Megaflux and the government of Mexico City are collaborating to electrify the city’s Passenger Transportation Network (RTP). Megaflux is to build an electric bus following RTP’s specifications. This represents an important step toward the electrification of key transportation systems, a trend that is gaining steam during the administration of Claudia Sheinbaum.
Megaflux and RTP have signed an agreement to jointly develop buses. Megaflux will develop the 10.5m unit according to RTP’s specification during 2H22, to deliver it around 1Q23. “We worked with the local Ministry of Education, Science, Technology and Innovation. During the [Claudia Sheinbaum] administration we have carried out technological developments to meet the need for zero-emission transportation,” said Roberto Gottfried, CEO and Founder, Megaflux.
According to Gottfried, it is not necessary to design buses from scratch, which would require at least five years. Instead, the company aims to re-design existing units, which operate using diesel. The company said that after a mobile unit proved functional, it signed the collaboration agreement to electrify the first RTP unit. “We try to source from everything sustainably in the market and present another way to make the vehicle move, without having to reinvent it entirely,” Gottfried added.
Gottfried pointed out that Mexico City has looked for different alternatives to enrich its currently operating electric transportation system, which to date operates mostly via set routes using trolleybuses. Developing new wireless alternatives is therefore essential.
The company has experience in electrifying transportation fleets, having worked with notable companies like Grupo Modelo. In 2021, both companies started a joint venture to electrify Modelo’s fleet in Mexico’s capital. By March 2022, they presented what they consider to be the world’s first entirely electric lowboy trailer with an autonomy of over 80km, 20km of backup battery and a capacity to carry 12 tons. According to Gottfried, the units are operating under a pilot program in Mexico City.
To develop electric units, the company uses a lab located in Iztapalapa, constructed after the company won a World Bank award for its Sustainable Energy Technologies Development for Climate Change project, along with UNAM’s Engineering Institute and the National Institute of Electricity and Clean Energies.
During the Sheinbaum administration, Mexico City has invested in various electric mobility alternatives, such as the Cablebus, the acquisition of six new units for the city’s light rail system and the recently announced plan to fully electrify the Metrobus’ Line 3 by March 2023.