all transit companies. Coordinated by AVT, the Société de gestion et d'acquisition de véhicules de transport, composed of the nine leading transit companies in Québec, this assessment project will be of great benefit to them all because the collected data and concludions will be shared among them. The opportunity to test this hybrid technology now will give us a considerable advantage when we take delivery of our first hybrid buses in the future, and also when the time comes to order new articulated ones. We are pleased to do so in partnership with the STM and Iveco Irisbus," added Caroline St-Hilaire, RTL board chair and mayor of Longueuil.

"We take special pride in having a hybrid, articulated Citelis bus roaming the streets of Montréal and Longueuil agglomeration on an experimental basis for the next few months. Our Citelis bus is as comfortable in the colder climates of northern Europe as in the warmer areas in the south. It also performs brilliantly in several transit networks in Central Europe. We are convinced our Canadian friends will appreciate our vehicle's many advantages, namely its economical operation and environmental performance, in addition to the comfort enjoyed by both driver and passengers. Its European esthetics, characterized by its smooth, streamlined appearance that blends perfectly into the urban landscape, its oversize windows that provide unparalleled views of the city, will no doubt seduce Quebecers. I wish the very best success to both the STM and RTL for testing a Citelis bus on North American ground, a first," added Franco Miniero, director general of Iveco Irisbus.

For the STM

From May 7 to Aug. 16, 2012, the STM will operate the Citelis Hybride bus to assess its overall and, more specifically, its environmental performance. The diesel-electric hybrid drive vehicle will travel the same routes as the articulated "control" bus. Both will carry instruments and be put into passenger service weekdays on the 435 – du Parc and 139 – Pie-IX lines. The two buses will also be assessed on other routes featuring inclines and where articulated buses are already in service.

For the RTL

From Sept. 17 to Nov. 16, 2012, the Citelis Hybride bus will mainly be operated on the 45 Express line running between the Panama and downtown terminuses, which will make it possible to assess the vehicle's performance under different, complementary conditions to those studied by the STM. The vehicle will be in use Monday to Friday, from 5:30 a.m. to 7:30 p. m. Customer feedback will also be welcome.

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