In today's cellular networks, an increasing number of connected devices on-board in fast-moving vehicles would require more efficient handover (HO) procedures. To this end, we investigate the utilization of mobile relay nodes (MRNs) in vehicles to facilitate efficient HO and HO-related power consumption reductions for all on-board user equipments (UEs). In particular, the potential gains in terms of HO rate, HO failure ratio (HOFR), ping-pong (PP) rate, and total power consumption are studied for different UE cluster sizes. To eliminate the measurement power-consuming procedure, uplink (UL) reference signals (RS) transmitted by UEs are exploited. Four different case scenarios are simulated utilizing both the DL and UL RS based HO procedure, with and without deploying MRNs on the buses traveling along the cell edges of surrounding macro BSs. Simulation results indicate that the UL RS based HO procedure can improve HO performance significantly because it reduces the air-interface signaling messages, namely the measurement report (MeasReport) transmission and reception. Also, in terms of power consumption, deploying MRNs is a more attractive solution with substantial power reduction for onboard UEs of higher cluster size.