• Aug 20, 2014
Your children or grandchildren may very well be riding an electric bus to school soon, and probably sooner still if they live in California. We've just recently seen the funding of the National Strategies demo buses. Now another fully electric school bus has been approved in the Golden State. The California Highway Patrol has greenlighted the Adomani EV bus for use in the Gilroy Unified School District (GUSD).

Lucky pupils in the Garlic Capital of the World will be riding a 2007 Blue Bird All American school bus, converted from diesel to electric by Adomani. It has a range of 40 miles, plenty of charge to meet the route's 22 miles. The EV bus uses the same charging plug as the Nissan Leaf and Chevrolet Volt for easy charging. The GUSD has installed solar panels to power its charging station, making the Adomani Blue Bird truly capable of emission-free rides.

The bus was apparently quick to be approved upon inspection, with verbal approval coming just one day later. Newly appointed Adomani board member Jim Reynolds, a school bus industry expert, says, "That is by far the fastest I have seen approval come in. I was anticipating a few months of processing."

Adomani wants to convert more school and commercial buses, providing up to 100 miles of electric range, and says it can retrofit the vehicles in a matter of a couple weeks. The company, pleased with the swift turnaround of the Gilroy project, is moving its headquarters from Florida to California. Adomani founder and CTO says, "After the conversion for Gilroy, moving to California seemed like the right fit, though we plan to retrofit vehicles throughout the country." Learn more in the video below or over at Domestic Fuel.



I'm reporting this comment as:

Reported comments and users are reviewed by Autoblog staff 24 hours a day, seven days a week to determine whether they violate Community Guideline. Accounts are penalized for Community Guidelines violations and serious or repeated violations can lead to account termination.


    • 1 Second Ago
  • 15 Comments
      Mark Schaffer
      • 4 Months Ago
      Children have high metabolic rates and are more sensitive to pollution so doesn't it make sense to not expose them to diesel or other fossil fuel combustion byproducts???
      elctrNmbliT
      • 4 Months Ago
      I could see another benefit of using electric buses. You have a school full of over energized children that surely could burn some of that energy off during recess powering generator merry-go-rounds. Let's say 400 children each producing 80 w of generated power for 30 minutes. 400 x 80w x .5hrs = 16 kwh Well ok, it won't power the bus fleet but it would at least charge my Volt. ;)
      JVP
      • 4 Months Ago
      I've always thought that school bus routes were the perfect first application for heavy duty EV trucks. Short, fixed routes, twice a day, with several hours in between. Surprised we haven't seen more of this, but I suspect school budgets don't have a lot of room for higher capital costs without fed or state grants. I'd LOVE to see more of this. The big benefits are 1) less diesel inhaled by kids, 2) way quieter for those of us that live on bus routes. Hopefully the air compressors that run brakes could be made quieter, too. The quiet factor is a huge upside that seems to be overlooked on urban truck/bus routes.
        Chris
        • 4 Months Ago
        @JVP
        many districts run three routes each morning and afternoon, so is this 22 miles for all three morning routes or is this bus for only one route in the morning?
      Mark Schaffer
      • 4 Months Ago
      Leave out the paranoia about government please. No government, no civilization.
      Luciano
      • 4 Months Ago
      It would be interesting to use solar panels on top of the bus. That's a large area!
        Jim McL
        • 4 Months Ago
        @Luciano
        I doubt you could collect more than about 5 kW from the roof of that bus with typical solar panels. The bus motor probably uses >100 kW. So as usual, you are far better off with ground mounted panels supplying those dual 18 kW charger ports.
      Luciano
      • 4 Months Ago
      It would be interesting to use solar panels on top of the bus. That's a large area!
      Spec
      • 4 Months Ago
      Yes, someone did challenge Big Oil and Big Government . . . and eventually won. See Episode 7 of Cosmos: A SpaceTime Odyssey. It is on NetFlix.
      Mark Schaffer
      • 4 Months Ago
      Children have high metabolic rates and are more sensitive to pollution so doesn't it make sense to not expose them to diesel or other fossil fuel combustion byproducts???
      Mark Schaffer
      • 4 Months Ago
      Children have high metabolic rates and are more sensitive to pollution so doesn't it make sense to not expose them to diesel or other fossil fuel combustion byproducts???
        Levine Levine
        • 4 Months Ago
        @Mark Schaffer
        For over 80 years, Big Oil used tetra-ethyl lead as a gasoline additive with the blessing of Big Government. The lead emission injected into the air and environment from millions of tailpipes amounts to several thousands of ton every year poisoning people and children and yet no one challenged Big Oil and the corrupt Big Government. It is not a surprise that big money can buy so much silence and propaganda as to a known health risk. It is a surprise that are so many gullible Americans.
      elctrNmbliT
      • 4 Months Ago
      I could see another benefit of using electric buses. You have a school full of over energized children that surely could burn some of that energy off during recess powering generator merry-go-rounds. Let's say 400 children each producing 80 w of generated power for 30 minutes. 400 x 80w x .5hrs = 16 kwh Well ok, it won't power the bus fleet but it would at least charge my Volt. ;)
      Levine Levine
      • 4 Months Ago
      Only 40 miles range? Lead acid battery?
        Spec
        • 4 Months Ago
        @Levine Levine
        Big heavy bus given a battery not much larger than needed in order to cover the route.
    • Load More Comments