Manufacturer Easymile was awarded the contract for the delivery of three electrically operated mini buses in the project EVA-Shuttle / Project consortium equips vehicles for autonomous operation in Karlsruhe / Test drives on the Test Area Autonomous Driving Baden-Württemberg starting at the beginning of 2020.
The Karlsruhe project EVA-Shuttle reaches an important stage in the preparation for the tests of autonomous mini shuttles in public transport in the district of Karlsruhe.
“We are happy to have reached an important landmark in the project EVA-Shuttle. The call for tenders for the purchase of basic vehicles is closed. The vehicles will be purchased in the next months,” says project leader Professor Dr.-Ing. J. Marius Zöllner.
The contract was awarded to the company Easymile. A total of three ‘Easymile EZ10 Gen2′ vehicles will be purchased for the project. As planned, two buses will be financed by project funds and one more will be purchased by the Albtal-Verkehrs-Gesellschaft (AVG).
The delivery of the first shuttle is already expected in July, so that the consortium can start to further equip the mini buses in a couple of weeks. Several manufacturers from Germany and European countries had applied for the EU-wide tender and had submitted offers. The manufacturer will first equip the electrically operated mini buses with additional interfaces, so that they can be worked with in the project. “The vehicles need additional sensors and automated driving functions, which allow a comprehensive understanding of the vehicle environment and an adapted behaviour, to survive in mixed traffic,” says Executive Director Zöllner.
The vehicles will be equipped with these components in July by the consortium partners. “We will start testing the new vehicles in autumn this year. On the Test Area Autonomous Driving Baden-Württemberg, we will start driving in 2020,” he adds.
The aim of the project “Elektrische, vernetzte und autonom fahrende Elektro-Mini-Busse im ÖPNV” (“electrical, connected and autonomously driving electric mini buses in public traffic”, EVA-Shuttle for short) is to develop a mobility solution for the first and last mile from the bus stop to the passengers’ front door. The project consortium thus tests a new offer in public transport, giving the passengers more possibilities and comfort and expanding the offer of public transport.
Besides the FZI Research Center for Information Technology as the consortium leader, Robert Bosch GmbH, Verkehrsbetriebe Karlsruhe GmbH, TÜV SÜD Auto Services GmbH and the Deutsche Bahn subsidiary ioki GmbH are also working on the development of the transport concept. Associated partners of the project are INIT GmbH, the City of Karlsruhe and the Karlsruhe Transportation Authority / Albtal-Verkehrs-Gesellschaft. The project is funded by the Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure (BMVI) in the framework of the research programme “Automated and Connected Driving” with EUR 2.32 Million and has a runtime of 27 months.