News | 11 March, 2023

CaetanoBus and Deutsche Bahn signed the biggest framework agreement ever in Europe for electric hydrogen-powered buses!

CaetanoBus and Deutsche Bahn signed the biggest framework agreement ever in Europe for electric hydrogen-powered buses.

Following an international and demanding tender, the German public transport operator Deutsche Bahn (DB) has selected CaetanoBus and has already announced an order of 60 units of H2.City Gold which will be equipped with the new generation of Toyota fuel cell stack. The first buses will be in operation at the beginning of 2024. 

This frame agreement will scale up CaetanoBus’ sales of H2.City Gold model, the electric hydrogen-powered bus with more than 110 units sold to several European cities in Germany, France, Spain and Portugal. The vehicle is the result of a partnership between Toyota and CaetanoBus, the first company in Europe to use the Japanese Fuel Cell technology.  

The co-branded H2.City Gold is a standard low-floor lightweight bus with an aluminium body that from 2024 will be equipped with the new generation of the Toyota Fuel Cell stack with a nominal power of 70 kW. The Second-Generation of Toyota Fuel Cell System is more compact, lighter, even more efficient and provides more power density than the previous generation. 

Toyota began fuel cell development way back in 1992 and the company has continued to refine its hydrogen technology. The new second generation fuel cell modules are now assembled in Europe, at Toyota Motor Europe’s (TME) Research and Development facility, in Zaventem, Brussels. 

Taking advantage of this new technology, CaetanoBus’ R&D engineering team has also improved the integration of the new system into the bus by using now the heat released from the Fuel Cell Stack to warm up faster and provide more comfort to the passengers salon and driver cabin. With this upgrade of the H2.City Gold, CaetanoBus is also deploying other improvements that will leverage the performance of the vehicle such as reduce even more hydrogen consumption and driving comfort. A step ahead to meet current and future customers’ expectations. 

The H2.City Gold is also equipped with a small LTO battery pack with a capacity of 44 kWh and a powertrain with a peak power of 180 kW. The H2.City Gold will offer an autonomy of over 500km, being able to match the conventional diesel buses’ autonomy in a single refill. The passengers’ capacity goes up to 81 passengers (34 seats and 47 standing places) under the layout defined by DB. 

These orders are another important step toward the presence of Caetano buses in the German market, the most representative in the adoption of hydrogen mobility. So far, and not counting with these impressive number of buses to Deutsche Bahn, there are more than 55 Caetano H2.City Gold units in German cities, between delivered units and ongoing projects. 

Thomas Klaus, Head of Buses Procurement Regio Germany of Deutsche Bahn AG, says: "From this framework agreement, Deutsche Bahn expects to have 60 units of H2.City Gold from CaetanoBus in operation until 2026. Electric hydrogen-powered buses are filled up faster than the batteries of a purely electric bus are charged, and their long range is clearly the big advantage of this technology to replace diesel buses and to promote a smooth transition of our operations.”    

Nuno Lago de Carvalho, Chief Commercial Officer of CaetanoBus, highlights: "we are happy to be the best positioned company in a highly demanding international tender where CaetanoBus team was rewarded by the choice of Deutsche Bahn, one of the most important bus operators in Europe. But on top of that, we are proud of our active role towards a sustainable decarbonisation of the public transportation sector in Europe, by using hydrogen technology to achieve carbon neutrality and help realise a hydrogen economy.”