Kassel orders 22 trams from Škoda

trams for Kassel Kasseler Verkehrs-Gesellschaft (KVG) and Škoda Group signed a contract for the supply of 22 two-way trams for Kassel including an option to purchase another 18 trams.

EUR 88 million is the value of the ordered trams, the largest investment in vehicles in the history of KVG.

The production of the new 30-metre two-way trams for Kassel is scheduled to start at the end of 2024 and expected to be delivered in 2026. This should be followed by technical tests and trials on the streets of the city. After approval by the Technical Supervisory Authority (TAB) of Darmstadt Regional Council, the first new trams can be put into regular operation from 2027.

They will run within the urban network operated by KVG which, in addition to Kassel itself, also includes Vellmar, Baunatal, Lossetal and other neighbouring areas.

The new vehicles will have a length of 30 m and an Albert coupling which allows for attachment of an additional motor car or trailer. Each of the trams will have four doors on each side for passengers to board and alight and, as a matter of course, a low-floor design to facilitate boarding and alighting for people with reduced mobility.

The trams for Kassel will be among the first from the Škoda Group to be equipped with advanced anti-collision system which increases safety and protects passengers and pedestrians.

The Škoda Group’s new anti-collision system creates a virtual tunnel in front of the tram in which it detects all static and dynamic obstacles and, if it detects one, alerts the driver and activates the emergency brake. The entire surrounding area is monitored by a suite of sensors which includes LiDAR, an IMU unit and a camera. The LiDAR is responsible for 3D mapping of the surrounding area within a range of 100-150 m in both horizontal and vertical fields of view. The IMU unit feeds information about the vehicle’s tilt into the system and helps the sensor output from the anti-collision system to reflect the profile of the track. The camera provides high-resolution 2D images which capture more detail.

“Efficient and attractive local rail transport ensures a sustainable quality of life in cities. For this we need a strong vehicle fleet. Škoda produces well-designed and reliable trams and submitted the most cost-effective bid. This contract paves the way for the gradual modernisation of our public transport system, as this is a prerequisite for revamping mobility in Kassel and the surrounding area,“ Olaf Hornfeck, member of the board of directors of KVG, said.

Tramways are the backbone of Kassel public transport system and are carrying 48 million passengers a year representing 80 percent of the total number of passengers, with the remaining 20% covered by bus services.


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