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The company Opérateur de Transport de Wallonie (OTW), the public transport operator of the Francophone zone in Belgium has selected the CAF Group, through its subsidiary Solaris, to supply 161 Urbino 12 hybrid buses and their maintenance for a term of 8 years. The buses are scheduled to be delivered over the course of 2022, with the contract exceeding a value of €75m. 


These new low-emission Urbino 12 hybrid buses ordered by OTW will operate in the cities of Namur, Liège and Charleroi, and have been delivered to the regional transport operators TEC Charleroi and TEC Liège-Verviers, who Solaris has previously worked with, as well as to TEC Namur-Luxembourg. 


These new units will be equipped with a modern and ecological HybriDrive series hybrid electric drive system which will contribute towards significantly reducing fuel consumption and the emission of pollutants into the atmosphere. They will also include a Stop-and-Go function which switches the engine off completely when the bus stops at bus stops and the doors open, at which time previously stored energy recovered during braking is used. 


There will be two different designs for these Urbino 12 hybrid buses: one with two doors and another with three. The two-door version will be supplied to Namur, the capital of Wallonia (64 units) whilst the three-door version will be supplied to Charleroi (58 units) and Liege (39 units). Both models will be equipped with extremely efficient air-conditioning systems offering spacious interiors for improved passenger comfort. The vehicles will also be fitted with a video surveillance system and a passenger counting system. 


It should be pointed out that the first Solaris buses arrived in Belgium in 2013, with 240 hybrid buses similar to the ones in this contract having been supplied since in the cities of Liege, Henao and Charleroi, as well as the 32 electric buses supplied by the CAF Group which are currently operating on the streets of Brussels. 

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