Scania showed a new battery electric self-driving urban concept vehicle in Stockholm this week: the NXT. Being at a public transport fair this vehicle is designed as a bus, but the idea at Scania is to have one vehicle suitable for many purposes: from ferrying commuters to and from work in mornings and evenings, delivering goods during the day and collecting refuse at night.
According to Scania cities are driven by the need for lower emissions and less congestion. Commercial transport in many ways constitutes the pulse of a city. As an answer to this need Scania developed this NXT concept vehicle. The vehicle is build using a modular system, the front and rear drive modules can be fitted to a bus body, a distribution truck body or a refuse collector.
“NXT is a vision of the future for transport in cities to visibly and technically demonstrate ideas of what is within reach,” says Scania’s President and CEO Henrik Henriksson. “NXT is designed for 2030 and beyond while incorporating several cutting-edge features that are already available. We at Scania can’t redraw the entire transport system for cities. What we can do is inspire change and that is the idea behind NXT – to think about transport and vehicles in a different and sustainable way.”
Public transport has always meant sharing and needs a higher degree of automation. The eight-metre-long bus module is built as one composite unit, substantially reducing weight. The cylindrical cell batteries are placed under the floor, thereby utilising otherwise dead space as well as contributing to better weight distribution. With the low vehicle weight of less than eight tonnes, the range with present-day batteries is estimated at 245 kilometres.
“We are now taking a giant leap into the future. This vehicle will provide invaluable tangible data in our continued development of electrified autonomous vehicles,” says Robert Sjödin, NXT Project Manager.