has begun a 4-city "California Clean Bus Tour" with the unveiling of its EcoRide B35 all-electric transit bus in San Jose. The lightweight, composite-bodied people mover features the 10 minute recharge-capable TerraVolt™ Energy Storage System, said to be based around batteries from Altairnano, and motors from UQM Technologies. Its regenerative brakes can recapture up to 90 percent of the vehicle's kinetic energy and help it achieve a range between 30 and 40 miles. Although, like many alternative drivetrains, it has a higher upfront pricetag than its diesel counterparts, the company estimates the difference can be absorbed well before the end of its expected 12-year life through lower energy and maintenance costs. Proterra also has a plug-in hydrogen fuel cell version of the bus that will begin service in Burbank this Spring.

California has a mandate that dictates 15 percent of all buses added to fleets after 2011 be zero-emission vehicles. Founder and CTO of the Golden, Colorado company, Dale Hill says, ""The fact is, emissions free transit is not a 'nice to have,' it is a must have for clean, healthy communities across California and the U.S." Indeed it is, Mr. Hill. Full press release after the break.

[Source: Proterra]


Proterra Brings Future of Green Commercial Transit To California Cities With Zero Emission Clean Bus Tour
Proterra Unveils EcoRide BE35 Zero-Emission in San Jose

San Jose, CA - Proterra, the leading innovator and manufacturer of clean commercial transit solutions from city transit buses to class 4-8 trucks, kicked-off its first ever California Clean Bus Tour in San Jose with the unveiling of its zero emission fast-charge battery-electric transit bus. The EcoRide BE35 is designed to help communities significantly reduce air and noise pollution while dramatically reducing vehicle operating costs.

After the initial launch in San Jose, Proterra will make stops in selected California cities including Los Angeles, Sacramento, and San Francisco. Proterra will be meeting with energy, environmental, and municipal stakeholders as it introduces its clean transit solutions to help the state meet its emission reduction goals. The EcoRide BE35 results in up to a 400 percent improvement in fuel economy, and up to $310,000 savings in total lifetime fuel expenses as compared to a conventional diesel bus and over $15 million in savings for a transit bus fleet of 50.

"The fact is, emissions free transit is not a 'nice to have,' it is a must have for clean, healthy communities across California and the U.S.," said Dale Hill, Founder and Chief Technology Officer, Proterra. "That is why we're thrilled to bring our clean transit solutions to California - where transit agencies need an economical solution available today to make progress toward recent emissions standards passed by the California Air Resources Board."

Proterra's Approach

Built from the ground-up as a battery-electric zero emission transit vehicle in Colorado, Proterra's transit solution boasts innovative advancements that significantly reduce the lifetime cost of ownership including:

* TerraVolt™ Energy Storage System - the industry's only system that can be fully charged in less than 10 minutes; and the longest lasting energy storage system available for heavy duty applications;
* Flexible ProDrive™ and vehicle control system that can operate in battery-electric mode or with any small auxiliary power unit (APU) to extend vehicle range when needed;
* All-electric components optimized through vehicle management systems to rduce energy usage throughout the vehicle's operating cycle;
* Regenerative braking system utilizing the UQM PowerPhase 150 that enables the EcoRide BE35 to recapture over 90% of the vehicle's kinetic energy available during braking; and
* Sophisticated battery management system operates at the 'cell' level to optimize energy efficiency and system life.

Fighting Harmful Diesel Pollutants

Proterra's focus on the California market is directly related to the state's high pollution levels, much of which are tracked back to diesel engines. The Clean Air Task Force notes that by reducing diesel fine particle emissions 50 percent by 2010, 75 percent by 2015, and 85 percent by 2020 would save nearly 100,000 American lives between now and 2030.

"California is a high priority for Proterra since five of the top 10 most polluted cities in America are located there, according to the American Lung Association's 2008 State of the Air Report," said Jeff Granato, President and CEO, Proterra. "The solution is in our hands to help cities reduce air and noise pollution, and the state and federal policies are also in place to begin to take clean commuting from a vision to a reality in 2009. We're excited to introduce the EcoRide BE35 to California as an immediate next step transit agencies can take to achieve emissions free transit."

About Proterra

Answering the international call for efficient, cost-effective and environmentally responsible transit solutions, Colorado based Porterra has been designing and manufacturing the world's most efficient commercial vehicle technologies since 2004. With hybrid and battery-electric buses that are built from the ground-up in Colorado, Proterra has patented clean transit technology serving the commercial sector with solutions for city transit buses to class 4-8 trucks.

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