September 21, 2020. With the help of CRMT technical teams, the French group Trouillet transformed the Daily Natural Power into a city bus with capacity for 30 people.
Thanks to its small dimensions, designed to meet the constraints of the city and, in particular, the hyper center, the D-City is now available in a version fueled by compressed natural gas (CNG). Produced in cooperation with the CRMT, the storage system consists of 2 composite tanks of 150 liters each installed on the roof and connected to the regulator. “CRMT brought its experience and helped build the specifications for the integration of CNG components. There was a maximum mass to be respected. This is the reason why the choice fell on tanks made of composite materials and not steel. The basis of the tanks was made of aluminum”, explains Jean-Etienne Péron, CRMT sales engineer.
In addition to these two additional tanks, the gas D-City retains the two 28-liter steel tanks from the original model. These are integrated into the rear overhang. The double mounting allows the minibus to reach 350 to 400 km of autonomy with a full tank.
Designed on the Iveco Daily 65C Natural Power chassis, the only version offered is taller than the original, reaching 3.1 meters compared to the previous 2.7 meters, but maintains the same dimensions elsewhere: 7.1×2.1 meter. The gas minibus has capacity for 13 people seated and 17 standing, except when a person with reduced mobility is present, reducing the total capacity to 26 passengers.
Trouillet Cars et Bus expected delivery of the first vehicles in the first quarter of 2021, but the Iveco plant in Suzzara, Italy, which makes the Daily chassis, has not yet resumed its usual pace. Also, transforming this model to a gas engine requires more work, which could take waiting times to an additional 6 to 9 months. Using the pre-existing chassis from the Iveco Daily will have the advantage of facilitating body repairs, although many elements have been customized for the D-City. For example, the windows and interior lining of the passenger compartment look nothing like the original van. Also, numerous functions make it a modern model suitable for urban driving, such as the touch screen that controls the accessibility and passenger comfort functions (heating, air conditioning, roof hatch).