MAN Truck & Bus

A snow-covered road blurs in the dense fog.



Tough testing leads to top quality: before a MAN truck or bus is delivered to its customer, it has to go through a lot. Under the slogan “Tested to the limit”, vehicles are sent out into burning heat and bitter cold. And of course, the Lion’s City E was no exception.

284 Kilometres

If low temperatures are what you are looking for, you’ll be sure to find them in wintry northern Sweden. At the Arctic Circle, temperatures are around minus 40 degrees and colder – an extreme challenge for both people and technology. That was just the right environment for the new Lion’s City E electric bus from MAN to prove its toughness in snow and ice.

The fleet of test vehicles – including 26 trucks and eight buses, of which two were electric – was accompanied by a team of test drivers and technicians for winter testing in northern Sweden. Taking advantage of the snowy landscape, they evaluated the behaviour of the buses when driving on snow and ice, as well as their heating, cooling and air conditioning systems. Headlights and windscreen wipers also got to see if they were up to the challenge of Scandinavian quantities of snow. It was no mean feat for the MAN test drivers at the wheel: they had to safely manoeuvre the vehicles on icy roads and with terrible visibility.

Two photographs, each with a bus in different weather conditions and temperatures.
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Ice cold and scorching hot In northern Sweden, temperatures often fall to minus 40 degrees – an extreme challenge for the technology of the MAN Lion’s City E. Temperatures in southern Spain can hit 43 degrees. However, the MAN Lion’s City E didn’t even break a sweat in its heat trials.

This type of testing is essential and something that MAN has been conducting for more than 30 years, because weather conditions have a significant influence on control of a vehicle as well as on the operation of vehicle systems such as air conditioning, batteries or electronics. That’s why the test vehicles are packed with measuring technology: more than 300 sensors record temperatures, pressure or coolant flow rates. Other devices record the data traffic between the control units of the Lion’s City E. Engineers can optimise thousands of parameters, even during the drive, to perfect the vehicle’s performance. They always have one goal: to make the new vehicle ready for series production and to continually improve the technology even after production has started.

300 Sensors

An employee sits between countless colorful cables in a MAN bus at his laptop.
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Full of measurement technology When it goes on test drives, the MAN Lion's City E is equipped with additional sensor technology.

In addition to extreme cold, extreme heat is also a test of stamina for the technology. That’s why the extensive test and trial cycle for the Lion’s City E also included a trip to the heat of Spain’s Sierra Nevada last summer. Temperatures there soar to up to 43 degrees, but the electric bus didn’t skip a beat: the air conditioning system worked as flawlessly as the battery and drivetrain. The MAN electric bus also proved itself in customer tests in the Spanish city of Badajoz. Despite temperatures of over 35 degrees, the Lion’s City E completed a full 16-hour shift, covering an impressive 284 kilometres.

Heating, air conditioning and driving behaviour all easily met the high goals set – in icy cold and searing heat. The result was clear: the Lion’s City E is ready to go into series production.

Text   Christian Buck
Photos   GettyImages, MAN

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