Van Hool A-range of ZE buses to be offered in UK

Van Hool A12 battery electric bus

Van Hool will make its newly unveiled A range of zero-emission single-deck buses available in the UK market, a spokesperson has confirmed.

The modular platform has been launched in battery-electric format, and the manufacturer will follow that with hydrogen fuel cell-electric power. A trolleybus variant completes the line-up, which will be available at nominal lengths of 12, 13, 18 and 24m.

A 12.2m A12 in left-hand drive three-door format with battery-electric power was displayed at European Mobility Expo in Paris early in June. In that form, the model has NMC batteries from Akasol offering a capacity of 490kW/h, and ZF axles, including hub motors as part of the AVE 130 drive unit.

Van Hool says the unladen weight of the bus in question is in the region of 13,000kg. It can seat a maximum of 41 passengers. The OEM adds that 13 orders from customers in Belgium, Denmark, France and Germany are already in hand for 162 members of the A range. Those include battery- and hydrogen fuel cell-electric models.

Chief Executive Filip Van Hool notes that with launch of the A range, the Belgian company is ready “more than ever” to play a part in the European bus market. Van Hool’s intention “was to develop a platform that is comfortable, safe, timeless and sustainable” and which suits both urban and regional requirements, he adds.

“Our aim was to present an integrated new range to meet the high expectations of transport companies, drivers and passengers. The new interior and exterior design and the choice of three different powertrains were linked, on the one hand, to the international experience that we have built up over the past few decades and, on the other, to the challenges that public transport companies will face over coming years.”

Van Hool says that a modular fastening system on the roof of the A range will allow upgrades of items such as batteries, air-conditioning units and control systems. The manufacturer adds that heat pump technology in the climate control system and recovery of waste heat from the traction equipment will contribute to energy efficiency.