Yet another icon of American transportation is getting electrified. Sports cars, sedans, hatchbacks, and vans joined the party, and now even the humble school bus has been invited. Bus maker Trans Tech announced the new eTrans, a 42-passenger bus that combines classic yellow-and-black styling with a modern aerodynamic look.
Built on a chassis made by Smith Electric Vehicles, a leading manufacturer of commercial EVs, the new kid transporter will go into production in 2012. It sports a 120-kilowatt electric induction motor, two 278-volt lithium-ion batteries, a regenerative braking system and a small natural gas or propane power unit to run the heating and air conditioning systems. Top speed will be 60 mph, and the range should be 100-130 miles.
“The eTrans will be ideal for short, defined, repetitive routes,” said Dan Daniels, president of Trans Tech. “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.”
Image: Trans Tech