EBSF, 3iBS, ZeEUS, EBSF_2 and ELIPTIC are research projects funded by the European Commission, with the aim of developing a new generation of buses across Europe. For all, the common task is two-pronged (i) it is necessary to develop innovative solutions to increase the attractiveness of this mode and (ii) to operate more environmentally-friendly vehicles. Prototypes with more comfortable and accessible internal layouts, advanced ITS-based solutions, new engines designed to save fuel and eco-driving are key working areas. The environmental concern is behind the majority of the tested innovations. These projects are based on demonstrators, that is the innovative measures are tested in real urban environments. The assessment is a classical before-vs-during the implementation of measures comparison. A transferability study is aimed to assess the theoretical exportability of the tested measures across Europe. Results so far stressed contrasting aspects within a common vision for the development of a new generation of buses: although stakeholders are willing to innovate bus fleets by introducing more sustainable propulsion systems, conventional modes are still favoured and the environmental concern is not a driver to export the tested measures. The objectives of the paper are to describe such outcomes, identify reasons which prevent a wider exploitation of cleaner buses, provide possible explanations and suggest recommendations to develop “green” awareness among bus stakeholders.
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