TESTS IN SAO PAULO WILL LAST 6 MONTHS
Colombiabus newsroom – Higer Latinamerica / William Marroquín
With about 23 million inhabitants, São Paulo is the tenth most populous city on the planet and the second in Latin America, where more than 6.5 million vehicles circulate daily, experiencing phenomenal traffic jams, which can reach several kilometers, causing commuting is a nightmare. They also generate great pressure to seek sustainable mobility solutions that contribute to a better quality of travel within cities.
The city is also preparing for the electrification of its public transport, and they hope to take their first steps, so there is a commitment so that the great Brazilian metropolis will have at least 2,600 electric buses by 2024. This announcement from the Mayor of São Paulo, Ricardo Nunes, has accompanied the presentation for Latin America of the new Chinese Higer Azure A12 bus that will begin tests in the city.
Although the bus has been built in China, it is prepared to receive contributions from suppliers in Brazil, it is 12.2 meters long and capable of moving 70 passengers with two access doors. With a common gross vehicle weight of 13,700Kg, it is slightly lighter than equivalent buses and can reach a range of up to 270Km, while the batteries can be recharged in a maximum of 3 hours.
A curious detail is that at least to start its commercial life, it is not expected to arrive as a chassis to be bodied locally, in fact it is expected that it may arrive in the next import quotas that are expected to be approved in Brazil. Despite its imported origin, Higer has entered into alliances with important brands located in the country, which are partners and suppliers of components for their manufacture: Valeo for air conditioning, ZF provides the axles, Dana the transmission, the steering is of Bosch origin, TRW developed the suspension, Wabco took care of the brakes, Michelin with its wheels and Mobitec will be responsible for the electronic routers.
The bus will arrive in a PKD configuration in Brazil and the mechanical components of the aforementioned brands will be installed in the country, but Higer will be in charge of both the bodywork, batteries, powertrain and telematics systems.
“Higer’s great technology is managing power inverters and controllers, as well as batteries. We have a five-in-one package, with an improved center of gravity unlike other brands, with that we gain in weight and maintenance cost. Monoblock technology, which we are proposing in Brazil, is the most appropriate. That’s because the electric bus is very sensitive to weight and volume. Higer has a chassis, but the Brazilian bodies are very heavy, which leaves between a ton and a half more »explains Marcello Barella, Sales Director for Brazil, Colombia, Venezuela and Uruguay at Higer Bus.
To make it easier for operators to acquire the bus, Higer has signed alliances with EnelX and Engie to develop financial and operational leasing models with terms never seen before: contracts that can be extended up to 15 years, where the bus will return to the manufacturer once it is finished its useful life. The agreements also include the cost of replacement of the batteries in the eighth year, spare parts, recharging infrastructure and of course, the payment of energy. They are terms in accordance with the reality of the operation, which will allow that during the useful life of the vehicle, its costs are cheaper than other options on the market.