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Tram-like electric bus being tested on Tallinn routes ahead of tender

Looks like a tram, is in fact a bus. The Irizar ieTram bus being trialed on the streets of the capital, February 10-20 inclusive.
Looks like a tram, is in fact a bus. The Irizar ieTram bus being trialed on the streets of the capital, February 10-20 inclusive. Source: TLT

An electric bus which rather more resembles a tram in its appearance is being trialed on the streets of Tallinn for the next 11 days, starting from Thursday. The vehicle is in the running for a full procurement of electric buses, to be announced next month.

The electric bus, the Spanish-made Irizar ieTram, will operate a total of 11 routes between today, Thursday, February 10, and Saturday, February 20 inclusive, and has been dubbed internationally a "tram that travels on bus wheels", deputy mayor Andrei Novikov (Center) says (see cover image).

The trial comes after the city's transport company, Tallinna Linnatranspordi AS (TLT), announced last week it had allocated €6 million for the procurement of 15 electric buses to serve the capital, while the Environmental Investment Center (KIK) is supporting the purchase of buses and the creation of charging infrastructure to the tune of €3.2 million.

Tallinn plans to make its public transport emission-free by 2035, which will also mean that compressed natural gas-fueled buses, which should total around 350 by year-end and have been bought to replace older diesel buses, will themselves need replacing by that time.

TLT spokesperson Olga Polienko told ERR the tender winner will be announced on March 17, while the electric buses, either the Irizar or any other four manufacturers who are in the running, will hit the streets in spring or summer 2023.

As reported by ERR News, TLT also intends to roll-out hydrogen-fueled buses on its routes in the next few years.

The Irizar electric bus will operate on a different Tallinn bus route each day, as follows:

February 10: Route 22.

February 11: Route 4.

February 12: Route 42.

February 13: Route 34A.

February 14: Route 43.

February 15: Route 46.

February 16: Route 5.

February 17: Route 47.

February 18: Route 27.

February 19: Route 10.

February 20: Route 16.

Ticket prices or the availability of free transport for Tallinn residents remain the same as they do on all other city buses.

The Irizar ieTram bus has five batteries and has a range of up to 200 kilometers on a single charge, in the Estonian climate, TLT says.

It can accommodate up to 105 passengers and its three-door entry is also designed for passengers with special needs.

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Editor: Andrew Whyte

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