GM Volt Forum banner

1 - 14 of 14 Posts

·
Administrator
Joined
·
19,980 Posts
Discussion Starter #1

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,431 Posts
Half million dollar price premium. Ouch.
If this bus can carry over 50 passengers, the cost per seat would be about $10,000, or less than the Gen 1 Volt. The Gen 2 Volt have five seats so it is cheaper per seat. But considering how many trips you will need to move 50 passengers, the bus still wins. So as a people mover, this is the most cost efficient vehicle on the road.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,439 Posts
Half a million is just the price premium over a diesel bus. Total cost starts at $799,000. Not bashing it. I hope it catches on. A city near LA has an order in, and Philadelphia has some electrics, according to the article. These will be an easier sell if they can get the price more competitive. Maybe the gigafactory will help. If you think about how noisy and dirty a diesel bus is, these will be so much nicer for the riders and the entire city.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
118 Posts
It's been a while since I've been in the area to check if this is still the case, but the Boston area has long had electric buses on some routes. The difference is that they're battery-free -- the routes have overhead power lines. This of course limits the mobility of the buses, but there's no need to carry around the batteries. I used to live in an apartment in Cambridge that was served by such a bus line, and I took it regularly.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,992 Posts
It's been a while since I've been in the area to check if this is still the case, but the Boston area has long had electric buses on some routes. The difference is that they're battery-free -- the routes have overhead power lines. This of course limits the mobility of the buses, but there's no need to carry around the batteries. I used to live in an apartment in Cambridge that was served by such a bus line, and I took it regularly.
What goes around comes around as they say. Below is a like of a duel powered bus, electric/gas. The second link describes it.

http://www.lightrailnow.org/images/nwk-hist-tb-asv.jpg
http://www.lightrailnow.org/news/n_nj001.htm

They are called Trolleybus apparently.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trolleybus
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,520 Posts
Half a million is just the price premium over a diesel bus. Total cost starts at $799,000. Not bashing it. I hope it catches on. A city near LA has an order in, and Philadelphia has some electrics, according to the article. These will be an easier sell if they can get the price more competitive. Maybe the gigafactory will help. If you think about how noisy and dirty a diesel bus is, these will be so much nicer for the riders and the entire city.
This is one to stick on a busy route and maximize use of.

Hopefully it'll also not be as rattly as city diesel buses often are.

Mind you, I went on the electric bus in Quebec City. It "rolled" electric, but there was something noisy and rattly running at intervals.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
118 Posts
They are called Trolleybus apparently.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trolleybus
In fact, the third photo down on the Wikipedia entry is of an MBTA bus in Cambridge -- in fact, I'm pretty sure I took the route displayed on the bus in the photo from time to time. The one in the Wikipedia photo looks a little more modern than the ones I rode, though (in the early 1990s).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,150 Posts
$500k to $1M City buses are the norm. And that isn't really the cost to the city. The city spends more money on enough bus drivers and maintenance. Usually USDOT has grants that the cities can use to help purchase the bus. I know in my previous location at one point we could have gotten for "free" as many buses as we wanted to ADD to our fleet. (the catch being ADD) The sticking point on the finances was putting them to use. It isn't just ONE driver per bus either. Unless all you want to do is run the bus around 6-7 hours per day and only 5 days per week, which isn't effective.

Yes, this is an old idea/use brought back in a modern way. However, older diesel buses belch soot and stink, although the newer ones are better (ones with DPF and SCR technology) - and there is no reason to run high voltage power lines either. The other nice thing is that you are not dependant on constant power. Get a black out and the buses/trains would stop... Buses are used in this case to get people from A to B when that occurs on an electric line...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
118 Posts
older diesel buses belch soot and stink, although the newer ones are better (ones with DPF and SCR technology)
FWIW, the transit system in my area (Rhode Island -- RIPTA) has buses that are marked as being diesel hybrids. I've seen them at idle in parking lots, and their diesel engines are clearly running, so whatever it is that's "hybrid" about them, they aren't quite like a Prius, much less a Volt. I don't know the details of their pollution controls, but I can still smell diesel exhaust when they drive past me (when I'm walking).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,945 Posts
FWIW, the transit system in my area (Rhode Island -- RIPTA) has buses that are marked as being diesel hybrids. I've seen them at idle in parking lots, and their diesel engines are clearly running, so whatever it is that's "hybrid" about them, they aren't quite like a Prius, much less a Volt. I don't know the details of their pollution controls, but I can still smell diesel exhaust when they drive past me (when I'm walking).
Diesels still use nearly no fuel idling, and a lot lower emissions, than they do starting, so the idling thing doesn't bother me. Where diesels DO use a lot of fuel is in speeding up, being loaded at other than whatever The Best RPM Is for that particular engine, etc. So using electric traction motors with a small (relatively -- might still be 75-100 kwh) battery pack combined with a diesel generator set and have the engine run either at idle OR at 2150 RPM (or whichever is right) with enough output to both move the bus and recharge the pack, and give it a fairly wide state of charge window to be in would be a very efficient way to power a vehicle that spends MOST of its road time speeding up or slowing to a stop every 150 meters. Don't even bother coupling the diesel from directly powering the wheels.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,499 Posts
These have been on downtown streets in San Antonio for three years now.
http://www.viainfo.net/Planning/Arc.aspx

They're made by Proterra, but are an older, smaller model.

The buses will circulate through downtown, and they will be recharged at VIA’s Robert Thompson Transit Station at the Alamodome. This station can recharge a bus in ten minutes, so they can be back on the road in no time at all.
Edit: Since our transit system, our electric utility and the Alamodome are all owned by the City of San Antonio and the buses are recharged in part with the utility's solar and wind-produced electricity, it's a win-win-win for us. It helps to keep us out of "non-attainment" status with the state's air quality standards. Missing the mark there would trigger tailpipe emissions testing as a metric for vehicle inspections at a huge $$$ premium - like those in Houston, Austin-metro and Dallas. As of last year in Texas, if your vehicle cannot pass State Inspection, you can't renew your registration sticker.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
902 Posts
I rode on a test drive in the standard Proterra bus. I am a strong advocate of a transition to electric public transit. However, the Proterra with the standard motor lacked power to get above 25 MPH on our grade up Boreas Pass in Breckenridge. On our Boreas Pass Route, the Proterra lost 40% of its charge during ascent to about 11,000 feet, regaining half of that during the descent. The entire loop is a half-hour trip, definitely NOT 350 miles of range. Since the quick-chargers recommended during lay-overs are as costly as the buses, I suggested a hybrid system of attaching a gasoline-powered generator to idle all day to extend the range, without gaining any interest from the Proterra representatives. My other concerns include the need for a supplemental cabin heating system, since our winter temperatures drop below zero and passenger comfort as well as windshield de-fogging are essential for any bus operating under our extreme weather conditions. By-the-way, the Proterra station quick-charger is not a non-contact inductive charger, which would be extremely wasteful with its loss of energy during transfer; the bus is guided into a slot for direct contact with a high-voltage charging arm.
 
1 - 14 of 14 Posts
Top