Pennsylvania DOT settles on Azure Dynamics hybrid buses

The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation likes what it sees in hybrid buses from Azure Dynamics. PennDOT placed an order for 10 eighteen-passenger Azure/StarTrans Hybrid Para-transit Citibus vehicles and may order 15 more in the future. The PennDOT hybrids will have a few specific abilities, including "engine-off driving while electronically supporting key ancillary functions like air conditioning, power steering and braking," according to Azure's announcement of the sale (available after the jump). Considering that the hybrid system with the GM Vortec 4.8L engine that powers the bus is more fuel efficient (by 40 percent) and requires much less maintenance than similar, conventionally-equipped buses, they give Governor Ed Rendell another chance to talk up his state's energy saving plans. No delivery date was given, but the hybrids will be used in York County when they are ready.

[Source: Azure Dynamics Corporation]

Pennsylvania Department of Transportation orders hybrid buses from Azure Dynamics

OAK PARK, MI, June 23 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Azure Dynamics Corporation (TSX: AZD, LSE: ADC & OTCQX: AZDDF) - ("Azure" or the "Company"), a leading developer of hybrid electric and electric powertrains for commercial vehicles, announced today it has received an order from the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation ("PennDOT") for 10 hybrid buses with an option for 15 additional buses at a later date. PennDOT has ordered the eighteen passenger Azure/StarTrans Hybrid Para-transit Citibus for delivery in 2008.

"Azure's hybrid technology continues to gain traction with proactive fleet managers who value our performance, significant fuel economy improvements, emissions reductions and long-term maintenance cost savings," said Scott Harrison, Azure Dynamics' Chief Executive Officer. "We see the PennDOT order as further validation that our technology answers stringent market demands."

The Azure Series-Hybrid CitiBus system specified by PennDOT has unique attributes like engine-off driving while electronically supporting key ancillary functions like air conditioning, power steering and braking. The powertrain, with a GM Vortec 4.8L engine, offers over a 40% improvement in fuel economy, and a 30% reduction in carbon emissions in city conditions. The powertrain also offers a 25% reduction in engine maintenance and a 75% reduction in brake maintenance versus conventionally equipped competitors.

At a press conference at the Pennsylvania capital on Thursday Governor Edward G. Rendell said, "The only way to secure our energy future is to take steps now that allow Pennsylvania to be more energy efficient and conserve our natural resources. We cannot reduce our dependence on foreign oil unless we make better use of the alternative transportation options and invest in our own home-grown fuel resources as proposed by the PennSecurity Fuels Initiative."

The Governor further stated that "Energy independence begins at home, and commuters can do their part to help reduce energy consumption and reduce Pennsylvania's dependence on foreign oil by relying more on public transit or car pooling."

The first ten Azure Dynamics Para-transit hybrid buses ordered by PennDOT will be operated by Rabbit Transit in York County, PA and will expand its shared-ride program.

The PennDOT contract was awarded via Arcola Bus Sales. The Azure bus purchase advances PennDot's strategic focuses of balancing social, economic and environmental concerns in transportation programs for optimal effectiveness and efficiency of services offered.

About Azure Dynamics

Azure Dynamics Corporation (TSX: AZD) (OTCQX: AZDDF) is a world leader in the development and production of hybrid electric and electric components and powertrain systems for commercial vehicles. Azure is strategically targeting the commercial delivery vehicle and shuttle bus markets and is currently working internationally with various partners and customers. The Company is committed to providing customers and partners with innovative, cost-efficient, and environmentally-friendly energy management solutions. For more information please visit

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