Cummins to make hybrids
AROUND the world, the enormous power of dieselelectric hybrids has not gone out of fashion since the late 1800s, and they are still used to drive trains, giant trucks and electric trams.
Diesel smoke is, however, rapidly going out of fashion and more cities are joining Athens, Madrid, Mexico City, Mumbai, Oslo, Paris and Stuttgart, which last year announced they will phase out the use of diesel engines on their streets by 2025.
This is why Cummins, an American company known for its diesel engines, last week announced it will start making natural gas engines as well as fully electric or hybrid powertrains. Cummins already has significant experience in the electrified powertrains but the company is now exploring partnerships with other groups to ensure the development of leading technology in energy storage, power electronics, traction motor systems and component control for commercial applications to start selling all-electric truck engines from 2019.
The electric drivetrains from Cummins will compete with the electric medium delivery truck from Mitsubishi Fuso, as well China’s BYD drivetrains, and the Nikola 1, an electric truck with a hydrogen fuel cell that is currently undergoing proof of concept in the U.S.
Meanwhile in Europe, bus operator Nobina has ordered 13 electric Volvo buses, which will operate in the Swedish city Malmö from the end of next year.
This is the biggest single order so far for the Volvo 7900 Electric and marks one of the biggest drives for all-electric bus traffic in Sweden.
Volvo’s electric buses recently started operating in the city of Differdange in Luxembourg. In addition to the all-electric Volvo 7900 Electric, the Volvo buses range of electrified vehicles encompasses hybrid buses and electric hybrid (plug-in hybrid) models.
The company has sold more than 3 500 electrified Volvo buses globally.
The 12-metre-long city bus uses 80% less energy than a corresponding diesel bus and its lithium-ion battery bank recharges under over-hard gantries within three to six minutes.
One of 3 500 full-electric Volvo buses recharging at a bus stop, a process that takes less than six minutes.