Propulsion Technologies

The Fraunhofer IVI has many years of work experience in the field of innovative propulsion systems for public transport. The focus of these projects is on fully electric and hybrid propulsion systems. The Fraunhofer IVI’s expertise is based on numerous measuring campaigns in public transport vehicles and a detailed knowledge of vehicle technology – especially regarding innovative propulsion systems and their implementation in test vehicles (AutoTram®, AutoTram® Extra Grand, EDDA-Bus as a battery bus with fast-charging capacity, plug-in-hybrid bus SaxHybridPLUS).

The experience gained in the field of public transport vehicle technologies was incorporated into the vehicle simulation model IVIsion, a development of the Fraunhofer IVI. The product, which is successfully employed in a large number of projects, describes entire vehicles with great precision, combining detailed component models for powertrain, energy storage systems, auxiliaries, cooling and heating, driver and passengers, as well as interaction vehicle – Umwelt – road into one highly complex simulation model. With the help of this model, it is possible to make a range of precise prognoses such as for the energy consumption of specific vehicle and propulsion configurations under given operational conditions.

AutoTram® and AutoTram® Extra Grand

High-tech In-Between a Bus and a Tram

The AutoTram® Extra Grand combines the advantages of a tram with those of a bus. It can carry over 250 passengers, can be driven fully electrically, is flexibly operable on any route while being half as expensive as a conventional tram. In addition, it contains a novel joint system and an electronic multi-axle steering system. With these features, the AutoTram® Extra Grand is especially well-suited for operation in areas with a rapidly increasing transport demand.

Battery Bus with Fast Charging Capacity

Fully Electric Public Transport

The electric bus with fast charging capacity combines state-of-the-art technologies in order to facilitate fully electric driving in regular service. The bus is recharged in a matter of seconds during regular stops using an especially developed contact system. Highly efficient battery technology and control systems round off the overall system.

Route Implementation for Electric Buses

Consulting Service for the Implementation of Fully Electric City Buses

Many public transport providers want to or have to integrate electric buses into their vehicle fleets in the near future. However, not all routes are equally suited for an integration. With the help of especially developed analysis tools, the Fraunhofer IVI is able to identify all suited routes within a given network and to formulate a detailed implementation plan.

Development and Testing of Core Technologies for Plug-In Hybrid Buses

What is currently impeding the overall introduction of electromobility in public transport is the lack of an area-covering network of charging stations as well as the still very limited range of fully-electric vehicles. The project SaxHybridPLUS is developing and testing core technologies for plug-in hybrid buses in order to level out the disadvantages of today’s electric vehicles by using a hybrid approach.

Project Website

HYdraulic HYbrid for Extended Electrical Range

HY²PE²R focuses on commercial vehicles


Development activities in the field of electromobility are increasingly focussing on commercial vehicles. Especially in this vehicle class, it is possible to generate fundamentally new vehicle functionalities through electromobile approaches. The storage technologies currently available, however, are not suited for the operation of fully electric vehicles. With the help of hybrid approaches, it is possible to initiate the transition to fully electric vehicles.

Innovative Propulsion Systems

Moving the Future

The Fraunhofer IVI executes research on all aspects of innovative propulsion systems for cars, public transport vehicles and commercial vehicles. The spectrum includes topics such as the optimization of auxiliaries, the generation and storage of energy for electric vehicles, and the design of complete powertrains. In additon, the institute develops high-performance software and operates a number of different test stands.


IVIsion Simulation Tool

Analyses for the Implementation of Electric Public Transport Vehicles

IVIsion is a system that analyzes public transport routes with regard to their suitability for an implementation of electric vehicles. The integrated modules for the processing of measuring data, the establishment of engine characteristics, and for vehicle simulation, IVIsion is able to identify well-suited routes and gives support for electrification planning.