Mercedes Monopolizes on Emission-Free Public Transport - Newest eCitaro G Bus

Mercedes-Benz eCitaro G 15 photos
Photo: Daimler AG
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It’s official. Mercedes-Benz has launched its newest line of inner-city buses, or as they call them, minibuses. But what’s the big fuss? It’s because they are completely emissions free due to the incorporation of new technologies.
If you ask me, I think it’s about time that our society has moved some of its attention to the common good of the people. This being said, Mercedes-Benz has officially released the newest public transport around. But why it this such a big deal? Because these buses are 100% emissions free, employing the use of solid-state batteries for energy production. The new line that is in question is the eCitaro G bus.

It has only been in recent years that this tech has undergone the necessary advancements to be applicable in larger machines such as cars and now buses. But what does this mean for Mercedes?

Even though Benz recently launched three new buses, it’s only the eCitaro G that allows for the use of new solid-state batteries. Even though the idea behind this type of battery has been around for years, and even used in wearable components such as pacemakers, they have been nearly inaccessible to the automotive industry because of their high production cost. And not only this.

eCitaro G
Photo: Daimler AG
This puts them at the forefront of using this technology in such a way, meaning they basically have a monopoly on the idea, at this time anyway. Think about it like this for a moment. You’re sitting in a bus stop for 10-15 minutes. Almost every current vehicle on the streets is producing pollution on some level or another. Then we have the city buses, which oddly enough, produce less CO2 emissions per 100 passengers than your average car. Just to start, the bus is an articulated one, meaning it can carry nearly double the passengers than your average bus, upwards of 146, depending on the bus configuration.

Seeing as how a bus can carry a much larger load than a car, it’s only natural that it is more fuel efficient. So why not make it zero emissions?

Just so we understand the level of importance of this technology, Mercedes already had a back log of sixty orders for the eCitaro G when it was announced in June. Recently, the carmaker made a switch to an NMC variant of lithium-ion. This step toward solid-state batteries allowed the existing eCitaro capacity to jump from 292kWh to a whopping 396kWh. But this is still a bit shy of current fossil fuel or hybrid bus range.

eCitaro G
Photo: Daimler AG
The eCitaro G however, makes the next step up and enters the same range category as existing public transport. Through the incorporation of seven battery packs, this tech amps the eCitaro G’s capacity to 441 kWh. But because this battery technology isn’t exactly what we want just yet, Daimler will continue to use the NMC and lithium-ion variants.

However, plans for better, faster, stronger solid-state tech is in the plans by 2022. In the meantime, Daimler will also be fitting the new eCitaro G with a current collector or pantograph. This is to be used as a variant that follows contact rails, giving it a charging output up to 300Kw.

Personally, I live in a city where Citaros are everywhere. But I would really like to wait for one knowing I won’t hear it, I won’t smell it, and the AC units' function. Come on government, work your magic.
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About the author: Cristian Curmei
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A bit of a nomad at heart (being born in Europe and raised in several places in the USA), Cristian is enamored with travel trailers, campers and bikes. He also tests and writes about urban means of transportation like scooters, mopeds and e-bikes (when he's not busy hosting our video stories and guides).
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