Automotive

Europe's first electric fire truck ready for rapid response

Europe's first electric fire t...
The all-electric tactical vehicle is joining the fleet at the FHKW-Mitte fire station in Linz, Austria
The all-electric tactical vehicle is joining the fleet at the FHKW-Mitte fire station in Linz, Austria
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Installing the electric powertrain of the new tactical fire truck
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Installing the electric powertrain of the new tactical fire truck
A Rosenbauer KLF-L emergency vehicle being converted to an electric powertrain
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A Rosenbauer KLF-L emergency vehicle being converted to an electric powertrain
The all-electric tactical vehicle is joining the fleet at the FHKW-Mitte fire station in Linz, Austria
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The all-electric tactical vehicle is joining the fleet at the FHKW-Mitte fire station in Linz, Austria
The all-electric tactical vehicle is joining the fleet at the FHKW-Mitte fire station in Linz, Austria
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The all-electric tactical vehicle is joining the fleet at the FHKW-Mitte fire station in Linz, Austria
The electric fire truck has a 120 kW motor and 86 kWh battery pack
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The electric fire truck has a 120 kW motor and 86 kWh battery pack
The electric fire truck's range is estimated to be 160 km per charge
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The electric fire truck's range is estimated to be 160 km per charge
Rosenbauer, Linz AG and Kreisel Electric plug in an all-electric fire truck
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Rosenbauer, Linz AG and Kreisel Electric plug in an all-electric fire truck

Rosenbauer, Linz AG and Kreisel Electric (the battery specialist behind the electrified Hummer launched with the help of Arnold Schwarzenegger last year) have revealed the first fully-equipped electric fire truck in Europe. Based on a Mercedes Sprinter, the electric drive tactical vehicle will join the fleet of a fire brigade stationed in the Austrian city of Linz.

The all-electric fire truck has been 2 years in development, and is seen as a good fit for rapid response situations, with charging undertaken on site at the FHKW-Mitte fire station between calls. The vehicle is based on Rosenbauer's KLF-L emergency vehicle, which is itself based on a Mercedes Sprinter, and is 7.45 meters (24.4 ft) long with a 4.325 m (14.1 ft) wheelbase. The conversion to an electric powertrain is reported to have taken around 2 months.

The electric fire truck's range is estimated to be 160 km per charge
The electric fire truck's range is estimated to be 160 km per charge

A 120 kW electric motor gets its juice from four batteries, weighing in at 620 kg (1,366 lb) for a total capacity of 86 kWh. It's range is estimated as 160 km (99.4 mi), with a quick charge to 90 percent possible in about 1 hour and 20 minutes. The new fire truck is reckoned to be significantly cheaper to run than combustion engine equivalents, while it's estimated that if the vehicle clocks 12,000 km (7,460 mi) per year, it will save 4.8 tonnes of CO2 annually.

Though the Kriesel vehicle is being promoted as Europe's first fully equipped modern electric fire truck, it's not the very first electric vehicle to be used by fire services in Europe (thanks to reader Lasse Reinikainen for the heads up). Self-propelled electric fire engines did briefly hit the streets in the early 1900s, before being ousted by gasoline vehicles.

You can have a good look around the electric rapid response vehicle in the video below.

Sources: Kreisel Electric, Linz AG

Kreisel Electric, Linz AG und Rosenbauer stellen erstes elektrisches Feuerwehr-Einsatzfahrzeug vor

3 comments
MartinVoelker
Kreisel Electric has been good for some astounding conversions. But the key insight here is that in an organisation's fleet there are a number of use cases where an EV fits the needs perfectly and without compromise. Just as not every police vehicle needs to be an Interceptor, the fire brigade or parks & recreation will be better served with some choice EVs.
ljaques
Wow, what an educational video, showing nothing about the functions, the capacities, or the types of fires the truck can service. It only showed pictures of the batteries and chargers. I guess the only important figure to cities and firemen is how many tons of CO2 it will not put out per year. I kinda thought they'd be interested in saving lives, putting out fires, transporting firemen and their equipment to the fires, etc. My bad.
jgb
There is a world of difference between a fire truck and a vehicle used by the brigade. It is unlikely that there will ever be a battery operated fire truck simply due to the power required to run the vehicle during fire fighting operations.