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Proterra Sells Seven Battery-Electric Transit Buses to Nashville MTA

February 26, 2014

The Tennessee capital continues the trend of cities adding electric buses to their fleets

GREENVILLE, S.C., February 26, 2014 – Proterra Inc, the leading provider of zero-emission battery electric transit solutions, recently announced the sale of seven buses and an electric charging station to Nashville Metropolitan Transit Authority (Nashville MTA).  The buses are slated to be built at Proterra’s manufacturing facility in Greenville, S.C. and delivered to Nashville this year.

The funds for the zero-emission electric buses and the electric charging station are the result of Nashville MTA’s successful application for a federal Clean Fuels grant and local matching funds from the city.  The Proterra buses will serve the free downtown Music City Circuit, which is designed to help residents and visitors reach sports and entertainment venues, downtown hotels, residences and offices more quickly and easily.

“We are committed to investing in transit improvements that better our community by reducing harmful emissions and improving fuel economy,” said Paul J. Ballard, CEO of Nashville MTA and the Regional Transportation Authority of Middle Tennessee (RTA). “By incorporating the Proterra buses into our fleet, we are moving in the right direction to ensure Nashville MTA’s transit services benefit the environment for years to come.”

With this purchase, Nashville becomes the latest city to reduce operating costs, decrease emissions and improve the area’s quality of life through the purchase of zero emissions transit buses.  Proterra was selected through a competitive procurement process, which included bids from Wave, New Flyer, EV America and BYD.

“We are extremely pleased that Nashville MTA has selected Proterra as their provider of electric transit solutions,” said Garrett Mikita, President and Chief Executive Officer, Proterra Inc.  “Our company has proven our ability to provide long-term cost savings and improve an authority’s dependence on fossil fuels, as evidenced by our growing list of customers.”

About Nashville MTA

The Nashville MTA operates bus and van services in Metro Nashville/Davidson County. With 46 bus routes and its AccessRide vans, the transit system is connected to all major corridors, many businesses, and tourist attractions. Last fiscal year, for the second year in a row, the Nashville MTA and RTA recorded more than 10 million passenger trips in the Middle Tennessee area. Nashville MTA’s management team also manages the regional transit services for the RTA. For more information, visit www.nashvillemta.org.

About Proterra

Proterra is a leader in the design and manufacture of clean technology and clean energy, providing zero emission vehicles that enable bus fleet operators to significantly reduce operating cost while delivering clean, quiet power to the community.  The EcoRide™ is the world’s first battery electric bus with fast charge enabled infinite range.  With unmatched durability and energy efficiency based on rigorous industry testing at Altoona, the Proterra product is proudly made in America and based in Greenville, SC.   For more information about Proterra, please visit www.proterra.com.

                                                                                     

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Electric Bus Co. Proterra Names Former DOT Secretary Ray LaHood to Board

February 19, 2014

Yuliya Chernova

February 18, 2014

 

Former U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood joined the board of directors of Proterra Inc., an electric bus company whose business is tightly woven with government policy. "Transit policy will help determine Proterra's future," said Mr. LaHood. He served as secretary of transportation from 2009 until July of last year. Prior to that, he was a U.S. congressman representing the 18th District of Illinois.

Greenville, S.C.-based Proterra has secured numerous orders with municipalities to deliver electric buses. Last year the company shipped 23 all-electric buses, up from eight the previous year. Part of the funding that some of its municipal customers used to buy the buses came from the federal government. Mr. LaHood was at the helm of the department when the Federal Transit Administration issued funds that went for the purchase of Proterra buses via the Clean Fuels Program.

"The government has a role to play in encouraging and offering incentives by way of grants or loans to encourage these companies to think outside the box about clean-burning vehicles," he said.

Mr. LaHood's expertise might help Proterra navigate the lobbying circuit, including facing the natural gas lobby, since the startup competes with makers of buses that run on natural gas.

Department of Energy and Department of Transportation, "I think those are the two important departments that Proterra has to stay close to," Mr. LaHood said.

Proterra raised about $34 million from Tao Invest, an investment vehicle of Nick and Joby Prtizker; Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers ; General Motors Corp .'s GM Ventures; Mitsui & Co .; Vision Ridge Partners ; Hennessey Capital and 88 Green, as well as Edison Energy Inc., and Constellation, a subsidiary of Exelon Corp .

 

http:/ www.proterra.inc .

Write to Yuliya Chernova at yuliya.chernova@wsj.com. Follow her on Twitter at @ychernova.

Former Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood to Join Proterra Board of Directors

February 18, 2014

GREENVILLE, S.C., February 13, 2014 – Proterra Inc., the leading provider of the most cost effective zero emission battery electric bus, is pleased to announce that former Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood will join the company’s Board of Directors effective immediately.

LaHood’s government experience and leadership in transportation policy innovation make him an excellent fit for Proterra.  Prior to serving as Secretary of Transportation, he served on the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee for six years and on the House Appropriations Committee for nearly eight years, giving him strong knowledge of the transportation sector and of the funding issues at play in the industry. During his time as Secretary, LaHood was an avid supporter of EV transit, leading the Federal Transit Administration’s Clean Fuels Program, which was used to help fund the purchase of EV buses by several cities across the country.  He also visited Proterra in early 2011, calling the bus company “a model for the rest of the country.”

“I believe in the need for dependable, lower cost, more sustainable transit options,” said LaHood. “EV is the future of transit, and I am pleased to lend my knowledge and support to building this future with Proterra – the clear industry leader and the only American EV bus manufacturer.”

 “We are incredibly fortunate to work with an expert like Secretary LaHood, who can offer insight into so many of the key issues facing our industry,” said Garrett Mikita, president and chief executive officer, Proterra Inc. “He is a true and long-standing supporter of cost effective and sustainable transportation and an advocate of both transit agencies and manufacturers.  We look forward to having the benefit of his wisdom and counsel as we work to advance the American transportation system and enable better solutions for taxpayers in transit.”

About Proterra

Proterra is a leader in the design and manufacture of clean technology and clean energy, providing zero emission vehicles that enable bus fleet operators to significantly reduce operating cost while delivering clean, quiet power to the community. The EcoRide™ is the world’s first battery electric bus with fast charge enabled infinite range. With unmatched durability and energy efficiency based on rigorous industry testing at Altoona, the Proterra product is proudly made in America and based in Greenville, SC.  For more information about Proterra, please visit www.proterra.com.

Proterra Delivers Three Additional EcoRide Battery-Electric Transit Buses to WRTA

January 24, 2014

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    Proterra Inc.

    The Worcester Regional Transit Authority has purchased three Proterra buses, which makes 13 percent of its entire fleet pure-electric, which is the most in North America.

  • The Worcester Regional Transit Authority (WRTA) has purchased three additional zero-emission all-electric transit buses from Proterra Inc.

    This purchase increases the WRTA’s electric fleet to six buses - 13 percent of its entire fleet. The buses are set to go into service this month, giving WRTA the largest fleet of electric buses in revenue service in North America.


    The WRTA made its initial purchase from Proterra in September 2012, using funds from a $4.4 million Federal Transit Administration Clean Fuels grant to replace three of its twelve old diesel buses. These three electric buses went into service in late summer on routes between Union Station and The Shoppes at Blackstone Valley and Quinsigamond Community College

    “Repeat customers represent the ultimate customer service goal for our company,” said Garrett Mikita, president and CEO, Proterra Inc. “Our continuing partnership with WRTA emphasizes the long-term financial benefits of reducing an authority’s dependence on fossil fuels and the positive impact battery-electric buses can have on the environment.”

    Proterra’s EcoRide BE35 battery-electric buses recharge in less than 10 minutes. The buses are made of lightweight composite materials and are powered with state-of-the-art battery technology. As a result, the buses have zero emissions, run virtually silent and are 500 percent more fuel efficient than diesel buses.

    “The WRTA is committed to promoting resource conservation by purchasing environmentally friendly products,” said WRTA administrator Stephen O’Neil. “Proterra’s all-electric buses run quieter, cleaner and more efficiently than older model diesel buses and reduce our carbon footprint — while maintaining a high level of efficiency and customer satisfaction.”

  • Original Story:  http://www.masstransitmag.com/press_release/11298294/ma-proterra-delivers-three-additional-ecoride-zero-emission-battery-electric-transit-buses-to-worcester-regional-transit-authority

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Mass. agency adds 3 more Proterra buses

January 24, 2014

Mass.-based Worcester Regional Transit Authority (WRTA) purchased three additional zero-emission all-electric transit buses from Proterra Inc.

 

The purchase increases the WRTA’s electric fleet to six buses — 13% of its entire fleet. The buses are set to go into service this month, giving WRTA the largest fleet of electric buses in revenue service in North America.

The WRTA made its initial purchase from Proterra in September 2012, using funds from a $4.4 million Federal Transit Authority Clean Fuels grant to replace three of its 12 old diesel buses. The three electric buses went into service in late summer.

“Repeat customers represent the ultimate customer service goal for our company,” said Garrett Mikita, Proterra’s president/CEO. “Our continuing partnership with WRTA emphasizes the long-term financial benefits of reducing an authority’s dependence on fossil fuels and the positive impact battery-electric buses can have on the environment.”

Proterra’s EcoRide BE35 battery-electric buses recharge in less than 10 minutes. The buses are made of lightweight composite materials and are powered with state-of-the-art battery technology. As a result, the buses have zero emissions, run virtually silent and are 500% more fuel efficient than diesel buses.

Original Story:  http://www.metro-magazine.com/news/story/2014/01/mass-agency-adds-3-more-proterra-buses.aspx

Proterra Delivers Three Additional EcoRide Battery-Electric Buses to WRTA

January 22, 2014

Proterra Delivers Three Additional EcoRide™ Zero-Emission Battery-Electric Transit Buses to Worcester Regional Transit Authority
Incremental purchase will give WRTA the largest fleet of electric buses in revenue service in North America

GREENVILLE, S.C., Jan. 22, 2014 – The Worcester (Mass.) Regional Transit Authority (WRTA) has purchased three additional zero-emission all-electric transit buses from Proterra Inc, the leading provider of zero-emission commercial transit solutions. This purchase increases the WRTA’s electric fleet to six buses - 13 percent of its entire fleet. The buses are set to go into service this month, giving WRTA the largest fleet of electric buses in revenue service in North America.

The WRTA made its initial purchase from Proterra in September 2012, using funds from a $4.4 million Federal Transit Authority Clean Fuels grant to replace three of its twelve old diesel buses. These three electric buses went into service in late summer on routes between Union Station and The Shoppes at Blackstone Valley and Quinsigamond Community College.  

“Repeat customers represent the ultimate customer service goal for our company,” said Garrett Mikita, president and chief executive officer, Proterra Inc. “Our continuing partnership with WRTA emphasizes the long-term financial benefits of reducing an authority’s dependence on fossil fuels and the positive impact battery-electric buses can have on the environment.”

Proterra’s EcoRide™ BE35 battery-electric buses recharge in less than 10 minutes, ready to serve the community with clean electric powered bus service. The buses are made of lightweight composite materials and are powered with state-of-the-art battery technology. As a result, the buses have zero emissions, run virtually silent and are 500 percent more fuel efficient than diesel buses.

“The WRTA is committed to promoting resource conservation by purchasing environmentally friendly products,” said WRTA administrator Stephen O’Neil. “Proterra’s all-electric buses run quieter, cleaner and more efficiently than older model diesel buses and reduce our carbon footprint—while maintaining a high level of efficiency and customer satisfaction.”

About WRTA
WRTA is the second largest regional transit authority in Massachusetts and services the City of Worcester and the surrounding 36 communities in the Central Massachusetts area.

About Proterra
Proterra is a leader in the design and manufacture of clean technology and clean energy, providing zero emission vehicles that enable bus fleet operators to significantly reduce operating cost while delivering clean, quiet power to the community. The EcoRide™ is the world’s first battery electric bus with fast charge enabled infinite range. With unmatched durability and energy efficiency based on rigorous industry testing at Altoona, the Proterra product is proudly made in America and based in Greenville, SC. For more information about Proterra, please visit www.proterra.com.

