Flumserberg: Fully Electric Snow Groomer In Use

Sustainability is the acid test at Flumserberg, because since the end of December 2023, Flumserberg Tourismus has been testing a Swiss premiere in collaboration with the Flumserberg mountain railways and the snow groomer manufacturer Prinoth - the only fully electric snow groomer available worldwide.

Due to the ongoing cross-country skiing trend and the unbroken demand for winter hiking, Flumserberg Tourismus has decided to replace its old piste machine with a new one. The Flumserberg offers 20 km of cross-country ski trails and 35 km of winter hiking trails, which are extremely attractive due to the guaranteed snow from December to April and the good connection to public transport. Since all new purchases and projects at Flumserberg are checked for sustainability, it was obvious for the board of Flumserberg Tourismus to examine an emission-free preparation option. On the one hand from an ecological point of view and on the other hand to act as a role model by being a pioneer.

A competent and innovative partner was found in the snow groomer manufacturer Prinoth, which offers the first and only series-produced fully electric snow groomer. This has been in use at Flumserberg since December and is being put through its paces during operations.

Preparation with a lot of emotions and few emissions

Thanks to the partnership with Murg Flums Energie, the snow groomer can be operated with 100% renewable energy, most of which comes from local hydropower. This is another step towards using resources carefully and responsibly. In addition, Rolf Blumer, Managing Director of Flumserberg Tourismus, mentions the collaboration with DesignWerk: “We are pleased that we are working with DesignWerk, an innovative company from Winterthur, and that we will be able to test the first mobile fast charging station with 88 kW in the next few days. This is also a Swiss premiere.” Thanks to this quick charging station, the charging time can be reduced to just under 2 hours and the mobile solution has a positive effect on the preparation sequence and time management.

Valuable insights from the tests

The experiences so far with the Prinoth Husky E-Motion and the quick charging station have been very positive. The snow groomer runs extremely quietly and the quality of the trail is excellent. This is also confirmed by the positive guest feedback. Thanks to the Eco mode, which was retrofitted during the test, it readjusts the maximum torque, which increased performance by around 15 percent. Nevertheless, it remains a challenge to prepare the large network of cross-country ski trails and winter hiking trails of 55 km with one battery charge. Rolf Blumer explains: “We are now trying to plan the preparation sequence so that we can save as much energy as possible and can recharge at the charging station halfway through the journey. This requires sensitivity from the driver and a lot of thinking and rethinking. As previously mentioned, the machine needs further testing to meet the needs of our demanding infrastructure. The snow groomer has worked very well so far and we can recommend it for grooming with a clear conscience. Although the purchase costs for the electric vehicle are higher than for a diesel engine, the electricity price pays off over the years and the idea of ​​sustainability is just as important.”

About design work

The company Designwerk Technologies AG stands for electromobility for commercial vehicles: developing, driving, charging and storing.

Since it was founded in 2008, Designwerk has been promoting electromobility with innovative products and projects and thus aims to spread sustainable mobility.

Under the Designwerk brand, small series electric trucks, mobile fast chargers, battery-backed fast charging stations in the megawatt range and modular high-voltage battery systems are developed and manufactured. The electric trucks include the first fully electric garbage trucks on Swiss roads and the electric trucks with the currently largest battery capacities and ranges. The chargers are widely used by European vehicle manufacturers. The modular traction batteries enable small and medium-sized vehicle manufacturers to successfully enter and switch to electromobility.

The Volvo Group has been involved in Designwerk since 2021. Today the company employs 230 people at its headquarters in Winterthur and at locations in Basel (Switzerland) and Lottstetten (Germany).


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