Our history

The history of SAFRA goes back to 1955, when the Albi-based company was building coach bodies on manufactured chassis units. 

Over the years, the company has learned to diversify its activities and skills, specialising in the urban transport sector in the 1970s.

 Our knowledge of the market and the needs of the transport authorities which we have acquired over the years has enabled us to develop and constantly improve our services. 

This experience now allows us to offer a complete range of solutions to meet the needs of our clients and reduce the carbon footprint of our passenger transport.

Discover how SAFRA has grown using the timeline below.


H2-PACK® certification

Approval of our H2-PACK® coach retrofit kit for Mercedes Intouro coaches.

homologation H2-PACK®


HYCITY® launched

HYCITY® launch on Saturday, October 7, 2023 at Busworld in Brussels!

HYCITY Dunkerque

Dunkerque - 10 HYCITY®

On July 03, 2023, the Communauté Urbaine Dunkerque Grand Littoral announced an order for 10 Hyciity buses for its DK’BUS public transport network.


Dublin - First international contract

In June 2023, Safra completes its first international contract with the repair of Dublin’s Citadis type 401 tramway.

retrofit - rétrofit

First presentation of the retrofit kit

First presentation of our hydrogen retrofit kit at the International Public Transport Summit (UITP) in Barcelona, June 4-7, 2023

SAFRA remporte le Prix du Service de Transport aux voyageurs

Trophées Hydrogénies

SAFRA wins an award for its program “Let’s accelerate together towards decarbonized mobility”, at the Trophées Hydrogénies.



SAFRA joins the ITxPT (Information Technology for Public Transport) association as an associate member in January 2023.


SAFRA markets VHYSION®, a connected portal for bus fleet management

To provide our customers with the best possible support, SAFRA has developed a tailor-made service dedicated to the maintenance and monitoring of their vehicle fleets. These services are brought together in a functional and intuitive portal, entirely developed by SAFRA, and marketed under the VHYSION® brand. 

H2-PACK® launched

At the autocar expo trade show, we announced the launch of our H2-PACK® hydrogen coach retrofit kit.

retrofit - rétrofit / logo h2pack

New visual identity - Logo

During the EUMO trade show in Paris on June 7, 2022, SAFRA presented its new visual identity with a new logo that represents the company’s values, while bringing modernity and simplicity.

Development of the HYCITY® hydrogen bus

Official design presentation at the European Mobility Expo (EUMO) in Paris on June 7, 2022.

HYCITY® is the latest addition to the company’s portfolio of products and services dedicated to accelerating low-carbon mobility, featuring the latest proven technologies and a sleek design.

Histoire - History / Logo de Transition Evergreen



Entry into the capital of SAFRA of our new shareholder, Transition Evergreen, managed by Aqua Asset Management.


Train Renovation

SAFRA wins its first contract for the renovation of SNCF trains in the Occitanie region. A new building has been built to accommodate the TER trains.

Histoire - History / Bus Businova hydrogène à côté du TER Occitanie
Bus Businova hydrogène TADAO


Businova H2

Launch and marketing of the Businova H2, the first hydrogen vehicle built in France.



Marketing of the first Businova. The city of Gaillac becomes the first French city to receive a Businova.

Histoire - History / Bus Businova de la ville de Gaillac
Histoire - History / 1er prototype de Businova exposé à Strasbourg


1st Businova prototype

Launch of the Businova program and unveiling of the first Businova prototype in Strasbourg.


Renovation of funicular

Diversification of renovation skills with the first funicular project for the city of Pau.

Histoire - History / Funiculaire de la ville de Pau rénové par SAFRA Rénovation
Histoire - History / Métro de Lille devant les locaux de SAFRA Rénovation


VAL's first renovation project

The renovation activity wins the contract for the renovation of the VAL in Lille, which includes the renovation of the bogies and the body.


Renovation of bogies

First railway mechanics site with the renovation of bogies

Histoire - History / Atelier de SAFRA où un collaborateur travaille sur la rénovation de boggies
Histoire - History / Métro de Lyon devant les locaux de SAFRA Rénovation


New skills

SAFRA extends its competences in railway equipment with the renovation of the metros of Lyon and Marseille.


Creation of the design office

Creation of the design office for new renovation projects and the first discussions on the construction of buses under the Businova® brand.

Histoire - History / Bureau d'études de SAFRA
Histoire - History / Tramway de St-Etienne devant les locaux de SAFRA Rénovation


First renovation project

SAFRA wins its first renovation project for railway equipment with the Saint-Etienne tramway.


New building for the Body Shop

The activities of the Carrosserie Industrielle still need space, and a more spacious building is therefore built at 25 rue Copernic, a little further in the Fonlabour area. Several plots of land were acquired in anticipation of further expansion.

Histoire - History / Chantier de construction du nouveau bâtiment dédié à l'activité carrosserie de SAFRA en 1995
Histoire - History / Bus de 1981 dans un atelier de réparation


New activity

Diversification of our activities with the launch of the renovation of public transport buses.


The Esperou-Bodoira bodywork

The story begins when Roger Bodoira founds with Marcel Esperou the ESPEROU-BODOIRA bodywork, located in rue de la Poudrière in Albi. 
Marcel Espérou was CEO until 1962, when he sold his shares to Roger Bodoira.
The company is specialized in the bodywork of coaches on chassis-cabs manufacturers.

Histoire - History / Autocar des années 1950