Hybrid buses on the TCL network launch of a one year experiment in Lyon

  • Updated19 December 2013
  • News

The SYTRAL is the organizing authority for urban transport
in the Lyon conurbation, the largest network in France
(outside of Paris). The TCL network is particularly characterized
by its modernity, the diversity of the modes operated – metro, tramway, funicular, bus, trolley-bus and electric
shuttles – and by the proportion of the modes operated by
electricity (72% of network movements). 25% of urban
journeys are therefore provided by generating only 3%
of atmospheric pollution.

The SYTRAL, which has more than 1000 buses and trolley
buses, 874 internal combustion (ic) buses and 131 trolley
buses, has always encouraged technological innovation
within the network and in particular as regards rolling
Interested in the new range of hybrid vehicles (ic and
electrical) and believing the hybrid technology is too
recent to offer return upon maturity, its 15-year
maintainability and its performance, the SYTRAL is
conducting a one year special experiment with three
models of hybrid buses: Iveco Bus, MAN Cars & Bus and
Volvo Bus.

Each manufacturer has developed its own technology
seeking different performances according to the operating
conditions. Given that the acquisition cost of hybrid
vehicles is higher than that of internal combustion vehicles,
the economic model is very dependent on gains in terms
of consumption and maintenance costs.

The aim of the experiment is to evaluate hybrid technology
proposed by the manufacturers under real operating
conditions, specifically:

  • Fuel consumption gains provided by the hybrid
    technology compared to the diesel technology
    currently used on the TCL network ;
  • The monitoring of the operating condition of the
    battery and its wear ;
  • The vehicle maintenance program monitoring ;
  • The monitoring of pollutants where measures
    are achievable ;
  • The comfort of passengers, drivers and residents.

Two hybrid vehicles of each model have been purchased
by the SYTRAL in order to guarantee the continuity of the
experiment in the event of any accident or breakdown. 6
hybrid vehicles and 2 diesel vehicles from the TCL fleet
constituting the reference for these tests, will operate at
the same time on each of the lines. All vehicles will change
line every three weeks in order to be tested under all
climatic conditions (summer-autumn-winter-spring) which
has a great influence on the results.

The SYTRAL has chosen to be assisted by IFPEN, a public
actor in research and training. It is neutral and objective in
the conducting of the experiment. Its role is to advise
the SYTRAL on its choice and to carry out the relevant
measurements. The results will be known at the end of
the experiment, in September 2014.

Contact: Olivia Dufour, press officer