                                                                                     

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Proterra Closes Second Round of Series C Investment on Strong Sales Performance, Industry Leadership

January 08, 2014

More than $34 Million Raised in Series C to Date

GREENVILLE, S.C., January 8, 2014 – Proterra Inc., manufacturer of the most cost-effective zero emission battery electric buses on the market today, has closed round two of its Series C funding. More than $10 million was raised in this second round, bringing total Series C funding to date to more than $34 million.  Funding was based in large measure on the company’s strong 2013 performance and aggressive sales. 

The second round of Series C investment was led by Nick and Joby Pritzker through their family’s firm, Tao Invest, and selected existing shareholders. Previous investors include electric industry leaders Edison Energy, Inc. and Constellation, along with Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, GM Ventures, Mitsui & Co. Global Investment, Inc., Vision Ridge Partners, Hennessey Capital and 88 Green Ventures.

Proterra expects to close Series C funding before the end of Q1 2014.                                                

“There is no doubt that cities and campuses alike are choosing to explore and invest in more energy-efficient clean transit options to help reduce costs, meet environmental mandates and improve quality of life,” said Nick Pritzker.  “With the growing trend toward re-urbanization, demand will only continue to grow. We chose to invest in Proterra based on its clear leadership in this burgeoning market.”

Proterra is the manufacturer of the only battery-electric buses purchased for revenue service anywhere in North America.  Its BE35 is the only electric transit bus to ever pass stringent federally-required Altoona testing.  The company has recently announced a host of new sales, including several from repeat customers. Proterra will use these additional Series C proceeds to continue to fund production growth and product development efforts to keep pace with accelerating demand.

“Thanks in large measure to our unparalleled technology and unwavering commitment to providing superior service, as well as the vision and advice of our investors, like the Pritzkers, Proterra is riding a wave of success right now,” noted Proterra Chief Executive Officer Garrett Mikita. “We are closing sales, delivering buses and earning repeat business from satisfied customers at an incredibly rapid pace, and we only expect that to continue as more of our early adopters become evangelists for the value proposition presented by our fast-charge, lightweight EV buses.”

 

About Proterra

Proterra is a leader in the design and manufacture of clean technology and clean energy, providing zero emission vehicles that enable bus fleet operators to significantly reduce operating cost while delivering clean, quiet power to the community. The EcoRide™ is the world’s first battery electric bus with fast charge enabled infinite range. With unmatched durability and energy efficiency based on rigorous industry testing at Altoona, the Proterra product is proudly made in America and based in Greenville, SC.  For more information about Proterra, please visit www.proterra.com.                                                                       

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Massachusetts Leading the Way on Electric Vehicle Transit

December 13, 2013

Dec 12, 2013 by   | Bio |  Leave a Comment

WRTA

One of the six WRTA buses that comprise the largest fleet of EV buses in the Northeast.
Photo credit: CMRPC

The Worcester Regional Transit Authority (WRTA) is about to make Massachusetts a national leader in electric vehicle, or “EV”, transit. The WRTA has just purchased three additional electric buses, which will join the existing bus fleet of 46. This includes ten hybrid buses (diesel-electric) as well as three existing electric buses. With a grand total of 6 EV buses, the WRTA will operate the largest electric bus fleet in the Northeast.

According to Stephen O’Neil, Administrator at the WRTA, the motivation to implement an electric fleet of public transit buses began with the practical consideration of rising fuel costs.  The promise of cost-effective electric technology and a desire to be less dependent on fossil-fuels inspired the WRTA to apply for a Federal Transit Authority Clean Fuels grant.  With a grant of $4.5 million awarded in 2012, the WRTA purchased three electric buses and fast-charging equipment.  The grant was the second largest awarded in 2012 for electric vehicles (EV) and equipment.

Electric vehicles are known for being quiet, clean, and efficient alternatives to traditional internal combustion vehicles fueled by diesel or gasoline.  Here are some anticipated benefits of EV technology:

  • EV buses emit 280,200 pounds less CO2 each year than a bus operating on diesel, and 316,000 pounds less CO2 each year than a bus operating on compressed natural gas (CNG),
  • EV buses are ultra-quiet at 60 decibels – about half the level of noise produced by a typical bus.
  • An EV battery will only need to be replaced every 7-8 years.
  • EV buses rely on fewer parts and equipment than what is needed to maintain diesel-powered motors; one vehicle is expected to save about $135,000 in maintenance costs alone over the lifetime of each bus.

The new EV buses are expected to save on the cost of diesel fuel without disruption to the transit schedule. A standard 18-ton EV bus will charge completely in ten minutes.  Only five to six minutes are necessary to get the battery to a “sweet-spot” (between 20-80% of full charge). This level of charge is adequate for EV buses to run about 22-30 miles and still adhere to their schedule. Aside from some initial charging hiccups associated with bus alignment at charging stations, the electric fleet is ready for service.

The WRTA strategically selected optimal EV routes after a comprehensive analysis of local topography. In keeping with certain considerations, such as the lack of charging stations farther out in the suburbs, as well as the fact that travel on an incline uses up more battery, the EV fleet will operate on a relatively flat route within an hour of a charging station at all times. Additionally, the WRTA is working to anticipate and prepare for any concerns related to the oncoming cold weather.

Additionally, the WRTA is working to anticipate and prepare for any concerns related to the oncoming cold weather. The WRTA anticipates having accumulated enough data by spring to determine whether the EV fleet indeed will stand up against Massachusetts winter storms and temperatures as expected. Once the WRTA supplies the figures to underscore a truly efficient, cost-effective EV fleet, other state and regional transit authorities will hopefully hop aboard the EV bandwagon. Until then, the WRTA and Massachusetts zoom ahead of the pack as the Northeast’s EV-transit front-runner.

Link to original story: http://www.clf.org/blog/massachusetts/massachusetts-leading-way-electric-vehicle-transit/

Proterra Named to Global Cleantech 100

December 11, 2013

GREENVILLE, S.C., December 11, 2013 – Proterra Inc., the leading provider of zero-emission battery electric transit solutions, was recently named to the Global Cleantech 100 list, which highlights the promise of private clean technology companies from around the world. Proterra is the only bus manufacturer to make the 2013 list.

“Being named to the Global Cleantech 100 is indicative of Proterra’s commitment to innovative, clean technology,” said Garrett Mikita, president and chief executive officer, Proterra Inc. “We are honored to be considered among the companies the industry believes will make the most significant market impact over the next 10 years.”

Proterra is currently the only battery-electric bus in revenue service anywhere in the United States, with operations in 7 cities. Additionally, Proterra has recently announced several new sales, with three recent orders to transit systems coming from repeat customers—a major vote of confidence in the company’s technology and the buses’ performance.

“As the only bus manufacturer on this prestigious list, Proterra demonstrates its leadership in the clean transportation space,” Rajiv Ghatalia, President of Hennessey Capital Management LLC, a leading venture capital firm and Proterra investor. “They are changing the mass transit industry—helping agencies address pressing transportation, environmental and financial challenges with zero-emission commercial transit solutions.”

Cleantech Group, presenters of the award, defines cleantech as “products, services and processes that are inherently designed to provide superior performance at lower costs, greatly reduce or eliminate negative ecological impact and improve the productive and responsible use of natural resources.”

Any company that is not listed on any major stock exchange, or is not a majority-owned subsidiary of another company, can qualify for the list, which now in its fifth year. The 100 honorees were narrowed down from 5,864 companies by an expert panel of 90 investors and corporations with consideration to innovation, market and ability to execute.

About Proterra

Proterra is a leader in the design and manufacture of clean technology and clean energy, providing zero emission vehicles that enable bus fleet operators to significantly reduce operating cost while delivering clean, quiet power to the community. The EcoRide™ is the world’s first battery electric bus with fast charge enabled infinite range. With unmatched durability and energy efficiency based on rigorous industry testing at Altoona, the Proterra product is proudly made in America and based in Greenville, SC.  For more information about Proterra, please visit www.proterra.com.

 About Cleantech Group                                                                                             

Cleantech Group helps clients accelerate sustainable innovation. The company’s i3 platform allows subscribers to discover companies and explore cleantech trends strategically with proprietary real-time data. Cleantech Forums bring together thought leaders and innovators in the cleantech and sustainability ecosystem. The company’s advisory services leverage expertise in designing and executing corporate strategies for sustainable growth and innovation sourcing. Details at www.cleantech.com

                                                                                     

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Ky.‘s TARC orders 10 Proterra all-electric buses

December 03, 2013

Proterra Inc. announced the sales of 10 buses and two charging stations to the Transit Authority of River City (TARC) in Louisville, Ky.

 

The buses are slated to be built at Proterra’s manufacturing facility in Greenville, S.C. in early 2014, with delivery expected later in the year.

TARC’s current fleet of more than 220 buses and trolleys runs 41 routes in five counties in Kentucky and southern Indiana with 15 million customers annually. The new Proterra buses will replace the agency’s Toonerville II Trolleys, which operate free of charge in downtown Louisville’s business district.

“We’re excited about adding the Proterra buses to our fleet and look forward to the benefits — cleaner air, a quieter ride in a sleek, modern vehicle, and fuel and maintenance cost savings, “ said J. Barry Barker, executive director of TARC. “Proterra’s American-made buses have been tested against stringent industry standards and are in operation by other transit agencies.”

Proterra has recently announced several new sales, with the company’s last three orders to transit systems coming from repeat customers — a major vote of confidence in the company’s technology and the buses’ performance, according to the company.


Link to original story: http://www.metro-magazine.com/news/story/2013/12/ky-s-tarc-orders-10-proterra-all-electric-buses.aspx

Proterra Sells Ten Battery-Electric Transit Buses to TARC

December 03, 2013

Louisville joins the rapidly growing roster of cities electrifying their fleets

GREENVILLE, S.C., December 3, 2013 – Proterra Inc., the leading provider of zero-emission battery electric transit solutions, recently announced the sales of 10 buses and 2 charging stations to The Transit Authority of River City (TARC) in Louisville, Ky.  The buses are slated to be built at Proterra’s manufacturing facility in Greenville, S.C. in early 2014, with delivery expected later in the year.

TARC’s current fleet of more than 220 buses and trolleys runs 41 routes in five counties in Kentucky and southern Indiana with 15 million customers annually.  The new Proterra buses will replace the agency’s Toonerville II Trolleys, which operate free of charge in downtown Louisville’s business district.

“We’re excited about adding the Proterra buses to our fleet and look forward to the benefits – cleaner air, a quieter ride in a sleek, modern vehicle, and fuel and maintenance cost savings, “ said J. Barry Barker, Executive Director of TARC. “Proterra’s American-made buses have been tested against stringent industry standards and are in operation by other transit agencies.”

With this purchase, Louisville becomes the next in a growing roster of cities who, based on the desire to reduce operating costs, decrease emissions and improve quality of life in the areas they serve, have actively sought out Proterra electric buses. 

Proterra has recently announced several new sales, with the company’s last three orders to transit systems coming from repeat customers – a major vote of confidence in the company’s technology and the buses’ performance.

 “The market is really starting to embrace the idea that electric buses just make sense” said Garrett Mikita, president and chief executive officer, Proterra Inc.  “It’s hard to argue with proven cost savings, more predictable fuel expenses and the improved reliability, and while we are thrilled to see forward-thinking cities like Louisville embrace this game-changing technology, we know that we have only scratched the surface of this market.”

 

About TARC

The Transit Authority of River City (TARC) provides public transportation in the Greater Louisville area with bus routes in Jefferson, Bullitt, and Oldham counties in Ky. and Clark and Floyd counties in Ind.  The agency’s mission is to explore and implement transportation opportunities that enhance the social, economic and environmental well-being of the community.

