Voltabox AG has secured a long-term framework contract with e-troFit GmbH based on a cooperation that was started last year. As such, Voltabox is now the preferred supplier of high-performance battery systems for e-troFit’s conversion solutions for diesel buses.
“The e-troFit approach is both logical and intriguing. Their assembly kit for conversion to an e-powertrain is perfectly adapted, both technically and commercially, and is comprehensively thought out, intensively tested and promises a long-term solution. I am thrilled that Voltabox, with its battery technology and extensive expertise in bus applications, is making an important contribution to sustainability through the modernisation of diesel buses in the field. This enables the reduction of emissions in city centers on a broader front,” explained Jürgen Pampel, CEO of Voltabox AG.
In the past fiscal year, e-troFit nominated Voltabox AG as the supplier of the battery unit for conversion kits for buses and trucks. At the same time, a team of Voltabox developers designed the battery system, which is precisely tailored to the needs of the conversion solution, in harmony with the drive components and vehicle control electronics. The delivery of the first systems took place on schedule in the fourth quarter of 2019. Now that the framework contract has been concluded, the two companies have formally established a long-term cooperation for a continuous supply of lithium-ion battery systems.
Voltabox has 8 years of experience in battery development for the public transport market segment. Since 2013, the Group has equipped several hundred trolleybuses worldwide with lithium-ion battery systems. Voltabox can now tap into a promising new subsegment of this market through the e-troFit cooperation. The retrofit solution is being expanded to other widely used bus and truck models as planned, and is also being rapidly marketed in markets beyond Germany.
Conversion Kit 1, to be distributed in the first step, contains a high-performance and modular Voltabox battery system consisting of modules with prismatic cells based on nickel-manganese-cobalt (NMC) cell chemistry. Distances of up to 260 km can be achieved with one battery charge on this basis, and the system can be gradually scaled for longer ranges. The weight-optimized battery system as a whole is designed so that it can be mounted both at the rear of converted buses as well as on the roof structure.
The product is entering the market at a time when municipalities must act to reduce CO2 emissions in their city centers due to increasing regulatory requirements. “Compared to a new purchase, conversion is an extremely economical and sensible alternative based on lower acquisition costs and faster delivery times due to price benefits over time compared to a diesel bus. Instead of continuing to be driven elsewhere as used vehicles, buses originally equipped with conventional combustion engines are given a second life by e-troFit and will be environmentally friendly and locally emission-free in the future, which makes them future-proof for operators,” explains Andreas Hager, CEO of e-troFit GmbH. In addition to retrofitting, e-troFit also plans to address manufacturers in the future in order to equip new buses, trucks and other commercial and special vehicles.
e-troFit is a subsidiary of the technology company in-tech GmbH. At the end of 2018, the conversion solution was awarded the German Mobility Prize, which is presented by the “Germany – Land of Ideas” initiative and the German Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure.