Moving people forward together

Moving people forward together
The future of transport needs pioneers to develop new solutions together.
Dr. Sascha Klett, chief technical officer of Ziehl-Abegg Automotive, is motivated by excitement, innovation and a desire to keep one step ahead of the future.
Moving people forward together

Is there a better way to move people?

An electric wheel hub drive developed by Ziehl-Abegg promises to deliver silent, zero-emission bus journeys. Thanks to a partnership with BPW, the drive is to be delivered ready to install as a complete axle drive unit.


“There’s no doubting our aspiration to lead the field as regards technology,” says Dr. Sascha Klett, chief technical officer of Ziehl-Abegg Automotive. “We intend to set standards,” he insists. The company, which is the global market leader in several business segments, has developed an electric wheel hub drive for buses. “Our search for a partner with a wealth of experience in the commercial vehicle sector led us to BPW,” explains Klett. “In our view, BPW is an exemplar of expertise and sustainability in the auto industry. In view of its know-how, we were confident of its ability to implement such a pr oject reliably and promptly. It also manufactures its products in Germany, and we are both family enterprises.”

Moving people forward together
Moritz Kramer, Business Development Truck & Bus at BPW

BPW ranks among the leading suppliers of intelligent running gear systems worldwide and, given its more than 120 years of experience in the commercial vehicle sector, is a formidable partner for truck and bus manufacturers that need specific integrated solutions for their vehicles. It produces components for prominent players in the industry, including Volvo and Scania.

“We offer our customers a one-stop shop, from unfinished castings to component machining and fully assembled axles,”

explains Moritz Kramer, who is responsible for business development in BPW’s truck & bus unit. When it passed the IATF 16949 certification audit in January 2018, BPW further consolidated its position as a quality leader in the commercial vehicle industry. It ranks among the very few suppliers in this sector to have been awarded the certificate of compliance. Numerous manufacturers in the industry are seeking to reduce the number of their suppliers. “They are looking for partners who can interpret their needs and take charge of whole sections of their value chain. We offer ideal capabilities in this respect and look forward to further organic growth alongside our existing customers,” says Kramer.

Single-decker, airport, open-top and double-decker buses can all be fitted with the zero-emission drive.
Moving people forward together


The project team faced a series of major technical challenges when developing the electric axle drive for buses. They worked together to determine how the axle needed to be designed and manufactured in order to withstand the rigours of everyday service. Klett is full of praise for BPW’s communication skills as well; interaction was always collaborative, frank, open and transparent.

“Obstacles that could hamper the project were addressed very early and openly, which enabled us to make good use of our room for manoeuvre throughout the entire process.”

Dr. Sascha Klett, Chief Technical Officer of Ziehl-Abegg Automotive

He sees great potential for electric drive solutions especially in large cities. “For buses in particular,” says Klett, “the growth in demand will be very strong.” The reasons are self-evident: electric buses do not emit any noxious gases, are much quieter than their conventional cousins, and pull away very smoothly. In consequence, they offer a very comfortable ride. As Klett insists, “Electric transport is a viable proposition not only in theory, but also in practice. We now need solutions capable of asserting themselves in the marketplace.”

Moving people forward together
In order to construct a wheel hub drive for buses, Ziehl-Abegg was looking for a specialist in running gear systems – and that’s when it came across BPW.
Moving people forward together
Ziehl-Abegg and BPW are pointing the way towards zero-emission transport.