About Proterra

Proterra is a leader in the design and manufacture of clean technology and clean energy, providing zero emission vehicles that enable bus fleet operators to significantly reduce operating cost while delivering clean, quiet power to the community.  The EcoRide™ is the world’s first battery electric bus with fast charge enabled infinite range.  With unmatched durability and energy efficiency based on rigorous industry testing at Altoona, the Proterra product is proudly made in America and based in Greenville, SC.   For more information about Proterra, please visit www.proterra.com.                                                                                     

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Proterra Announces New CFO and Vice President of Sales

November 19, 2013

For Immediate Release

Agency contact:
JoAnne Laffey Abed, public relations manager
Jackson Marketing Group for Proterra
864.272.3014 or joanne.abed@jacksonmg.com
 

GREENVILLE, S.C., November 19, 2013 – Proterra Inc., the leading provider of zero-emission battery-electric transit solutions,  has recently announced the addition of Dave Rich as chief financial officer and Bill Fay as vice president of sales.  These hires come to Proterra with a wealth of automotive and transportation industry expertise and will play a critical role in Proterra’s growth plans.

Dave Rich brings 23 years of financial and business leadership experience, including 19 years in progressively responsible roles within Ford Motor Company, in the areas of corporate business development, corporate capital investment and automotive cash. Most recently, he served as chief financial officer at Toyota Boshoku America, where he oversaw several acquisitions and helped to significantly increase profitability.  He holds a Master of Science and a Bachelor of Science degree in finance from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Bill Fay comes to Proterra with more than 20 years of industry experience and a proven track record of developing, implementing and executing go-to-market strategies.  He most recently worked for Clever Devices as vice president and managing director of North Carolina operations, where he led the Clever Care sales and service organization along with all OEM relationships.  Before Clever Devices, he held senior management positions with Digital Recorders, TwinVision, ElDorado National Bus Company, and Blue Bird.  Bill received his bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Lowell in Lowell, Massachusetts.

“Well-run sales and finance functions are critical to the success of any organization, but they are even more important to Proterra at this stage of our development,” said Garrett Mikita, president and chief executive officer, Proterra Inc. “Proterra has enjoyed significant expansion over the past several years, and we have found professionals who are committed to creating the culture, processes and results necessary to sustain and augment this growth. We are confident that Dave and Bill, with their depth of experience and strong skill sets, are the best candidates to lead these areas as we continue to drive growth.”

About Proterra

Proterra is a leader in the design and manufacture of clean technology and clean energy, providing zero emissions vehicles that enable bus fleet operators to significantly reduce operating cost while deliveringclean, quiet power to the community.  The EcoRide™ is the world’s first battery electric bus with fast charge enabled infinite range.  With unmatched durability and energy efficiency based on rigorous industry testing at Altoona, the Proterra product is proudly made in America and based in Greenville, S.C.   For more information about Proterra, please visit www.proterra.com.

                                                                                     

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Proterra Ranked in The Global Cleantech 100

November 07, 2013

Foreword from Cleantech Group’s CEO 
 
For the fifth year running, Cleantech Group is proud to present the annual Global Cleantech 100 list, our method of taking a reading on the global innovation community’s shifting views on which companies—and which types of companies—are most likely to have big commercial impact in a 5-10 year timeframe. 
 
This research fits neatly and squarely within our mission to help corporations, investors, financiers, professional service firms, and governmental agencies connect with global cleantech innovation. Congratulations to those who made the 2013 list, we look forward to following the progress of your company. 
 
Sheeraz Haji
CEO, Cleantech Group
 
 

Utilities Back Electric Bus Company Proterra, Valuing It Close to $200M

October 16, 2013

Utilities Back Electric Bus Company Proterra, Valuing It Close to $200M

Yuliya Chernova
October 15, 2013
(c) 2013 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.

Electric bus company Proterra Inc . has secured a $24 million round of funding from two utilities and a slew of existing venture backers to help the company navigate a competitive market and win contracts with cities.

The company will sell about 40 buses this year and anticipates doubling that next year, said Garrett Mikita , chief executive of the startup. The Greenville, S.C.-based company has about 300 employees, having added about a hundred in the past five months, he said.

Its new investors are Edison Energy, Inc., a subsidiary of Edison International , and Constellation, a subsidiary of Exelon Corp .

The round places the valuation of the company at close to $200 million, according to Mr. Mikita. Returning investors were Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers , General Motors Corp .'s GM Ventures, Mitsui & Co., Vision Ridge Partners , Hennessey Capital and 88 Green.

Proterra will likely add another $5 million to $15 million when it anticipates closing the Series C round later this year, Mr. Mikita said.

Although utilities are not directly involved in Proterra's business, there is an important connection--Proterra's buses run on electricity, and its customers, primarily municipal governments, pay for the electricity and calculate expected electric costs when making a purchase of the buses.

Some municipalities, said Mr. Mikita, are approaching their utilities to negotiate lower rates in view of electric-bus purchases. It's helpful, said the CEO, to have the input of some of the largest electric utilities in the country in figuring out how to best approach power providers in such discussions.

Proterra estimates that per mile its fuel costs are about 19 cents per mile versus $1.03 with diesel or 73 cents with compressed natural gas, which represent the main options for municipalities.

Municipalities that buy Proterra's buses can often qualify for an 80% subsidy from the federal government, because its buses meet certain provisions related to domestic manufacturing, as well as performance testing, Mr. Mikita said.

Proterra previously raised a $23 million Series B round less than a year ago.

http://www.proterra.com
Write to Yuliya Chernova at yuliya.chernova@wsj.com. Follow her on Twitter at @ychernova

Proterra Closes More Than $24M in Series C Investment on Accelerating Sales Growth

October 15, 2013

GREENVILLE, S.C., October 15, 2013 – Proterra Inc., the leading provider of the most cost effective zero emission battery electric bus, has closed more than $24 million in Series C financing round amid rising demand for its transit solutions. Support for this round of funding was bolstered by Proterra’s projected 225 percent revenue growth for the close of 2013.

This round of funding included two new strategic electric industry investors, Edison Energy, Inc., a subsidiary of Edison International and Constellation. Edison and Constellation join Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, GM Ventures, Mitsui & Co. Global Investment, Inc., Vision Ridge Partners, Hennessey Capital and 88 Green Ventures to complete the round.  In conjunction with the investment closing, Bert Valdman, President of Edison Energy, and Michael Smith, Vice President and Head of Technology Ventures for Constellation will serve as observers to Proterra’s Board. 

“Constellation’s decision to invest in Proterra is based on the company’s clear leadership position in the rapidly expanding international electric vehicle (EV) market,” said Smith. “We are pleased with Proterra’s growth and believe that further market expansion will continue based on Proterra’s ability to simultaneously address pressing transportation, environmental and financial challenges for a wide range of metropolitan areas and commercial transportation users in the U.S. and abroad.”

The addition of these new electric industry funding partners is a critical development for Proterra, which is actively working with utility companies to develop strategies to optimize EV buses to leverage grid power distribution and ensure low cost energy alternatives. Proterra’s investors already include many top sustainable technology funding companies and automotive manufacturers, giving the company a competitive edge in terms of expertise and intellectual capital.

“One of Edison Energy’s core strategies is investing in the electrification of transportation, and Proterra is an emerging leader in the field” said Bert Valdman, president of Edison Energy and senior vice president of strategic planning for Edison International. “We are pleased to partner with Proterra, a company leading the charge in bringing safe, reliable, electric-drive transit buses to market.”

Proterra will use Series C proceeds to fund production growth and product development efforts to keep pace with booming demand.

 “The benefits of EV mass transit are compelling to a wide range of audiences,” said Garrett Mikita, chief executive officer, Proterra Inc. “It offers significant cost savings to transit agencies; drastically reduces fuel consumption, air and noise pollution; and improves the quality of life of the communities it serves. This round of funding is not only an acknowledgement of the strength of the company and the industry, but of Proterra’s commitment to leadership and working with all key stakeholders, including the power supply industry, to create the most effective and efficient transit solutions on the market.”

About Constellation

The Constellation family of retail electricity and natural gas suppliers (www.constellation.com), are subsidiaries of Exelon Corp., and are leading competitive retail suppliers of power, natural gas and energy products and services for homes and businesses across the continental United States. Constellation’s retail businesses serve more than 100,000 business and public sector customers, including more than two-thirds of the Fortune 100, and nearly one million residential customers.

Exelon Corporation (NYSE: EXC) is the nation’s leading competitive energy provider, with 2012 revenues of approximately $23.5 billion. Headquartered in Chicago, Exelon has operations and business activities in 47 states, the District of Columbia and Canada. Exelon is one of the largest competitive U.S. power generators, with approximately 35,000 megawatts of owned capacity comprising one of the nation’s cleanest and lowest-cost power generation fleets.

About Edison Energy

Edison Energy, a subsidiary of Edison International, is focused on providing energy services to industrial and commercial customers across the nation. Edison Energy is identifying opportunities that capitalize on industry change and leverage the company’s core strengths. Prime areas of interest are distributed generation, electrification of transportation, water purification and power management services to the commercial and industrial sectors.

Edison International, through its subsidiaries, is a generator and distributor of electric power and an investor in infrastructure and energy assets, including renewable energy. Headquartered in Rosemead, Calif., Edison International is the parent company of Southern California Edison, one of the nation’s largest electric utilities.

About Proterra

Proterra is a leader in the design and manufacture of clean technology and clean energy, providing zero emission vehicles that enable bus fleet operators to significantly reduce operating cost while delivering clean, quiet power to the community.  The EcoRide™ is the world’s first battery electric bus with fast charge enabled infinite range.  With unmatched durability and energy efficiency based on rigorous industry testing at Altoona, the Proterra product is proudly made in America and based in Greenville, SC.   For more information about Proterra, please visit www.proterra.com.

                                                                                     

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Largest-Ever U.S. Order of Altoona-Tested Electric Buses

September 05, 2013

GREENVILLE, S.C., September 5, 2013 – Proterra Inc., the leading provider of zero-emission battery electric transit solutions, has completed the largest-ever U.S. sale of Altoona-tested heavy-duty electric buses to Foothill Transit, a joint powers authority of 22 member cities in the San Gabriel and Pomona Valleys in Southern California. In 2011, Foothill Transit became the first transit agency in the United States to use on-route charge electric buses by purchasing and operating Proterra buses. Based on strong performance and return on investment of those vehicles, the agency has decided to purchase an additional 12 buses from Proterra to completely electrify its 291 route, which travels between LaVerne and Pomona.

Although popular throughout the United States for reduced cost of ownership and sustainability, zero-emission electric buses are of particular interest in California, where there are many environmental non-attainment zones and California Air Resource Board (CARB) regulations in play.

“The Foothill Transit order is a clear vote of confidence and confirmation that Proterra buses truly deliver the lowest total cost of ownership and smallest carbon footprint of any transit bus on the market,” said Garrett Mikita, president and chief executive officer, Proterra Inc.  “Foothill Transit was our first customer and the first U.S. transit agency to go electric with on-route charging, so we are thrilled that they have seen the value of expanding their electric fleet and will use Proterra buses to do so.”

The Foothill Transit sale is the latest in a wave of new orders for Proterra, with the company’s last three sales to transit systems coming from repeat customers.  Recently, StarMetro of Tallahassee purchased an additional three EV buses from Proterra, increasing their EV fleet size to five, and the Worcester Regional Transit Authority in Massachusetts doubled its initial three bus order to six.

“We had high hopes when we first made the decision to use these innovative fast-charge EV buses,” said Foothill Transit executive director, Doran Barnes. “These electric buses have more than delivered on our expectations in terms of cost savings and sustainability.  We're looking forward to launching our—and our region's—first all-electric bus line.  This is the future of zero-emission buses, and we're proud to be on board.”

To keep pace with this growing demand, Proterra has doubled its production workforce, installed a second production line, added a second shift and grown its sales staff significantly.

About Foothill Transit
Foothill Transit is entering its 25th year of serving the San Gabriel and Pomona Valleys in Los Angeles County. Its 314-bus fleet covers over 300 square miles each year, carrying 14 million passengers. For more information, visit www.foothilltransit.org.

About Proterra

Proterra is a leader in the design and manufacture of clean technology and clean energy, providing zero emission vehicles that enable bus fleet operators to significantly reduce operating cost while delivering clean, quiet power to the community.  The EcoRide™ is the world’s first battery electric bus with fast charge enabled infinite range.  With unmatched durability and energy efficiency based on rigorous industry testing at Altoona, the Proterra product is proudly made in America and based in Greenville, SC.   For more information about Proterra, please visit www.proterra.com.

