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Brazil Is Testing in Sí£o Paulo Its Homegrown Ethanol Bus

São Paulo, Brazil, ethanol bus The ethanol-fueled bus, manufactured in Brazil through the international program Bioethanol for Sustainable Transport, was presented this Thursday, December 20, at the Metropolitan Terminal São Bernardo by the project coordinator, José Roberto Moreira, who is also president at the Managing Board of the National Center for Reference in Biomass (Cenbio).

The bus, which has started its test-phase circulation, will travel the inter-municipal line linking the Greater São Paulo region to the Jabaquara neighborhood, in the south of the city, as part of the fleet of Sistema Metropolitano de Transporte (Metra -Metropolitan Transport System).

According to the University of São Paulo (USP), where technological research for the project was conducted, the test phase should last one year. During the period, technicians will evaluate performance by comparing it with the diesel-fueled model. The project cost 1.6 million Brazilian reais (US$ 887.9 million).

More Trucks and Buses

Volkswagen Trucks and Buses plans on investing 1 billion reais (US$ 554.9 million) between 2008 and 2012 in Brazil, in order to expand production capacity, and to develop new products and technology aimed at optimizing fuel consumption and preserving the environment.

The funds will be applied in Brazil, where the assembly company is presently the leading manufacturer of trucks. The announcement was made by Roberto Cortes, president of Volkswagen Trucks and Buses, to Brazil's President, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, in the Brazilian capital Brasí­lia.

The investment will be used for the development of new engines, creation of product lines in previously unexplored niches, new models and applications for the current line, and research on alternative sources and fuel efficiency. Capacity at the factory in the city of Resende, in the southeastern Brazilian state of Rio de Janeiro, will be expanded as well.

Volkswagen Trucks and Buses will have an output of nearly 50,000 units this year, a historic record. Besides supplying complete models to Brazil and foreign countries, the Resende factory sends kits for assembly in Mexico, South Africa and Colombia.

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