Van Hool

Bus builder Van Hool to cease building diesel and gas-powered vehicles

The bus builder Van Hool from Koningshooikt, near Lier in Antwerp Province has announced that is to no longer produce vehicles that are powered by fossil fuels. In future Van Hool will only make electrically powered busses, busses powered by hydrogen and trolley-busses that are powered by electricity supplied by overhead cables.

Van Hool’s spokesman Dirk Snauwaert told VRT News that “We need to respond to people’s concerns about the environment”. Van Hool has long been developing more eco-friendly busses, not least for its many foreign customers in countries the world over”.  

From now on Van Hool will only build so-called “zero emission busses”. “We want to be prepared for an environmentally-friendly future”, Mr Snauwaert told VRT News.

So far Van Hool has received 13 orders for its eco-friendly vehicles. This includes orders from the Flemish public transport company De Lijn as well as from public transport companies from elsewhere in Europe and in North America. 

A total of 162 vehicles have been ordered. They will be built at the company’s factories in Antwerp Province and in Macedonia. The success of the new busses provides a great boost for staff at the Koningshooikt factory, many of whom were laid off for long periods at height of the coronavirus crisis.

However, Van Hool is not out of the woods yet and with tourism still not back at pre-corona levels orders for coaches are still well down on what they were three years ago.

2,500 people work at Van Hool’s Koningshooikt plant. 

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