                                                                                     

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SC: Proterra Announces Significant Expansion

August 16, 2013

Proterra Inc. announced Aug. 16 that it has more than doubled in size in the past nine months, adding a second production line and shift and increasing its number of employees by more than 50 percent. The company attributes this rapid growth to strong interest in lower total cost of ownership clean energy transit options.

The electric bus manufacturer has also made significant infrastructure investments in the past year to prepare for planned future growth and to expand beyond its current U.S. transit agency customer base and commercial operators.

Another area of strategic investment is the addition of top national talent to the Proterra leadership team. In the past 15 months, Proterra has hired executives from transit agencies, such as the Chicago Transit Authority and Star Metro, as well as from major industrial and transportation sector players, such as Honeywell, Navistar, Cessna and Hawker Beechcraft.

“As the manufacturer of the only Altoona-tested and road-proven EV bus on the market, Proterra is very well-positioned to capitalize on growing market demand for fuel-efficient and cost-saving transportation solutions,” said Christina Rever, director of human resources at Proterra. “While we are proud that our growth is based on a track record of solid performance, we are even more pleased that our American-made buses are contributing to U.S. energy independence and economic growth.”

The company’s most recent hires include Vice President of Marketing Heidi McNary, General Counsel Eric McCarthy and Vice President of Operations Jim Gibbs.

As VP of marketing, McNary provides nearly 20 years of experience in a variety of technology, marketing, managerial and executive roles. Prior to joining Proterra, McNary spent several years as the VP of product development and engineering and as chief technical officer for Hawker Beechcraft. In thirteen years with Honeywell Aerospace, she held marketing and strategy roles in the U.S. and Singapore before becoming executive VP of sales and marketing and COO for DeCrane Aerospace in Arizona. McNary holds a Bachelor of Science degree in materials science and engineering from the University of Arizona and an MBA forArizona State University.

McCarthy brings 17-plus years of litigation, general counsel and executive leadership experience to Proterra. He served most recently as EVP and general counsel for Seneca One Finance Inc. Previously, McCarthy was the general counsel for Honeywell Technology Solutions, Inc. Prior to joining Honeywell’s Aerospace business unit, he was an antitrust trial litigator, and was a partner in the Antitrust & Competition practice groups of Latham & Watkins LLP and Howrey. McCarthy is a recent recipient of the prestigious First Chair 2013 Top General Counsel Award and holds degrees from Dartmouth College and theUniversity of Pennsylvania Law School.

In his role as VP of operations, Gibbs will draw upon his previous roles in supply chain, logistics, and manufacturing management. Before joining Proterra, Gibbs was most recently vice president of supply chain for Tomkins Industrial & Automotive in Colorado. He also served as vice president, integrated supply chain for multiple divisions of Honeywell Aerospace in Arizona, Florida and Kansas. Before joining Honeywell, Gibbs served as plant manager for Eaton Navy Controls Division in Wisconsin, and has held other engineering, operations and manufacturing positions. Gibbs holds a Bachelor of Science degree fromMichigan Technological University, an MBA from Northwestern University and certifications as both a lean manufacturing expert and as a Six Sigma black belt.

Original Link: http://www.masstransitmag.com/press_release/11117104/sc-proterra-announces-significant-expansion-in-production-head-count-investment-to-keep-pace-with-growing-market-demand-for-ev-buses

Proterra Announces Significant Expansion

August 16, 2013

GREENVILLE, S.C., August 16, 2013 – Proterra Inc, the leading provider of zero-emission battery-electric transit solutions, announced today that it has more than doubled in size in the past nine months, adding a second production line and shift and increasing its number of employees by more than 50 percent. The company attributes this rapid growth to strong interest in lower total cost of ownership clean energy transit options.

The electric bus manufacturer has also made significant infrastructure investments in the past year to prepare for planned future growth and to expand beyond its current U.S. transit agency customer base and commercial operators.

Another area of strategic investment is the addition of top national talent to the Proterra leadership team. In the past 15 months, Proterra has hired executives from transit agencies, such as the Chicago Transit Authority and Star Metro, as well as from major industrial and transportation sector players, such as Honeywell, Navistar, Cessna and Hawker Beechcraft.

“As the manufacturer of the only Altoona-tested and road-proven EV bus on the market, Proterra is very well-positioned to capitalize on growing market demand for fuel-efficient and cost-saving transportation solutions,” said Christina Rever, director of human resources at Proterra. “While we are proud that our growth is based on a track record of solid performance, we are even more pleased that our American-made buses are contributing to U.S. energy independence and economic growth.”

The company’s most recent hires include Vice President of Marketing Heidi McNary, General Counsel Eric McCarthy and Vice President of Operations Jim Gibbs.

As VP of marketing, McNary provides nearly 20 years of experience in a variety of technology, marketing, managerial and executive roles. Prior to joining Proterra, McNary spent several years as the VP of product development and engineering and as Chief Technical Officer for Hawker Beechcraft. In thirteen years with Honeywell Aerospace, she held marketing and strategy roles in the U.S. and Singapore before becoming executive VP of sales and marketing and COO for DeCrane Aerospace in Arizona. McNary holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Materials Science and Engineering from the University of Arizona and an MBA for Arizona State University.

McCarthy brings 17+ years of litigation, general counsel and executive leadership experience to Proterra. He served most recently as EVP and General Counsel for Seneca One Finance, Inc. Previously McCarthy was the General Counsel for Honeywell Technology Solutions, Inc. Prior to joining Honeywell’s Aerospace business unit, he was an antitrust trial litigator, and was a Partner in the Antitrust & Competition practice groups of Latham & Watkins LLP and Howrey. McCarthy is a recent recipient of the prestigious First Chair 2013 Top General Counsel Award and holds degrees from Dartmouth College and the University of Pennsylvania Law School.

In his role as VP of operations, Gibbs will draw upon his previous roles in supply chain, logistics, and manufacturing management. Before joining Proterra, Gibbs was most recently vice president of supply chain for Tomkins Industrial & Automotive in Colorado. He also served as vice president, integrated supply chain for multiple divisions of Honeywell Aerospace in Arizona, Florida and Kansas. Before joining Honeywell, Gibbs served as plant manager for Eaton Navy Controls Division in Wisconsin, and has held other engineering, operations and manufacturing positions. Gibbs holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Michigan Technological University, an MBA from Northwestern University and certifications as both a lean manufacturing expert and as a Six Sigma black belt.

About Proterra

Proterra is a leader in the design and manufacture of clean technology and clean energy, providing zero emissions vehicles that enable bus fleet operators to significantly reduce operating cost while delivering clean, quiet power to the community. The EcoRide™ is the world’s first battery electric bus with fast charge enabled infinite range. With unmatched durability and energy efficiency based on rigorous industry testing at Altoona, the Proterra product is proudly made in America and based in Greenville, SC. For more information on Proterra and its technology, please visit www.proterra.com.

 

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City adds quiet new electric bus

July 16, 2013

City's fuel-free buses start service in August
City's fuel-free buses start service in August: Five zero-emission buses will cut costs in maintinance and improve fuel economy in StarMetro transportation system

The fleet of all-electric buses in Tallahassee is growing.

Now at five, StarMetro has the largest fleet of alternative-fueled public transportation in the U.S.

City and industry officials unveiled the newest in the fleet and three Proterra FastFill charging stations Tuesday morning at the C.K. Steele Plaza along with one of the buses after they rode, emission-free and nearly silently, from City Hall to the main station.

“As I stand here with such innovative technology over my head,” said Mayor John Marks, pointing at the charging system, “I’m reminded that we are not only leading the industry in Tallahassee, but across the state and frankly across the nation.”

The electric buses, which cost $950,000 each, have the potential to save the city about $167,000 a year in fuel costs as opposed to the traditional diesel fueled buses costing around $450,000 each and an additional $50,000 annually in fuel to run.

The electricity to recharge the buses will run about 14 cents per kilowatt-hour, for a total of around $7,500 in the same span, something City Commissioner Gil Ziffer said is important as the city tries to quench a budget deficit.

Those savings are “real money,” Ziffer said. “Look, they’re unbelievably efficient buses that are good for our environment and we’ve always been big into that,” noting that the buses should be a welcome addition for the 28,000 customers in the Leon, Gadsden and Wakulla areas that utilize natural gas.

Ivan Maldonado, executive director of StarMetro said in an email that while the cost for an electric bus may seem high, as more clients, like Disney, look into using them, he expects the price to drop.

Maldonado said the traditional diesel buses get 3.79 mpg, while their electric counterparts get an estimated 22.5 mpg; the three charging stations cost $1 million and will increase the fuel economy of the system by 500- 640 percent, according to Maldonado.

Cities like Los Angeles are in the process of procuring similar systems; it just signed an agreement to acquire 25 buses July 1.

Michael Hennessy, Proterra regional sales director, said the buses and the overhead charging stations would allow the buses to refuel while passengers were loading and unloading, improving route times and the number of stops the system can make.

Proterra is a South Carolina-based company that started its vision of developing domestically made, environmentally sound transportation systems in the 1990s in Denver, where the first set of buses, similar to the ones in Tallahassee today, still run.

Commissioner Scott Maddox, a strong supporter of the public transit system, said while StarMetro was aiding the people who rode the buses over 73,000 times in 2012, especially mothers and grandmothers in the community, the addition of the eco-friendly buses made him think about “taking care of the most important mother of all, Mother Nature…and not adding to our problem with fossil fuels.”

The buses, which can be recharged in 10 minutes, are the result of a $5 million award to StarMetro in 2010 from the Federal Transit Administration as part of the Transit Investments for Greenhouse Gas and Energy Reduction grant.

In 2012 the FTA increased the grant to $2 million, which StarMetro used to purchase two additional buses, to bring the number on the road to five.

Commissioner Andrew Gillum said StarMetro and the service has been a priority of the city as they work through a budget that has almost a $5 million deficit, and a possible $1 million gap in the StarMetro budget.

However in a June 19 city budget workshop Gillum said the holes in the operating system, and the subsequent fixes in route development of StarMetro, were incremental and were not enough to be considered a success story.

Tuesday, he said the addition of the new buses, in addition to being eco-friendly, would put additional sets of wheels into the public transport fleet to better serve commuters. “This is a step in the right direction to increase circulation,” Gillum said. “They are fuel efficient and save us on the cost of operating the system, but this is another step that moves us forward toward a desirable and effective bus system.”

Gillum said with the funds for the five new buses coming from grants, the opportunity to use the money the city didn’t have to spend should be capitalized on. “They allow us to put the money we have to hiring more drivers for a more efficient service,” Gillum said. “But we will have to get to the point to where we’ll have to make some hard decisions about our routes and whether we’re spending the right money on them.”

Buses will begin running regularly in August.

CLICK HERE for the link to the original story: http://www.tallahassee.com/article/20130710/NEWS01/307100030/City-adds-quiet-new-electric-bus

Electric bus goes for test drive

June 10, 2013

Top Photo

Ken Woodall, 61, of Stockton swipes his bus pass Thursday aboard the new electric bus at the Downtown Transit Center in Stockton. At the wheel is Larry Dunkley, RTD’s reigning driver of the year.

 

STOCKTON - "Hang on. Hang on."

Larry Dunkley, 57, slowly edged his bus into the shelter.

"Clear," he said above a couple of different kinds of beeps as he relinquished some - but not all - of the control to the computer on the still-moving bus.

"Docking in progress. ... The head is landing. ... Proceed slowly," he said as the bus connected to a device hanging from the shelter at the San Joaquin Regional Transit District Downtown Transit Center.

"And stop. And set parking brake, we're good," Dunkley said, unbuckling his seat belt and getting off the electric bus, which was now sucking down enough electricity to juice its batteries, topping off the charge in a few minutes.

