Manufacturer Trans Tech Bus will soon offer its customers a "green" solution for transporting students to and from school with its eTrans electric-only bus.
The 42-passenger school bus will be equipped with a 120-kW (161 horsepower) electric motor powered by a pair of 278-volt lithium-ion battery packs. Moreover, the eTrans features an auxiliary unit fueled by either compressed natural gas or propane and that runs the bus' heating and air conditioning systems.
The eTrans' range depends on operating conditions, but Trans Tech claims bus drivers will be able to travel approximately 100 to 130 miles on a charge. The bus' top speed checks in at a city-capable 50 miles per hour. Dan Daniels, president of Trans Tech, states:
The eTrans will be ideal for short, defined, repetitive routes. In addition, given that most school buses operate during the day, school districts and bus contractors will be able to take advantage of lower, off-peak electricity rates by recharging their fleets at night, when demand is at its lowest.
The eTrans was officially unveiled on October 23 and is scheduled to launch in limited numbers in early 2012. Full-scale production is set to commence in mid-to late 2012. In terms of price, that's not been made public yet and Daniels says that Trans Tech is working to ensure the eTrans is "priced competitively."