New Flyer Wins Canada’s Largest Contract For 40 Xcelsior CHARGE Buses

AUG 30 2018 BY MARK KANE 17

Montréal and Laval ordered New Flyer buses with 466 kWh battery packs

New Flyer received Canada’s largest ever battery-electric bus contract for 40 forty-foot, Xcelsior CHARGE buses for Montréal (30) and Laval (10).

Both transit agencies – the Société de transport de Montréal (“STM”) and the Société de transport de Laval (“STL”) intend to purchase only all-electric buses from 2025 and 2023 respectively, which means those orders will be just bigger and bigger in the future.

New Flyer will equip the buses with rather huge 466 kWh batteries, which should be enough for a few hundred miles.

“New Flyer Canada ULC (“New Flyer”), the Canadian subsidiary of NFI Group Inc. (“NFI”), the largest transit bus and motor coach manufacturer and parts distributor in North America, today announced that the Société de transport de Montréal (“STM”) and the Société de transport de Laval (“STL”) have awarded New Flyer a contract for 40 forty-foot, zero-emission, battery-electric Xcelsior CHARGE™ heavy-duty transit buses. New Flyer bid successfully against two competitors, confirming its position as now serving all 25 of the largest transit agencies in North America.

The notice to proceed for the pilot bus is expected October 31, 2018, and the notice to proceed for the production buses is expected following the nine month review of the pilot bus.

The new order, supported by funding from provincial and federal governments, includes 10 buses for STL and 30 buses for STM, together making it the largest ever Canadian battery-electric bus procurement to date. The purchase furthers efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by exploring unique electric mobility solutions to create more livable cities. Currently, both agencies operate battery-electric bus pilot programs, and intend to be fully electric in future with STL and STM committing to buy only electric buses as of 2023 and 2025, respectively.

The buses will use depot-based charging to slow-charge the buses, with 466kWh batteries on board.”

“With the announcement, Laval and Montréal join the likes of Toronto, Vancouver, Los Angeles, Minneapolis, New York, Portland, Palm Springs, and other cities across North America operating New Flyer’s zero-emission, battery-electric Xcelsior CHARGE™ buses.”

Jennifer McNeill, Vice President, Sales and Business Development said:

“New Flyer is proud to deliver on Canada’s largest battery-electric, zero-emission bus procurement, bringing electric mobility to the communities of Laval and Montréal. We remain committed to creating more livable cities through engineering smarter and more efficient buses, and working collaboratively with industry leaders such as STL and STM to deliver connected, zero-emission public transit solutions.”

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17 Comments on "New Flyer Wins Canada’s Largest Contract For 40 Xcelsior CHARGE Buses"

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Come on Grand River Transit… take note of this. We are the tech hub of Canada…

Montreal is so late to the electric bus game it’s not even funny. We have 100% renewable power here in Québec, locally produced and damn cheap. Makes zero sense not to do this, I’m just astonished at the lack of political will that led to the snail pace of this transition. To add insult to injury, we have an electric bus manufacturer in Quebec just north of Montreal that has been shipping fully electric school buses to California in the hundreds per year and we’re still buying BRAND NEW DIESEL school buses !!!!!!!!
Every single bus in Montreal SHOULD ALREADY BE ELECTRIC. Instead we have a pilot project followed by a measely 30 electric buses? Total lack of leadership. Truly pathetic.

“Montreal is so late to the electric bus game it’s not even funny.”

You say that like every city in Canada has already gone electric.

Yes, we are late, because we don’t measure ourself only by another feat.

Having everything in favor and doing so little is not very enthusiastic leadership, that’s what he meant.
I agree!

Small step is something that is praised against doing nothing, but when you need to jump over a cliff, small steps ain’t gone do it!

The metrics in Québec are WAY better than any other province in Canada, with extremely expensive gas and diesel prices and very cheap 100% renewable power, that’s why the snail pace of electrification is pathetic and makes zero sense, both from an environmental standpoint as well as an economic one. We should be leading California, not the other way around. Instead we’re shipping hundreds of electric Québec-made school buses to California while we purchase diesel buses here. It’s retarded.

These electric buses are nice ambassadors for EVs in general. The first EV that many people will ride in is an EV bus. Their smooth, completely quiet, non vibrating, and zero toxic emission spewing advantages will be noticed by riders.

I hope various airport ground transport systems adopt EV buses since that will get rich people (that can afford the current EV cars) into their first EV rides.

“New Flyer bid successfully against two competitors” — at a guess, BYD and Proterra?…

466 kWh is seriously big. I think it might be the most any bus maker currently offers. Perhaps even the most of any currently available road vehicle?

Proterra website indicates that their E2 classification bus is available with from 440 to 660 kWh.

Yeah, I’ve seen the 660 kWh claim before; I was unsure though whether they actually offer them as a regular option… I wonder, has anyone ordered that variant yet?

Good Question. I know that Edmonton and Toronto have ordered some variant of the Proterra E2, but I don’t know how much battery they ordered. I believe Foothill Transit in SoCal was the first to deploy Proterra long range buses.

I’ve lived in Montreal through multiple winters and I’d be interested to know how they plan to cope with the heating needs in the winter. When it’s -30°C there’s not much heat for a heat pump to pump, and a bus that size can easily take 15-20 kW to heat. If you’re just taking that energy out of the battery and burning it, you’re going to need some kind of opportunity charging during the day to get through your shift. I know some buses use a Diesel or ethanol heater, maybe there’s something similar going on here? Or maybe some kind of latent heat storage device ( )?

Daimler dwelt on this quite a bit in the press blast for their electric bus; so clearly it’s a serious concern — but apparently they believe they are on top of it…

With a 440kwh to 660kwh battery pack that’s a non-issue. Most public transit bus routes are less than 20km, meaning that the bus could run the entire shift with battery to spare before heading to depot for recharging. Ethanol or biodiesel heater can be added for buses on REALLY long routes, but we should start at least with electrification of the short and medium bus routes (which we are nowhere near having done yet), by the time we do that there will be further advancements in battery technology, so again, a total non-issue IMHO.

where are these buses are made ? Canada is it any one know here

New Flyer builds in Winnipeg but I believe some of their buses for the Canadian market also come from plants in Minnesota.

Is this the same design as the one that tipped over because its so top heavy?