Electric bus manufacturer Proterra has partnered with Japanese conglomerate Mitsui to create a $200-million credit to scale up Proterra’s battery leasing program. Proterra customers will be able to purchase an electric bus and lease the batteries over the 12-year lifetime of the bus.
Through the battery lease, Proterra says the initial capital expense for the electric bus will be similar to a diesel or CNG bus, and customers can utilize the operating funds previously earmarked for fuel to pay for the battery lease. The 12-year lease agreement provides a performance warranty on the batteries as well as new batteries at the mid-life mark.
The two companies have also established a program to use the leased batteries in secondary applications after the end of their useful life in a vehicle. Proterra says its E2 battery packs are designed with secondary usage in mind, as they feature simplified integration for easy removal and a form factor that enables repurposing.
The bus maker says that more than a dozen customers, including Park City, Utah and Moline, Illinois, are already using or have agreed to use the battery lease program.
“We’re seeing innovation both in technology and in businesses around the mobility sector,” said Yosuke Matsumoto, General Manager at Mitsui. “There is a unique opportunity for markets to provide the necessary capital to accelerate the imminent transition to 100 percent battery-electric bus fleets and reduce carbon emissions.”