It's the quick charge that makes using an electric bus a viable option on a working bus route, transit officials said. The all-electric bus was on a trial run Thursday, but two of them are expected to be running the regular 51 route on Monday, connecting downtown Stockton to San Joaquin General in the south and the mall transfer in central Stockton to the north.

It will be a first in Northern California, officials said.

"Electric vehicles in the past, they weren't able to go the distance," Director of Operations Norm Tuitavuki said.

The transit district's city buses are hybrid vehicles, using a mix of battery and diesel power.

The district recently acquired two electric buses through a $2.5 million state grant. It's been lauded as a pioneering effort that will be watched by other districts looking for ways to cut down on fuel costs and emissions from traditionally powered buses.

Before putting the bus into regular service in Stockton, the bus agency has been shadowing the route's regular service. The Record arranged a ridealong on one of these shadow services Thursday. It went along part of the route between the normal schedule, but it picked up paying passengers along the way.

Ken Woodall, 61, relies on the bus to get him all around the county.

He'd been watching construction as the charger was installed at the downtown stop, so he was eager to leap on and take the bus up to mall transfer stop from downtown. "I'm excited to take a ride on it and try it out."

Besides the overhead docking station, there's also other infrastructure to give the buses the jolt they need.

To put it into scale, your typical car-battery charge is about 20-30 amps, said Lou Baglin, service technician with Proterra, the bus manufacturer. "This bus, when you charge it, you're looking at about 700 amps."

The bus can charge quickly enough to top off the charge during a 10-minute break on the route at the downtown stop. But there should be enough juice in a fully charged battery to keep the bus moving along the route if it misses a chance to charge, officials said. The truncated northern half of the route took the battery down to 82 percent capacity.

The buses run both cleaner and quieter than a diesel engine.

Besides the warning and signaling beeps, the whir of the air conditioner was the only noise of the buses operation Thursday.

Frequent rider Samuel Dennis, 47, noticed the difference.

"It's nice and quiet. Relaxing."

Contact reporter Zachary K. Johnson at (209) 546-8258 orzjohnson@recordnet.com. Visit his blog atwww.recordnet.com/johnsonblog.

 

Original Story Link: http://www.recordnet.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20130607/A_NEWS/306070317

Proterra Adds Stockton, California, to List of Cities Operating its Zero-Emission All-Electric Buses

May 22, 2013

 

Latest addition is evidence of growing transit demand for lower total lifecycle cost and more sustainable buses.

On May 20, San Joaquin RTD publicly unveiled its two EcoRide buses, funded through a $2.56 million grant from the California Energy Commission.

Proterra Inc. has added San Joaquin Regional Transit District in Stockton, Calif., to the list of cities currently operating its buses.

On May 20, San Joaquin RTD publicly unveiled its two EcoRide buses, funded through a $2.56 million grant from the California Energy Commissionunder its successful alternative and renewable fuel and vehicle technology program established under California Assembly Bill 118.

This latest deployment, the first in northern California, continues Proterra’s expansion in public transit. Proterra has more than tripled transit agency orders under contract for the company’s flagship EcoRide in the past 12 months alone and is planning for its current growth path to continue.

The two composite body buses will operate on RTD’s Route 51, which will enable the buses to recharge at RTD’s Downtown Transit Center.

“We’re excited to be a part of an historic new era of zero-emission public transportation, and we are proud of what we can now offer to those who live and work in our region,” said RTD General Manager/CEO Donna DeMartino. “RTD is a local leader in the adoption of technologies that improve the environment and provide better services for our customers and our community.”

Proterra executives have worked closely with San Joaquin RTD, the California Energy Commission andCALSTART on this new electric bus project. Proterra’s Vice President of Sales and Marketing Ian Shackleton and Chief Business Development Officer and General Counsel Marc Gottschalk and Board Member Michael Linse from Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers attended the official launch ceremony on May 20.

“As the cleanest, most fuel efficient and lowest total cost of ownership option in the transit market, Proterra’s all-electric buses are the natural choice for transit agencies struggling to balance budget constraints, ever-increasing fuel costs and mounting sustainability pressures,” Shackleton said. “We are thrilled to see our buses go into service in another forward-looking community and proud to have worked closely with San Joaquin RTD and the California Energy Commission to make this project a success. We look forward to having our buses in service there for many years to come and to pointing to RTD’s success to lead other agencies to take similar steps toward the future of transit.”

Original Story Link: http://www.masstransitmag.com/press_release/10946943/ca-proterra-adds-stockton-california-to-list-of-cities-operating-its-zero-emission-all-electric-buses

Proterra Adds Stockton, California, to List of Cities Operating its Zero-Emission All-Electric Buses

May 21, 2013

Latest addition is evidence of growing transit demand for lower total lifecycle cost, more sustainable buses

GREENVILLE, S.C., May 21, 2013 – Proterra Inc, the leading provider of zero-emission commercial transit solutions and maker of the world’s first all-electric fast-charge transit bus, the EcoRide™, has added San Joaquin Regional Transit  District in Stockton, California, to the list of cities currently operating its buses.  On Monday, May 20, San Joaquin RTD publicly unveiled its two EcoRide™ buses, funded through a $2.56 million grant from the California Energy Commission under its successful Alternative and Renewable Fuel and Vehicle Technology Program established under California Assembly Bill 118.  This latest deployment, the first in northern California, continues Proterra’s expansion in public transit. Proterra has more than tripled transit agency orders under contract for the company’s flagship EcoRide™ in the past 12 months alone and is planning for its current growth path to continue.

The two composite body buses will operate on RTD’s Route 51, which will enable the buses to recharge at RTD’s Downtown Transit Center.

“We’re excited to be a part of an historic new era of zero-emission public transportation, and we are proud of what we can now offer to those who live and work in our region,” said RTD General Manager/CEO Donna DeMartino. “RTD is a local leader in the adoption of technologies that improve the environment and provide better services for our customers and our community.”

Proterra executives have worked closely with San Joaquin RTD, the California Energy Commission and CALSTART on this new electric bus project. Proterra’s Vice President of Sales and Marketing Ian Shackleton and Chief Business Development Officer and General Counsel Marc Gottschalk and Board Member Michael Linse from Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers attended the official launch ceremony on Monday, May 20.

“As the cleanest, most fuel efficient and lowest total cost of ownership option in the transit market, Proterra’s all-electric buses are the natural choice for transit agencies struggling to balance budget constraints, ever-increasing fuel costs and mounting sustainability pressures,” said Ian Shackleton.  “We are thrilled to see our buses go into service in another forward-looking community and proud to have worked closely with San Joaquin RTD and the California Energy Commission to make this project a success.  We look forward to having our buses in service there for many years to come and to pointing to RTD’s success to lead other agencies to take similar steps toward the future of transit.”

About San Joaquin Regional Transit District
The San Joaquin Regional Transit District, the regional transit provider for San Joaquin County, provides public transit services in the Stockton Metropolitan Area, throughout San Joaquin County, and between surrounding communities.  RTD’s services include Stockton Metro routes, three Metro Express (Bus Rapid Transit) corridors, Intercity service, Metro and County Hopper deviated-fixed routes, Dial-A-Ride, and San Joaquin Commuter interregional routes to the San Francisco Bay Area and Sacramento.

AboutProterra
With manufacturing in Greenville, S.C., Proterra is a leader in the clean technology and clean energy space, designing and manufacturing heavy-duty electric drive systems, energy storage systems, vehicle control systems, transit buses and fast-charging stations. Proterra’s systems are scalable to commercial buses of all sizes. Its ground-up designs have led to the EcoRide™, the world’s first full-size, 10-minute charge battery-electric transit bus. In 2011, Proterra’s EcoRide™ became the first heavy-duty electric transit bus ever to complete challenging federally required durability and reliability testing at the Bus Research and Testing Center in Altoona, Pennsylvania, demonstrating best in class energy efficiency and noise levels. For more information on Proterra and its technology, please visit: www.proterra.com.

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Proterra Electric Bus Company Selects Garrett Mikita As New CEO

May 10, 2013

 

Garrett E. Mikita has been selected by the ProterraBoard of Directors as the new president and CEO of Proterra Inc. He will takes over from David Bennett.

"We thank David Bennett for his excellent service with Proterra and wish him well," said Chairman of the Board Dave Lehmann.

Fellow board member, Michael Linse added "David's successful tenure has paved the road for Garrett who is the right person to lead Proterra into its next phase. We are excited to have hired such a talented leader as part of our team."

Mikita has spent 25 years in senior leadership roles in Fortune 50 companies and brings with him a wealth of experience and innovative approaches. He recently served as the president of the defense and space strategic business unit of Honeywell Aerospace, where he led the $5.3 billion organization. As president of the unit, Mikita was responsible for a wide range of engineering services, advanced technology products and logistical services to the U. S. Department of DefenseNASA, and international ministries of defense.

"I am committed to ensuring that Proterra remains the best electric bus company in the world in the eyes of our customers, employees, and investors," said Mikita. "This is an incredible opportunity to work with our team to leave a lasting legacy for the environment and the American taxpayer."

Mikita also served as president of Air Transport & Regional, a $4.7 billion business unit of Honeywell Aerospace, where he achieved significant revenue growth through improved performance for global customers and led key campaign wins with aircraft manufacturers, airlines and cargo companies. As a senior operations executive at Honeywell, Mikita managed over 40 manufacturing plants and led a workforce of 15,000 employees.

Mikita also served as director of manufacturing for the interiors division of United Technologies-Automotive. During his ten years with United Technologies, he held a series of progressively responsible positions including engineering, purchasing, and operations. Mikita has a long record of innovative leadership, successful sales campaigns and customer service. He is committed to the Proterra mission of building a world-leading electric bus fleet and transit system.

"I'm proud that our buses are made in America. The U.S. workforce is the most productive in the world," Mikita said. "I am thankful that our investors are committed to a growing market for zero-emission technology and clean domestic fuels."

Mikita has an MBA from the University of New Haven and a bachelor of science degree in engineering from Central Connecticut State University. He has also completed executive education programs at the Harvard Business School and the Thunderbird School of International Management. He is also a graduate of the Honeywell Executive Development Program.

Mikita and his wife Deborah enjoy time with family, staying physically fit and outdoor activities. He will begin as President and CEO on May 13.

Link to original story: http://www.masstransitmag.com/press_release/10940483/proterra-electric-bus-company-selects-garrett-mikita-as-new-ceo

Proterra Selects Garrett Mikita As New CEO

May 09, 2013

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Agency contact:
Robert Garcia
ETA Advertising for Proterra
562-499-2305 or rgarcia@etaadvertising.com

GREENVILLE, S.C., May 9, 2013 – Garrett E. Mikita has been selected by the Proterra Board of Directors as the new President and CEO of Proterra Inc., the leading provider of zero-emission commercial transit solutions and the maker of the world's first all-electric fast-charge transit bus. Mikita takes over from David Bennett.

“We thank David Bennett for his excellent service with Proterra and wish him well,” said Chairman of the Board, Dave Lehmann. Fellow board member, Michael Linse adds: “David’s successful tenure has paved the road for Garrett who is the right person to lead Proterra into its next phase. We are excited to have hired such a talented leader as part of our team.”

Mikita has spent 25 years in senior leadership roles in Fortune 50 companies and brings with him a wealth of experience and innovative approaches. He recently served as the President of the Defense & Space strategic business unit of Honeywell Aerospace, where he led the $5.3 billion organization. As President of the unit, Mikita was responsible for a wide range of engineering services, advanced technology products and logistical services to the U. S. Department of Defense, NASA, and international ministries of defense.

"I am committed to ensuring that Proterra remains the best electric bus company in the world in the eyes of our customers, employees, and investors," said Mikita. "This is an incredible opportunity to work with our team to leave a lasting legacy for the environment and the American taxpayer."

Mikita also served as President of Air Transport & Regional, a $4.7 billion business unit of Honeywell Aerospace, where he achieved significant revenue growth through improved performance for global customers and led key campaign wins with aircraft manufacturers, airlines and cargo companies. As a senior operations executive at Honeywell, Mikita managed over 40 manufacturing plants and led a workforce of 15,000 employees. Mikita also served as Director of Manufacturing for the interiors division of United Technologies-Automotive. During his ten years with United Technologies, he held a series of progressively responsible positions including engineering, purchasing, and operations. Mikita has a long record of innovative leadership, successful sales campaigns and customer service. He is committed to the Proterra mission of building a world-leading electric bus fleet and transit system.

