Association of German Transport Companies

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Association of German Transport Companies
Verband deutscher Verkehrsunternehmen logo.svg
Full nameAssociation of German Transport Companies
Native nameVerband Deutscher Verkehrsunternehmen e.V.
PredecessorVerband öffentlicher Verkehrsbetriebe
Membersca. 600
Head unionJürgen Fenske / Oliver Wolff
Office locationCologne

The Association of German Transport Companies is the umbrella organization of organizations of transit authorities and other public transport companies. The membership fluctuates in the range of about 600 transport companies. It is a member of the International Association of Public Transport.

The current organization Verband Deutscher Verkehrsunternehmen (VdV) was founded in 1991 with main office in Cologne. The predecessor is the Verband öffentlicher Verkehrsbetriebe (VöV) (Association of [German] Public Transport Companies) that was founded in 1949 in Stuttgart with main office in Essen until 1959 when it moved to Cologne.

There is a predecessor for the VöV as well deriving from umbrella railway organizations in the early 19th century that were forming a subsidiary of Verein Deutscher Straßen- und Kleinbahnverwaltungen (Association of German Tram and Light Railway Authorities) in 1895 in Munich. With a broadened scope of non-railway transportation it changed its name to Verband Deutscher Verkehrsverwaltungen (Association of German Transport Authorities) in 1928 with the main office in Berlin. With the Nazi Gleichschaltung its functions were integrated into the Reich Ministry of Transport (Reichsverkehrsministerium) requiring a new start after the war.

The association is not only an interest group but it serves as a standards organization within Germany. Its first project in post-war times was to settle on a tramway model that could quickly replace the demolished vehicle fleet throughout. The DÜWAG was contracted to refurbish various tram chassis with a standard body (Aufbauwagen) in the range of 355 motor cars and 248 trailer cars from 1948 to 1950. The next generation tram type was named Verbandswagen (association car [type]) with 206 motor cars and 326 trailer cars produced from 1951 to 1958.

During the 1960s bus transport seemed to be more feasible than tram transport so that the association mandated the design of a new standard city bus (Standard-Linienbus) with multiple generations produced by various manufacturers from 1968 to the mid of the 1980s. Starting in the mid-1980s a new series of buses (Standard-Linienbus II) is recommended.

A modern field of standardization is the e-ticketing with a VDV-Kernapplikation (VdV core application) that partner companies can use to provide new ticketing solutions.