Blue Bird Vision Electric Type C School Buses – Available From Next Year

NOV 12 2017 BY MARK KANE 8

Blue Bird (not to be outdone by Thomas Built Buses and IC Bus) unveiled is own all-electric school bus – the Vision Electric Type C, at the NAPT conference in Columbus, OH.  Apparently all future school buses in America will be electric … at least if the recent debuts from this show are any indication.

Blue Bird Corporation

In the case of Blue Bird, the Vision Electric Type C is the company’s second offering, after the Type D Electric.  Interestingly, sales are slated to begin earlier than its show-competitors, in 2018.

The Blue Bird offers 100 miles (160 km) of range, using a 150 kWh battery. The electric powertrain is supplied by ADOMANI, with the drivetrain and vehicle control software developed and produced by their technology partner, Efficient Drivetrains.

“The latest in the lineup of Blue Bird electric buses integrates the ADOMANI/EDI drivetrain and vehicle control software and telematics, delivering zero-emissions driving with outstanding vehicle performance and torque. Blue Bird’s all-new Type C bus features up to 100 miles of electric range, with a full charge time of under 8 hours by utilizing a Type 2 charger and a battery capacity of 150kWh. This announcement follows a recent unveil of Blue Bird’s Type D All American Rear-Engine Electric school bus at the STN tradeshow in July 2017, powered by the same ADOMANI/EDI partnership.”

“The electric drivetrain technology used in Blue Bird’s Vision and All American RE Electric vehicles has already been proven on the road in over 2.5 million miles of driving. Further, Blue Bird pioneered its first electric bus in 1994 for a Southern California demonstration project and has extensive on-road experience. This experience enabled Blue Bird to secure a $4.4M Department of Energy grant earlier this year to develop a Vision Type C electric-powered bus, with full Vehicle to Grid (V2G) functionality. In partnership with ADOMANI/EDI, Blue Bird will deliver these products.”

Phil Horlock, president and CEO of Blue Bird Corporation said:

“We are excited to reveal our latest alternative-fuel option for the school bus market in 2018. We want to offer the broadest range of school bus products in the market and take pride in leading the industry in propane and gasoline-powered school buses. Electric-power is the next step on our journey, and our exclusive partnership with ADOMANI/EDI will bring both Type C and Type D electric buses to our customers next year. Blue Bird strives to be first to market in offering customers smart, innovative and affordable solutions that they want and value.”

Our unveiling of the all-new Vision Blue Bird Electric School Bus!

Posted by Blue Bird Corporation on Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Mark Terry, Blue Bird’s chief commercial officer said:

“The ride and drive feedback has been outstanding. Customers love the quiet ride and the proven drivetrain solution: many are already looking at placing orders as soon as the bus becomes available.”

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8 Comments on "Blue Bird Vision Electric Type C School Buses – Available From Next Year"

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Alright! I drove school bus when I was in college and I would love to have driven one of these. The only limiting factor seems to be rangr. I know of school field trips that are more than one hundred miles.

So what? School districts don’t replace their entire fleet at once. Cycle in some electric busses, and use the older diesels for the field trips. Most school buses drive less than 50 miles/day, even in geographically large districts. And those are heavy stop-and-go situations with lots of idling. School busses are a near ideal application for this sort of technology!

While I am not against electrical school buses I would have to think $ would be better spent on buses that drive more than what school buses typically do.

there is this already

School buses are one of the few applications where V2Grid makes some sense. Buses fill up Friday night and are available for grid support all weekend until midnight Sunday. Still don’t see an economic scenario that works without subsidy from local government though…

All Public Schools, are, by definition, funded by Government. School Boards collect School Taxes as part of Property Taxes, anyway, and buses are not Priuses, when it comes to Fuel Efficiency!

It should be time to build Aerodynamics into School Bus Design! That might help Gas Buses use a bit less fuel, but why should Kids have to walk by a stinking, ground level exhaust pipe each day? These are a great step forward!

Most school buses don’t spend a terrible amount of time at any speed, so aerodynamics don’t matter so much.

Wow, There is something like 400,000 school buses operating in the US.

I imagine something like 20000 would be sold each year. So the markets just shy of Tesla Model X numbers per annum. But displaces much more fuel and pollution cost.