"I'm proud that our buses are made in America. The U.S. workforce is the most productive in the world," said Mikita. "I am thankful that our investors are committed to a growing market for zero-emission technology and clean domestic fuels."

Mikita has an MBA from the University of New Haven and a Bachelor of Science degree in engineering from Central Connecticut State University. He has also completed executive education programs at the Harvard Business School and the Thunderbird School of International Management. He is also a graduate of the Honeywell Executive Development Program.

Mikita and his wife Deborah enjoy time with family, staying physically fit and outdoor activities. He will begin as President and CEO on Monday, May 13, 2013.


About Proterra

With manufacturing and headquarters in Greenville, S.C., Proterra is a leader in the clean technology and clean energy space, designing and manufacturing heavy-duty electric drive systems, energy storage systems, vehicle control systems, transit buses, and fast-charging stations. Proterra’s systems are scalable to commercial buses of all sizes. Its ground-up designs have led to the EcoRide™, the world’s first full-size, 10-minute charge battery-electric transit bus. In 2011, Proterra’s EcoRide™ became the first heavy-duty electric transit bus ever to complete challenging federally required durability and reliability testing at the Bus Research and Testing Center in Altoona, Pennsylvania, demonstrating best in class energy efficiency and noise levels. For more information on Proterra and its technology, please visit www.proterra.com.

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Green Tech Financing for Municipalities – A Case Study

March 27, 2013

Clean. Quiet. Innovative. Green. Transit agencies and municipalities are eager to display these labels on their fleets, but the current climate of tight budgets continues to slow their progress in cutting operating costs and reducing pollution.

“In transit, it’s a unique situation,” explains Ian Shackleton, vice president of sales and marketing for Proterra Inc., maker of the United States’ only zero-emission battery-electric fast-charge transit bus, the EcoRide™. “The majority of transit agencies buy with federal funds, which cover about 80% of the cost. However, with shrinking budgets or stagnant budgets, transit agencies haven’t been able to keep up with their purchasing.”

While transit agencies benefit from 80% Federal Transit Authority grants for bus purchases, they often can’t make up the additional funds needed to cover the total cost.

“We realized early on, many people can’t just write a check for these buses,” Shackleton notes. “They require financing.”

So the Greenville, S.C.-based company set out to find a financing solution, which it announced in February in partnership with Key Equipment Finance, one of the nation’s largest bank-held equipment finance companies and an affiliate of KeyCorp.

With Financing, Transit Agencies Can Convert To Cleaner Energy Fleets Faster

Proterra’s financing solution through Key Equipment Finance is a simple, straight-forward package available to municipalities, transit agencies, corporations and others seeking to purchase the company’s buses. Purchasers of the company’s 35-foot-long EcoRide™ buses can receive up to 100% financing for each bus, which allows for payments to be spread over time while providing a capital cushion to address challenging economic conditions.

“This tool is unique to the industry,” Shackleton says. “There is no one out there promoting it as a turn-key solution. We truly bring the bus, the finance mechanism, and a way to get the bus into operation.”

Municipalities and transit agencies want and need to upgrade or expand their aging fleets, but typically don’t have the budget to do so. The pressures they face include increasing ridership while reducing fuel use and lowering emissions. To achieve these goals, they need buses that are easy for their drivers to operate, lightweight, quiet, long lasting, safer, and easier and less expensive to maintain.

Proterra’s financing package is one example of the type of innovative public/private partnership encouraged by the Federal Transit Authority and a viable option for agencies to meet their needs in times of fiscal uncertainty. These needs include being able to operate for up to 20 hours a day, stop for 10 minutes or less per hour to recharge, and operate at an average a speed of between 5 and 20 miles an hour.

“With financing, Proterra is removing the capital outlay barrier for municipalities wanting to purchase these greener transit solutions,” explains Don Phillips, vice president of sales for Superior, Colo.-based Key Equipment Finance. “These communities are then able to spread the purchase cost over time while realizing the significant cost savings and operational benefits of the Proterra buses. The same cash flow they would otherwise earmark for diesel bus fuel and maintenance is adequate to cover the monthly payments for the greener bus.”

Municipalities and transit agencies also worry about covering the costs of installing charging stations for clean tech buses, including bringing in power and having electronics installed. With financing, they can bundle those associated costs with the bus purchase for a complete solution, Phillips notes.

Proterra Makes Case for Reduced Operation Costs

Proterra has proven its buses reduce fleet operating expenses through significant fuel and maintenance cost savings, which agencies and corporations can use to pay bus financing costs over time, Phillips says. “Financing essentially converts the capital outlay to a monthly, annual cash flow that is offset by fuel savings.”

Since 1999, diesel costs have risen 150% compared to 38% for electricity, Shackleton notes. In addition, electricity’s ability to substitute different fuel sources allows for increased reliability because fuel mix for electrical power in the U.S. can change depending on supply and price fluctuations.

Proterra’s EcoRide™ is currently the most fuel-efficient bus on the road and offers the lowest carbon footprint of any bus on the road, Shackleton says.

These benefits include:

  • $750,000 in fuel savings versus diesel over 16-year life cycle.
  • 44% less carbon than compressed natural gas.
  • 87,000 lbs of carbon savings annually versus compressed natural gas.

The City of Seneca, SC is projecting savings of between $40,000 and $80,000, mostly in the elimination of diesel fuel costs, after its fleet of four Proterra buses begins operating, making the city the first rural transit authority in the nation to operate an all-electric fleet.

“People will come from all around the globe to visit our city and ride on our buses,” notes Greg Dietterick, Seneca city administrator, in a press conference announcing the move to an all-electric fleet funded by a $4 million federal Transit Investments in Greenhouse Gas and Energy Reduction grant. “Proterra and their investors will use this working bus system as their model to demonstrate to the rest of the world how efficient these South Carolina-made electric buses can make their communities, their cities, their states, and their countries.”

Clean Tech Expected To Transform Transit Landscape

Currently, the U.S. transit market is a tale of two systems. The vast majority of transit systems operate fleets of traditional, lower-cost, less-energy efficient diesel buses, which are easier to replace and fund with the 80% Federal Transit Administration grants. But there also exists a small but growing list of transit systems incorporating higher-cost electric buses and other green vehicles.

Proterra, which already has agreements with transit agencies serving San Antonio, TX; Tallahassee and Tampa, FL; Seneca, SC; Worcester, MA and Stockton, CA, believes its financing option will open the doors for more customers to build greener fleets, lower costs, reduce pollution and give their customers a more quiet and clean public transportation experience.

Despite not having the benefit of third-party financing, these transit agencies have managed to add more fuel-efficient vehicles to their fleets through creative partnerships that spread costs between joint systems or by successfully competing for the federal clean technology grants.

Those grants, however, are dwindling at the same time there is a growing movement toward more sustainable transportation. In this climate, Proterra and Key Equipment Finance believe their financing solution will garner interest not only from municipalities and other government entities, but also from commercial buyers, including corporations and colleges and universities, who are also accustomed to equipment financing.

“There are a lot of opportunities to go green,” Shackleton explains. “Our electric buses are one example. One of our buses weighs about 28,000 pounds. If our bus runs for one year, we take about 56,000 pounds of carbon per year out of the air, and it’s in excess of 600,000 lbs of carbon by one bus in its lifetime.”

In addition, when a municipality or transit agency chooses an electric bus over a diesel bus, it keeps the power generation in the state, which in turn benefits from the income tax of the power generation employees, the power generation tax, and any new construction benefits.

Conversely, Shackleton notes, “If you are buying diesel fuel – that money goes to a foreign national or to a big oil company like Exxon.”

Traditional buses also differ from battery-electric buses in how they impact the communities they serve. From an urbanization standpoint, this means municipalities and transit agencies, by adding battery-electric buses into their fleets, can expand their routes to go off main routes and into residential settings without anyone complaining about it.

“When our bus drives by you, you don’t hear it,” Shackleton says. “It’s like an electric golf cart. It’s a whole new experience.”

Original Link: http://www.equipmentfa.com/articles/1657/green-tech-financing-for-municipalities-a-case-study

StarMetro closer to launching electric buses

March 27, 2013

StarMetro

 

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- StarMetro is one step closer to launching its brand new all-electric, zero-emission buses. This week, the transit agency will begin construction on a fast charge station at C.K. Steele Plaza. This FastFill charging station, manufactured by Proterra Inc., will charge the electric buses at the central transfer station in as little as ten minutes.

"When fully implemented, we will have five electric buses in operation, which will be the largest electric bus fleet in the nation,” said City Commissioner Scott Maddox, who serves on the city's Long Range Planning Target Issue Committee. "This action, along with our commitment to compressed natural gas fueling, once again reflects Tallahassee as a leader in sustainability and in finding ways to efficiently help our citizens travel throughout the community. The fact that we have been awarded over $7 million in federal grants also shows that our work is being recognized on a national level."

"When fully implemented, we will have five electric buses in operation, which will be the largest electric bus fleet in the nation,” said City Commissioner Scott Maddox, who serves on the city's Long Range Planning Target Issue Committee. "This action, along with our commitment to compressed natural gas fueling, once again reflects Tallahassee as a leader in sustainability and in finding ways to efficiently help our citizens travel throughout the community. The fact that we have been awarded over $7 million in federal grants also shows that our work is being recognized on a national level."

Ivan Maldonado, interim executive director of StarMetro, said the decision to place the Proterra FastFill charging station at C.K. Steele Plaza will eliminate the need for the electric buses to go off line to receive a charge at StarMetro's main facility on Appleyard Drive. "With the charging station at the plaza, the electric buses can rapidly recharge on-route as customers unload and board the bus.”

To recharge at the Proterra FastFill charging station, an electric bus simply pulls into the plaza and automatically connects with an overhead system that links to the bus’ high-capacity charger. The charging station includes advanced wireless controls that facilitate the docking process. The wireless controls identify that the electric bus is present and then automatically guides and connects the bus with the charging station, free from coach operator involvement.

In order to keep customers away from the charging station, StarMetro will construct a wall surrounding the high-voltage area. This wall will feature individual block pieces that are cast with a design, and then installed along the wall. The design, created by artists, will depict the transition of nature and energy through the seasons. This design will be visible by motorists and StarMetro customers in the plaza.

Staff expects construction to be completed by July, weather permitting. After a month-long testing period, the fast charge station will be operational, and the electric buses can begin service. By the end of August, the electric buses should be fully operational.

“Once our new electric buses are in service, we will be the first transit agency in the state of Florida and the first of the east coast to operate these revolutionary electric buses,” said Maldonado. “We are proud to be on the cutting edge of technology, changing the transportation industry to better serve our loyal customers and keep our impact on the environment to a minimum.”

In 2010, the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) awarded StarMetro over $5 million dollars of the Transit Investments for Green Gas and Energy Reduction (TIGGER) II grant in order to purchase three all-electric buses and construct a charging station. The following year, StarMetro signed a contract with Proterra for the production of these buses and charging station. Last year, FTA upped its award to StarMetro by $2 million dollars for the purchase of two additional electric buses. With the delivery of the two additional electric buses, which are currently under construction, StarMetro will have five all-electric buses in its fleet.

For more information about StarMetro services, please call StarMetro’s main office at 850891-5200 or visit Talgov.com/starmetro. Other ways to view information include liking StarMetro’s official Facebook page at Facebook.com/starmetrotransit or following the organization on Twitter at Twitter.com/ridestarmetro.

