Foothill Transit First To Submit Order For 2nd Gen Proterra Electric Bus

JUL 23 2014 BY MARK KANE 15

Proterra Solution

Proterra Solution

It took a few months since the premiere of the second-generation Proterra electric bus, but finally we see the first order for this new model.

Its Foothill Transit from California who becomes the first transit agency to buy the 2nd-gen electric bus called Proterra Solution.  Two buses were ordered.

Foothill Transit already has in its fleet several Proterra buses from the previous generation and some quick charging stations, so it should be easy to add two more (delivery expected in December 2014).

“Leading battery-electric transit bus manufacturer Proterra Inc. has announced the first sale of its second-generation EV bus to Foothill Transit of West Covina, Calif. Foothill Transit became Proterra’s first customer and the first agency in the U.S. to operate EV buses in revenue service in 2010. Based on the sustainability, fuel savings and proven performance of those buses, Foothill Transit has agreed to purchase two more buses from Proterra, moving the agency closer to its goal of expanding electric bus service into other lines.”

Doug Tessitor the chair of the Foothill Transit Executive Board commented:

“These buses are a much needed innovative step for our region. These vehicles are part of our commitment to sustainability and clean air. We want our communities, our neighbors, to be proud of their public transit system. These new buses will debut here first and we’re very excited to see them on the road.”

Ryan Popple, CEO, Proterra Inc. stated:

“Always a visionary and agent of positive change, Foothill Transit was our first customer and has led the way in helping us commercialize electric vehicle (EV) technology for urban transit. Innovation doesn’t happen in a vacuum; it requires partnership. Proterra understands the unique needs of the transit industry, and we are proud of the strong partnerships we have developed with agencies like Foothill Transit and pleased with the positive results these partnerships have already achieved in terms of reducing energy costs and minimizing environmental impact.”

Categories: Bus


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15 Comments on "Foothill Transit First To Submit Order For 2nd Gen Proterra Electric Bus"

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Philadelphia Needs You.
Don’t you have an east coast sales force?

no comment

it is great to see electrification coming to mass transit, but this is a concept that really does work better in warmer climates. imagine all the electricity that it would take to heat that bus during the winter in Philadelphia.


They don’t have to heat it like a living room. People riding public transportation in the winter are usually dressed for the occasion.

Micke Larsson

*lol*… Philadelphia is a part of the warmer climate. 😉 It’s still in the sub tropical zone (even though the furthest north of it ;))

You can check out where you find a company with electric buses in Umeå which has an average temperature that is 20 degrees lower.

no comment

you could probably cover a lot of bus routes, especially in a city, with a system in which you can get 1 hour of driving with a 5 minute recharge. keep in mind that EV driving range has a seasonal character in which you get less range in colder temperatures (you have to read information critically as i suspect that the claims made on that website are best case scenarios that would apply during the warmer time of the year); but even if you had to go to a 10 minute recharge cycle it would still be workable for many bus routes because many buses don’t operate continuously, but they get to the end of the route and stop before beginning again. during the waiting time you could recharge the bus for the return route.

Micke Larsson

Best case scenarios isn’t really what you want to publish when you are a company with a large part of your potential customers living in the arctic 😛
The point still being that if it works good there then there is no problem to do it in a relatively warm place like Philly, which barely have any winter at all and even the worst part of the year is mild.

George Bower

Just as a refresh I had to look and see how big the battery is in this bus.

I couldn’t find the kwh rating in the specs at:

but I back calculated it from the 20 MPGe and range of 26 miles and I get 43 kwh. That is a pretty small battery for a bus this size as it is only 2X the Leaf battery.

So as we all know this bus relies on fast charging to keep going. The advantage of the small battery is that it keeps the price of the bus down (in theory).

Then I got to wondering who makes the composite bus body.

I assumed all along that it was carbon composite but it is NOT carbon composite. It is balsa wood and fiberglass:

=another reason why this bus SHOULD be cost effective. Hopefully it will catch on and be a serious competitor to the BYD bus.



Rob Stark

Electric carriages.

Or stagecoaches.

Jouni Valkonen

Fast charging + small battery is not making bus cheaper, because fast charging degrades battery faster than regular charging. Also smaller battery has lower total mileage because it is smaller battery and less miles per cycle and it is harder to maintain the charge level of battery at favorable level. Lithium batteries do not like full charges and deep discharges.

E.g. Tesla does not allow 60 kWh Tesla to be supercharged without additional fee, because smaller battery cannot accept as readily fast charging and therefore it may have an influence on battery warranty issues.

Anthony Fiti

I thought the Proterra busses used Lithium Titanate batteries that are designed to handle multiple quick charges per day.


Exactly. Jouni is obviously unawaere of different battery chemistries.

Jouni Valkonen

It does not make significant difference. What it means in practice that titanate batteries has higher power density and lower energy density. It does not change the economics compared to NCA, NCM or Iron-phosphate batteries.

no comment

26 miles will cover a lot of bus routes, and in california you can pretty reliably get that range year round. buses run their routes one way, stop, and then go on the return route. during the stop time you can recharge the battery, so the key is how quickly you can recharge.

maybe you can’t use electric buses on all bus routes, but there are a lot of bus routes where you can use electric buses.


Interesting the range is much lower than the BYD buses. The three BYDs at Stanford go over a hundred miles and all day on a charge. How does the pricing compare to those at around 550k?