Cluj-Napoca electric buses

Progetto concluso
Electric buses
Thanks to Swiss financial and technical support, the Romanian city of Cluj-Napoca launched a fleet of 11 electric buses in June 2018. © SECO

In order to promote clean urban transport and innovative, sustainable public transport, reduce energy consumption and improve air quality, old diesel buses of Cluj-Napoca were replaced by battery powered autonomous electric buses, which will complement existing public transportation systems, such as trolleybuses and trams.

Paese/Regione Tema Periodo Budget
Proteggere l’ambiente
Efficienza energetica ed energie rinnovabili
29.07.2015 - 29.10.2018
CHF  6’456’938

Note: the texts under all the headings, with the exception of 'Results achieved', describe the situation before the start of the project.


Under the Swiss-Romanian Cooperation Programme the European Energy Award is being introduced in four Romanian pilot cities. The European Energy Award is a quality management and certification system for municipalities committed to sustainable municipal energy, climate and transport policies. It is based on the label “Energy City”, which has originally been developed in Switzerland. Cluj-Napoca, a city of 305'000 inhabitants located in Transylvania, is one of four selected pilot cities. Based on its Sustainable Energy Action Plan (SEAP) it has identified the replacement of old diesel buses by battery powered autonomous electric buses as a priority infrastructure project, in order to promote innovative and sustainable solutions in public transport.


The goal of the project is to introduce a more sustainable public transportation concept (innovative battery powered electric buses) on a pilot basis which shall improve passenger comfort, economy and environmental aspects through energy and cost savings, as well as lower emissions (CO2, NOx, noise, etc.).

Gruppi target

The direct beneficiaries of the project are the Municipality of Cluj-Napoca and its public transportation company (CTP) who will save costs and thereby be able to release funds for additional improvements and energy saving measures. Indirect beneficiaries are the 305'000 inhabitants of Cluj-Napoca and its visitors who will benefit directly from the improved air quality and indirectly from the improved public finances of the city.


The project consists in the replacement of 10 (out of a fleet of 186) old diesel buses by battery powered electric buses and the set-up of the related charging infrastructure. The new electric buses will be used principally on the 17.2 km long line 30 (Aurel Vlaicu street - Grigorescu district) and accessorily on lines 27, 28 and 32, which are shorter lines linked to the Grigorescu district. 2 charging areas each with one fast-charging station and 5 slow charging stations will be set-up at each end of line 30. An additional slow-charging station will be installed at the service depot to assure the possibility of charging the buses after maintenance activities. For the new electric buses an innovative concept will be sought, whereby a pantograph will be used for fast charging buses with a capacity of 70 people, which allows to avoid too heavy batteries and to use existing trolley-bus infrastructure. A similar concept is being tested and implemented in Vienna, although with smaller (40 passenger) buses. These buses will have autonomy of 50-70 km and will be equipped with amenities to increase passenger comfort, including air-conditioning and access platforms for persons with physical disabilities.


Risultati raggiunti:  

  • Eleven diesel buses have been replaced by electric buses. The electric buses can recharge their batteries at newly installed charging stations at bus terminals and the city's main bus depot.
  • The network of charging stations and training provided for bus drivers ensures that the city's electric buses run smoothly.
  • It is estimated that thanks to Switzerland's support, Cluj-Napoca is able to save CHF 17,500 in energy costs per year and reduce its CO2 emissions by 800 tonnes per year.

Direzione/Ufficio responsabile SECO
Credito Contributo svizzero all'allargamento dell'UE
Partner del progetto Partner contrattuale
  • Romanian Ministry of Public Finance and Romanian Ministry of Regional Development and Public Administration

Partner attuatore
Municipality of Cluj-Napoca

Budget Fase in corso Budget Svizzera CHF    6’456’938 Budget svizzero attualmente già speso CHF    6’379’603
Fasi del progetto

Fase 10 29.07.2015 - 29.10.2018   (Completed)