Russian manufacturing group RariTEK presented its LOTOS 105 LNG city bus for testing by the City of Chelyabinsk, located in west-central Russia close to the Ural Mountains. On hand to receive the bus were Minister of Economic Development of the Chelyabinsk Region, Sergey Smolnikov, and the Acting Head of the City of Chelyabinsk, Vladimir Yelistratov.
The Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) powered Lotos 105 bus has cabin capacity for 76 passengers. Its power plant is a fuel-efficient Yuchai engine of 260 hp which enables a transportation range of up to 600 kilometers without refueling. In the basic configuration, all buses are equipped with ABS (anti-lock) and ASR (anti-slip) systems.
“This is a unique bus. To date there are no other certified LNG buses in Russia, and Chelyabinsk, we hope, will be the first in the country in terms of introducing such environmentally friendly rolling stock,” noted Sergey Smolnikov. “These types of models will be the basis for the changes, which, together with the city administration, we are planning to make to the SCO and BRICS summits in the transport system of Chelyabinsk. Another of our strategic partners in the implementation of this project is NovaTEK, which will provide the city with fueling infrastructure.” PAO NovaTEK is one of the largest independent natural gas producers in Russia.
As the minister noted, during this year mobile refueling complexes will start to work, but there is hope that thanks to the project, which NovaTEK has already started, in the first half of 2020, stationary gas stations will be built.
“In total, according to preliminary estimates, 863 buses of different classes will be required for the transport model of Chelyabinsk,” Smolnikov said. This includes about 300 of a class similar to the Lotos 105.
Last week, a meeting of invited bus manufacturers was held to notify them about future requirements. To date, rariTEK has been the only OEM to provide a test bus fr field trials. The bus requirement is expected to go to tender mid 2019.
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