VDL Bus & Coach has reported an order for 31 e-buses from Finland. There are 18 Citeas LLE Electric for Lahti and 13 Citeas LLE Electric for Kuopio, a city in inland Finland. According to the VDL, this request shows that “e-buses are also a viable option in medium-sized cities”.
Bus operators in both cities – Kuopion Liikenne Oy and Koiviston Auto Oy – belong to Koiviston Auto Group, the largest operator in Finland. With 31 buses now ordered, the total number of Citeas LLEs that VDL delivered to Koiviston Auto Group is more than 200. The Lahti-based family business has around 1,000 buses and city buses and employs more than 2,300 people.
Citea buses for Lahti and Kuopio are equipped with a 35 + 4 seat configuration and offer space for one or two baby carriages. The buses have a battery pack with a storage capacity of 282 kWh on board. Charging is via cables in Kuopio and the Pantograph at Lahti. The VDL wrote in a press release that icy winter temperatures, when temperatures of -30 degrees or even colder, “place high demands on vehicles”.
Meanwhile, Finland also has other electric bus manufacturers on its radar. BYD, for example, recently received a major order from the Scandinavian country: operator Nobina ordered a total of 106 e-buses from BYD, 64 of which were destined for the capital Helsinki and 42 for use in Turku – including a new model from the Chinese manufacturer.