ZF is a automobile components and propulsion system manufacturer based in Germany. The company has been known for its gearboxes. With changing times and a shift towards electric drive, ZF started developing electric propulsion for buses. The first system was the very successful Ax Trax AVE portal axle. Now ZF has developed the second system, the CeTrax electric central drive.

The unique of this system is its plug and drive capability which allows companies to both design vehicles around this system as well as retrofit the system on existing vehicles with conventional drive line layout. Another important advantage of the CeTrax system is that the propulsion motor in this system can be driven by battery, trolley system or supercaps. If that is not enough, the system can be powered by hydrogen fuel cell systems also.

Image Courtesy ZF

Impressed by the performance and flexibility of the CeTrax system, the Polish bus company Solaris has agreed to install the system on their Urbino 15 buses. Solaris is a leading alternate propulsion bus manufacturer in Europe and has been supplying battery electric and fuel cell powered buses to municipalities across Europe.

Commenting on the product, Andreas Grossl, responsible for Axle and Transmission Systems for Buses and Coaches at ZF said, “The start of series production of the electric central drive for buses illustrates the pioneering position ZF is taking in electrification. CeTrax is another building block on the way to emission-free public transport, which ZF supports to the best of its ability.” He further added, “Winning over bus manufacturers with a market entry electric drive shows that we are on the right track with our strategy.”