ORIGINAL POST: http://www.wtxl.com/news/starmetro-closer-to-launching-electric-buses/article_3cec9c20-8fec-11e2-8a37-0019bb30f31a.html

Proterra Adds Commercial Sales Leader to Expand Non-Transit Agency Business

March 27, 2013

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Agency contact: 

JoAnne Laffey Abed, public relations manager
VantagePoint Marketing for Proterra
864.331.1265 or jabed@vantagep.com
 

Addition marks next phase in company’s growth plans

GREENVILLE, S.C., March 27, 2013 – Proterra Inc, the leading provider of zero-emission commercial transit solutions and maker of the world’s first battery-electric fast-charge transit bus, the EcoRide™, has hired Steve Waters as director of commercial sales and finance. This is the first dedicated commercial sales role for Proterra and marks the company’s increasing focus on adding commercial buyers to it growing list of transit agency customers.

With more than 25 years of sales experience in the commercial truck sector, Waters comes to Proterra from Navistar, where he held various senior leadership roles in several divisions. He also brings deep financing expertise, having served as nation marketing manager and district credit manager at Financial Corporation (Nifco). Waters will lead the charge to grow the commercial side of its business, which will target colleges and universities, airports, corporate campuses and venues such as theme parks.

Waters will also work closely with Key Equipment Finance, with whom Proterra recently launched a partnership that will allow commercial entities to finance Proterra buses. Waters will also be responsible for strategic planning, market positioning, customer acquisition/business development and operational planning for this key area.

“We have worked hard to become the established leader in EV mass transit, but commercial interest in clean, environmentally-friendly bus transportation is also at an all-time high,” said Proterra Vice President of Sales and Marketing, Ian Shackleton. “With our new financing package and the addition of a highly tenured and knowledgeable commercial sales leader like Steve, Proterra is exceptionally well-positioned to expand beyond transit agencies to serve the needs of this large and growing market.”

AboutProterra

With manufacturing in Greenville, S.C., Proterra is a leader in the clean technology and clean energy space, designing and manufacturing heavy-duty electric drive systems, energy storage systems, vehicle control systems, transit buses and fast-charging stations. Proterra’s systems are scalable to commercial buses of all sizes.  Its ground-up designs have led to the EcoRide™, the world’s first full-size, 10-minute charge battery-electric transit bus. In 2011, Proterra’s EcoRide™ became the first heavy-duty electric transit bus ever to complete challenging federally required durability and reliability testing at the Bus Research and Testing Center in Altoona, Pennsylvania, demonstrating best in class energy efficiency and noise levels. For more information on Proterra and its technology, please visit: www.proterra.com.

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Texas’ VIA rolls out electric bus service

March 07, 2013

On Tuesday, 2013 VIA Metropolitan Transit rolled out a new kind of transit bus for the San Antonio area, one that runs solely on electricity provided by on-board batteries.

Called the Arc, the electric bus service was made possible by a grant from the Transit Investments for Greenhouse Gas and Energy Reduction program as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. The funding was made available to encourage the use of cutting-edge environmental technologies, and a total of $100 million was awarded in a nationwide competition. 

VIA is one of just 43 transit agencies from across the nation that received this funding, and it is also the only transit agency in Texas that was awarded in this process.

The grant of $5,000,000 was given to VIA Metropolitan Transit to purchase and operate three electric-powered buses built by Proterra in the downtown area. VIA is just one of two transit agencies in the U.S. to have these buses in service.

“VIA is excited to have the opportunity to bring electric buses to San Antonio,” said Jeffrey Arndt, VIA’s interim president/CEO. “The Arc service marks a new direction for VIA as we introduce a completely emissions-free way to provide transit service to the central business district.”

The three composite body buses will operate on VIA’s downtown circulator routes and be recharged at the Robert Thompson Transit Station at the Alamodome. As the batteries are charged, they will receive energy that is generated either by solar panels installed as part of the project or by turbines in West Texas wind farms as part of VIA’s Windtricity agreement with CPS Energy.

Link to original story: http://www.metro-magazine.com/news/story/2013/02/texas-via-rolls-out-electric-bus-service.aspx

Proterra Adds San Antonio to List of Cities Operating its Zero-Emissions Battery-Electric Buses

March 07, 2013

 

Latest addition evidence of growing transit demand for lower total lifecycle cost, more sustainable buses

GREENVILLE, S.C., Feb. X, 2012 – Proterra Inc, the leading provider of zero-emission commercial transit solutions and maker of the world’s first battery-electric fast-charge transit bus, the EcoRide™, has added San Antonio, Texas to the list of cities currently operating its buses. San Antonio’s VIA Metropolitan’s three Proterra-made bus 100 percent battery-electric bus fleet, called the Arc, went into service Tuesday, Feb. 26. This latest delivery continues a major growth spurt for Proterra, which has tripled orders under contract for the company’s flagship EcoRide™ from public transit agencies in the past 12 months alone and is planning for its current growth path to continue.

The three composite body buses will operate on VIA’s downtown circulator routes, and they will be recharged at the Robert Thompson Transit Station at the Alamodome. As the batteries are charged, they will receive energy that is generated either by solar panels installed as part of the project or by turbines in West Texas wind farms as part of VIA’s Windtricity agreement with CPS Energy, extending the environmental benefits of this already sustainability-focused approach to transit.

“VIA is excited to have the opportunity to bring electric buses to San Antonio,” said Jeffrey Arndt, VIA’s interim president and CEO. “The Arc service marks a new direction for VIA as we introduce a completely emissions-free way to provide transit service to the central business district.”

Proterra executives have worked closely with VIA Metropolitan and the San Antonio community on this new electric bus project, and Proterra’s CEO David Bennett and Vice President of Sales and Marketing Ian Shackleton attended the official launch ceremony on Tuesday, February 26.

“As the cleanest, most fuel efficient and lowest total cost of ownership option in the transit market, Proterra’s battery-electric buses are the natural choice for transit agencies struggling to balance budget constraints, ever-increasing fuel costs and mounting sustainability pressures,” said David Bennett. “We are thrilled to see our buses go into service in another community and proud to have worked closely with VIA Metropolitan to take this critical step forward.  We look forward to having our buses in service there for many years to come and to pointing to San Antonio’s success to lead other agencies to take similar steps toward the future of transit.”

About VIA Metropolitan Transit

VIA Metropolitan Transit began providing public transportation service in the greater San Antonio area in March 1978 and provides the following services: Bus service including downtown streetcar service, paratransit service for riders with disabilities, vanpool service for commuters, special event park & ride service.  For more information, please visit www.viainfo.net.

AboutProterra

With manufacturing in Greenville, S.C., Proterra is a leader in the clean technology and clean energy space, designing and manufacturing heavy-duty electric drive systems, energy storage systems, vehicle control systems, transit buses and fast-charging stations. Proterra’s systems are scalable to commercial buses of all sizes. Its ground-up designs have led to the EcoRide, the world’s first full-size, 10-minute charge battery-electric transit bus. In 2011, Proterra’s EcoRide became the first heavy-duty electric transit bus ever to complete challenging federally required durability and reliability testing at the Bus Research and Testing Center in Altoona, Pennsylvania, demonstrating best in class energy efficiency and noise levels. For more information on Proterra and its technology, please visit: www.proterra.com.

 

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Leaders of Proterra, San Joaquin Regional Transit District (RTD) Thank the CA Energy Commission

March 07, 2013

 

Leaders of Proterra, San Joaquin Regional Transit District (RTD) Formally Thank Members of the California Energy Commission, California Environmental Protection Agency, CALSTART for Making Public Zero-Emission Vehicle (ZEV) Transportation Possible

Battery-electric bus demonstrated at yesterday’s Sacramento event set to go into service for RTD in May

Sacramento, Calif. – March 1, 2013 – Proterra Inc., the world’s on manufacturer of federally-tested 100 percent battery electric buses and the San Joaquin Regional Transit District (RTD) held an event Thursday, Feb. 28 in Sacramento to formally thank state agencies and the leadership of Governor Jerry Brown for making the zero emissions battery electric bus a reality in the air pollution challenged San Joaquin Valley. The event included a bus tour and demo of the new Proterra BE35 EcoRide™ bus set to go into service for RTD in May.

Industry leaders, environmentalists and public transportation advocates are heralding this switch to a cleaner, more fuel-efficient and environmentally-friendly transit option as a major victory for all Californians.

The bus toured various state agencies in Sacramento, to validate the efforts of forward thinking agency leadership and staff who made zero-emission public transportation possible through grant supported innovation and to provide a successful example of a proven path forward for other industry leaders and governments who see value in manufacturing sustainable technologies.

The deployment of buses in Stockton was made possible by the California Energy Commission’s grant of $2.57 million under Assembly Bill 118 administered by CALSTART. “Urban communities that rely on public transportation are disproportionately affected by air pollution. That makes eliminating harmful tailpipe emissions from public buses a great way to make a real difference,” said California Energy Commission Chair Robert B. Weisenmiller. “Proterra’s electric buses will help to protect the health of those who ride them, as well as those who work and live near the routes they travel.”

CALSTART works with businesses, fleets and government to develop and implement clean, efficient transportation solutions. “The Proterra electric bus produces zero emissions.  This is the type of technology we will need going forward to improve the air quality in the San Joaquin Valley.  Hopefully, this will be the first of many zero emission buses for RTD,” said CALSTART President and CEO John Boesel.

Proterra has developed the world’s first full size battery electric-drive transit bus capable of fully charging in under 10 minutes. “This grant has made possible critical development in our fast charge battery-electric bus, including driveline improvements which we believe will make our bus more robust and reliable than existing diesel and CNG counterparts and on a cost-competitive basis,” commented Marc Gottschalk, chief development officer for Proterra. “We are deeply appreciative of the support and collaboration we have received from the California Energy Commission, CALSTART and the California Air Resources Board. They all have been instrumental in providing the public the benefits of quiet, neighborhood friendly, zero emission technology.”

The San Joaquin Regional Transit District will launch the buses into revenue service in May. Commenting on the deployment of the new vehicles Donna DeMartino, General Manager/CEO of the transit district noted, “We’ve been a local leader in the adoption of technologies that improve the environment and provide better services for our customers and our community. This project couldn’t have been done without the California Energy Commission, CALSTART, Cal/EPA and the California Air Resources Board. We’re excited to be a part of an historic new era of zero-emission public transportation, and we are proud of what we can now offer to those who live and work in our region.”

AboutProterra

With manufacturing in Greenville, S.C., Proterra is a leader in the clean technology and clean energy space, designing and manufacturing heavy-duty electric drive systems, energy storage systems, vehicle control systems, transit buses and fast-charging stations. Proterra’s systems are scalable to commercial buses of all sizes. Its ground-up designs have led to the EcoRide, the world’s first full-size, 10-minute charge battery-electric transit bus. In 2011, Proterra’s EcoRide became the first heavy-duty electric transit bus ever to complete challenging federally required durability and reliability testing at the Bus Research and Testing Center in Altoona, Pennsylvania, demonstrating best in class energy efficiency and noise levels. For more information on Proterra and its technology, please visit: www.proterra.com.

                                                                                                                                                     

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Proterra Partners with Key Equipment Finance to Offer Battery-Electric Bus Financing Packages

February 19, 2013

 

GREENVILLE, S.C., February 19, 2013 – Proterra Inc, the leading provider of zero-emission commercial transit solutions and maker of the world’s first battery-electric fast-charge transit bus, the EcoRide™, has announced it has entered into an agreement with Key Equipment Finance to offer a simple, straight-forward financing package for transit agencies, corporations and other commercial entities seeking to purchase Proterra buses.  Key Equipment Finance is one of the nation’s largest bank-held equipment finance companies and an affiliate of KeyCorp (NYSE: KEY). 

This new partnership is designed to provide transit agencies with an additional method of funding the local portion of Federal Transit Administration (FTA) supported bus purchases. With many federal grant programs no longer available and many transit properties unable to secure the local match dollars needed to supplement their FTA funding, this new option will be attractive to agencies of all sizes looking to upgrade or expand their fleets. Under terms of the deal, purchasers can finance up to 100 percent of the cost of each bus, allowing them to spread their payments over time and provide for a capital cushion in an uncertain economic environment.

With the growing movement toward more sustainable transportation, Proterra and Key Equipment Finance also believe that this financing option will generate interest from commercial buyers, including corporations and colleges and universities, who are more accustomed to equipment financing.

