• 26-JAN-2018

IVECO BUS signed a record contract for 450 buses for Abidjan, Ivory Coast, setting the 1st High Quality Mass Transit Bus System powered on Natural Gaz in Africa

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IVECO BUS has just signed an order for 400 Crossway Low Entry and 50 Crealis 18-metre CNG buses for the Abidjan Transport Company SOTRA. The vehicles will be delivered from mid-2018 to the City of Abidjan. A historic order for the brand, that confirms its leadership in high quality mass buses and natural gas vehicles.

Founded in 1960, SOTRA was the first-ever public transport company in West Africa. It now confirms its pioneering role by ordering, from IVECO BUS, 50 18-metre Crealis buses powered by compressed natural gas (CNG). This order demonstrates the political commitment of the Ivorian President and government to go on investing in public transport and developing sustainable mobility .

As a pioneer and leader in Bus Rapid Transit solutions for over 10 years, IVECO BUS has already delivered close to 500 Crealis. On top, the brand also has a 20-year history as undisputed leader in natural gas vehicles, with some 6,000 units currently operating in Europe. It is now broadening its expertise by delivering the first-ever high-value CNG buses on the African continent. This deliberate choice by the Ivorian government in favour of natural gas confirms that it is a pertinent solution for the country and a real opportunity with readable gas availabilities. Natural gas vehicles are an effective answer to environmental concerns, and represent a real mature and efficient passengers transport solution.

The CNG Crealis offers major benefits in terms of pollution and noise reduction : fine particle emissions are reduced to nearly zero and nitrogen oxide emissions by more than one third, while noise level is reduced by half for an exceptional operating silence.

This agreement demonstrate our strong political commitment to expand the public transport network with low environmental impact vehicles, protecting the health of our citizens. We therefore naturally turned to IVECO BUS, the European leader renowned for its expertise in this field. We are very proud to receive these vehicles for the first time on the African continent ” says Amadou Kone, Ivory Coast Minister.

Designed for heavy traffic routes, the 50 Crealis 18-metre will be operated in the entire Abidjan metropolitan area, providing improved service and comfort to passengers in a modern and welcoming interior. Passengers will enjoy high luminosity thanks to full-height windows, and a customized design with metallic materials inside (seats and posts) and outside (reflective strips on the sides of the bodywork).

SOTRA joins the prestigious list of Crealis customers, such as Bologna in Italy, but also Nancy and Le Mans in France as well as Baku in Azerbaijan in CNG version.

Additionally, SOTRA is doubling its fleet with an order of 400 Crossway 12-metre Low Entry buses. Highly valued by urban and interurban transport operators – thanks to its versatility, reliability and excellent operating profitability – the Crossway Low Entry has also been recognised by the international press which has recently named it "2017 International Bus & Coach of the Year".

Sylvain Blaise, IVECO Vice President in charge of IVECO BUS comments “We are very pleased of SOTRA’s choice, confirming a strong political vision of modernizing and massifying the Abidjan public transport using sustainable solution. It was natural for IVECO BUS to position itself as a key enabler of such a vision with our products, services and financing solutions. We believe this will set the benchmark for many other countries in Western Africa. This is for us a real recognition of our leadership in BRT, gas and urban mobility solutions.”

January 26th, 2018