DAimler Multiobus

Two electric eCitaro G delivered to Belgian Multiobus

14 March 2024

The Belgian operator Multiobus from the city of Tienen recently put its first two Mercedes-Benz eCitaro G into use. These two new electric articulated buses are part of an order by Multiobus for in total ten eCitaro's and are also the first Mercedes-Benz buses of this type to be delivered in Belgium.

Multiobus is a group of four transport companies active in regional transport in Flemish Brabant. The companies operate on behalf of Flemish transport authority De Lijn. It has concluded a ten year leasing contract for both vehicles, which are also the first two leasing contracts for an eCitaro G worldwide. Multiobus was hit by a serious, devastating fire last year but shows that it is once again committed to an electrified future. “We have been focusing on electrification since 2018 and had a well-defined plan for this. The serious fire in October last year obviously meant a major blow. Then 22 buses went up in flames after a fire broke out in a closed depot. Unfortunately, we also lost 13 electric buses. We were well on our way in achieving

the target of 50 percent electric buses by July 1, 2025,” says Olivier Van Mullem, managing director of Multiobus, who leads the group together with his colleague Jo Van Pee. "Just before the fire, during the Busworld show in Brussels, we had already ordered a number of new buses and, in combination with the second-hand Citaro's that we found in Germany, this helped us make a big step forward", emphasizes Olivier Van Mullem. "We have learned things about fire prevention in storage areas. From now on we will opt for an open warehouse, because the heat build-up in closed warehouses becomes too great in the event of a fire, which usually causes much greater damage. Where possible we will compartmentalize.

Daimler Multiobus 2

Another lesson we were able to learn is that a good data collection of information regarding buildings, vehicles and infrastructure is useful for reconstructing facts and events," says Olivier Van Mullem. "But we are currently still held back by our limited charging infrastructure, because it was also largely destroyed in the fire.” Multiobus has five depots and operates around a hundred scheduled buses. In addition, five buses operate in student transport, while five others are active in staff transport. The fleet is rounded out with seven coaches. Daimler Buses today accounts for about 50% of the fleet. In addition to the two new articulated eCitaro G, Multiobus will put eight more regular eCitaross into service in the coming weeks and months.