Because Proterra buses have been proven to dramatically reduce fleet operating expenses through significant fuel and maintenance cost savings, Proterra predicts that many agencies and corporations will be able to pay for the bus financing with these savings.

 “Our new financing package from a top-tier lender provides an exciting opportunity for those who want and need to upgrade or expand their aging fleets but don’t have the budget to do so,” said Ian Shackleton, vice president of marketing and sales, Proterra Inc. “Our partnership with Key Equipment Finance gives them a viable option to meet their needs in times of fiscal uncertainty. This financing package is an excellent example of the type of innovative public/private partnership the FTA encourages.”

“Proterra’s entire corporate philosophy is built on putting the customer first, and this finance program is one more example of a Proterra offering designed with the customer’s needs in mind,” said Tim Duerr, senior vice president of business development at Key Equipment Finance. “We look forward to this partnership and are confident Proterra will see even greater customer satisfaction as the result of offering flexible financing as part of the sales process.”

 

About Key Equipment Finance

Key Equipment Finance is one of the largest bank-based equipment finance providers in the U.S. The company provides tailored equipment lease and finance solutions for commercial clients and government entities. Through its vendor services unit, equipment finance programs are developed for manufacturers, distributors and resellers in the U.S., Canada and Europe. Key Equipment Finance also provides lease capital markets support for corporations looking to optimize risk and revenue. 

Headquartered outside Denver, Colorado, Key Equipment Finance manages $8.5 billion in assets and originates nearly $4 billion of equipment financing annually. The company has management and operations in Albany, New York; London, England; Frankfurt, Germany; Madrid, Spain; Milan, Italy; Paris, France and Toronto, Canada. The company, which supports clients in 17 countries, employs approximately 500 people worldwide, and has been in the equipment financing business for over 35 years. For more information, visit www.KEFonline.com.

About KeyCorp

KeyCorp was organized more than 160 years ago and is headquartered in Cleveland, Ohio. One of the nation's largest bank-based financial services companies, Key has assets of approximately $89.2 billion on December 31, 2012.

 

Key provides deposit, lending, cash management and investment services to individuals and small businesses and medium-sized businesses in 14 states under the name KeyBank National Association. Key also provides a broad range of sophisticated corporate and investment banking products, such as merger and acquisition advice, public and private debt and equity, syndications and derivatives to middle market companies in selected industries throughout the United States under the KeyBanc Capital Markets trade name. For more information, visit www.key.com. KeyBank is Member FDIC.

 

About Proterra

With manufacturing in Greenville, S.C., Proterra is a leader in the clean technology and clean energy space, designing and manufacturing heavy-duty electric drive systems, energy storage systems, vehicle control systems, transit buses and fast-charging stations. Proterra’s systems are scalable to commercial buses of all sizes.  Its ground-up designs have led to the EcoRide™, the world’s first full-size, 10-minute charge battery-electric transit bus. Proterra has achieved a number of milestones in the past 18 months, growing from two to seven major transit agency customers with a large and growing pipeline.  In 2012, Proterra’s EcoRide™ became the first heavy-duty electric transit bus ever to complete challenging federally required durability and reliability testing at the Bus Research and Testing Center in Altoona, Pennsylvania, demonstrating best in class energy efficiency and noise levels. For more information on Proterra and its technology, please visit www.proterra.com.

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CARTA May Join With Nashville In Purchase Of New Electric Buses For Transit Routes

January 18, 2013

CARTA is exploring the possibility of partnering with Nashville for a joint purchase from a Greenville, S.C., manufacturer of new electric buses for transit routes, officials said Thursday.

Lisa Maragnano, CARTA assistant executive director, said a prototype of the large electric bus manufactured by Proterra Inc. will be on display here soon.

She said the bus charges from the top in two and a half to three minutes, whereas bottom-charging electric buses take up to 15 minutes.

Tom Dugan, CARTA executive director, said such a bus could be used on CARTA's longest route - from downtown to Hamilton Place Mall - perhaps with a charging station at Eastgate.

He said CARTA is planning to purchase 28 new buses, including three of the large electric buses. eight transit buses, six replacement Shuttle electric buses and 11 Care A Van vehicles.

Ms. Maragnano said she went to Greenville to inspect the new buses and was impressed. She said the firm has 43 engineers on staff and is looking to hire six more. Proterra raised $23 million in venture capital in November.

Mr. Dugan said he can envision the day perhaps 20 years down the road when the entire CARTA fleet is electric.

CARTA celebrates its 40th anniversary on Jan. 28 with discount fares, cakes and refreshments.

The annual employee dinner will be Feb. 17 at the Chattanooga Choo Choo.

Mr. Dugan said CARTA is still operating on a tight budget and has trimmed expenses in a number of areas.

There was a major insurance in the health insurance item. He said Cigna initially said the rise would be 30 percent, and it ended up at 14.4 percent.

He said CARTA is looking into the possibility of partnering with the city of Chattanooga on health insurance, noting that the city has its own pharmacy, medical clinic and wellnesscenter.

Officials said the Incline Railway is having the normally very slow January, and the same is expected for February. John Lively, CARTA board member, suggested a promotion that gives "two tickets for the price of one." He said it might encourage more locals to ride the Incline up Lookout Mountain. 

View original story here.

GM Ventures

November 26, 2012

General Motors Company (NYSE:GM): According to the Detroit News, General Motor Company’s venture capital arm, GM Ventures, and six other companies have invested $23 million in Proterra, the electric bus maker’s new round of financing.  In 2011, GM Ventures invested $6 million into Proterra.

 

Original Link

GM Invests in Proterra Electric Bus Maker, again!

November 26, 2012

GM Ventures, the venture capital arm of General Motors, has invested in the electric bus making company Proterra, known for its EcoRide electric bus, for the second time in two years. Report published on The Detroit Newsmentions that Proterra has received a total investment of $23 million from six companies, which also includes GM Ventures. This investment will be used for increasing the presence of Proterra into new and developing markets as well as for speedier delivery of the EcoRide to its customers.

This is GM’s second investment in Proterra as the company had invested $6 million in the electric bus maker last year. Currently, Proterra has 7 transit authorities as its customers, which is supposed to get a big boost because of this investment. The company is also focussing on various advanced technological solutions for the global transportation industry, which includes some urban mobility solutions as well.

According to GM Ventures, Proterra is only one of the several firms that it is investing in. Apart from Proterra, this venture capital firm has also invested in various companies in the field of car batteries, electric motors, clean fuel, advanced materials etc.

The EcoRide electric bus is powered by 54-72 kWh lithium-titanate battery packs, which the company claims can replace almost 80% of the buses currently running on road without hampering running schedule and service efficiency in any way.

 

Original Link: http://www.greentourer.com/gm-invests-in-proterra-electric-bus-maker-again/

General Motors Invests More Into Proterra

November 26, 2012

 

In the latest round of financing, EV bus-maker Proterra managed to recharge its funds by raising another $23 million to fulfill rising demand for its EcoRide electric bus built for DC fast charging. Specifically, demand for Proterra’s flagship bus has tripled over the past year.
General Motors, through GM Ventures, invested a currently undisclosed amount of money into Proterra, building its stake in the promising start-up transit company. However, this round of financing was led by the recently founded Hennessey Capital. Other investors included NMT Capital, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Mitsui & Co. Global Investment, Inc., 88 Green Ventures and Vision Ridge Partners.
 
Original Link: http://gmauthority.com/blog/2012/11/general-motors-invests-more-into-proterra/

Proterra Raises $23M for Electric Bus Deployment

November 26, 2012

 

Electrical bus manufacturer Proterra Inc has raised $ 23 million in a Series B round to accelerate deployment of its EcoRideTM
 
quick-charge transit bus.
 
New investor, Hennessey Capital, led the round, which was joined by NMT Capital and existing traders, Kleiner Perkins Caufield &amp Byers (KPCB), GM Ventures, Mitsui &amp Co. Global Investment, Inc., 88 Green Ventures and Vision Ridge Partners.
Proterra has tripled orders below contract from public transit companies more than the previous 12 months because of its capability to deliver emissions no cost, quiet buses to struggling municipalities that have aging fleets and need a monetary return, notes Rajiv Ghatalia, President of Hennessey Capital Management, who will join Proterra’s board.
 
Proterra has contracts with seven key transit companies and is the first heavy-duty electric transit bus to complete federally essential sturdiness and dependability testing, demonstratig very best-in- class energy efficiency and noise ranges.
 
Founded in 2004, Proterra is primarily based in Colorado and manufactures in South Carolina. Its EcoRide bus has a 40 mile variety and can be charged in much less than ten minues thanks to light-bodyweight composite body. The electric drive motor is provided by UQM (NYSEAMEX: UQM). Proterra says the bus delivers greater than $ 300,000 financial savings in complete lifetime operating bills. 
 
Original Link:  http://greengrowthinvestment.com/tag/million/

Proterra announces further growth, investment

November 26, 2012

 

Proterra Inc., provider of zero-emission commercial transit solutions and maker of the world’s first battery-electric fast-charge transit bus, the EcoRide, closed a $23 million Series B financing round amid rising demand for its transit solutions. Proterra has tripled orders under contract for the company’s flagship EcoRide from public transit agencies in the past twelve months alone and is planning for its current growth path to continue.

The round was led by new investor, Hennessey Capital, who joined additional outside investor NMT Capital as well as existing investors, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, GM Ventures, Mitsui & Co. Global Investment Inc., 88 Green Ventures and Vision Ridge Partners. In conjunction with the investment closing, Rajiv Ghatalia, president/founder of Hennessey Capital Management LLC, will join Proterra’s Board as an advisor.

Before joining Proterra’s board and founding Hennessey Capital, Ghatalia spent 16 years in Asia Pacific, first at Goldman Sachs then at Warburg Pincus, and has served on boards such as Transpacific Industries, Nikko Asset Management and Junior Achievement. “

This investment round will accelerate Proterra’s revolutionary EcoRide bus deployment to new U.S. transit customers, open new markets and spur next generation system offerings, according to the company.

The $60 billion global transit market continues to recognize the ideal fit for battery-electric fast-charge systems, which yield 500%+ energy efficiency gains and 80% emission reduction and provide an attractive passenger experience.

Proterra has achieved a number of milestones in the past 18 months, growing from two to seven major transit agency customers with a large and growing pipeline. Earlier this year, Proterra’s EcoRide became the first heavy-duty electric transit bus ever to complete challenging federally required durability and reliability testing at the Bus Research and Testing Center in Altoona, Pa., demonstrating best in class energy efficiency and noise levels.

Original Link: http://www.metro-magazine.com/News/Story/2012/11/Proterra-announces-further-growth-investment.aspx

Venture capital deals

November 26, 2012

 

 

CNNMoney

Term SheetThe latest on private equity, M&A, deals and movements — from Wall Street to Silicon Valley

 

Proterra, a Greenville, S.C.-based maker of electric buses, has raised $23 million in new VC funding.Hennessey Capital Management led the round, and was joined by NMT Capital and return backers like Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers and GM Ventures. The company previously raised around $30 million.www.proterra.com

Original Link

Proterra Raises $23M More To Roll Out Electric Buses Nationally

November 26, 2012

 

Lora Kolodny

November 21, 2012

(c) 2012 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.

A company providing the public transportation industry a quiet and low-emissions alternative to traditional diesel buses, Proterra Inc ., raised $23 million in a Series B round of venture funding, it announced Wednesday.

The company manufactures its EcoRide brand heavy-duty electric transit buses domestically in Greenville, S.C.

Since closing its last, $30 million round of venture capital in 2011, the company has managed to sell its buses to seven different U.S. transit authorities. Passing federally required tests of durability and reliability at the Bus Research and Testing Center in Altoona, Pa., helped it crack open the domestic market.

"It's a completely different story for the company now, in terms of the momentum for customers taking this seriously in the transit space," said Proterra's Chief Executive David Bennett . "We have an [electric] vehicle that runs all day long, saves them money [on fuel and maintenance] and provides a more attractive environment for riders, and seven huge customers that help us prove that to other agencies."

The "payback and economics" promised by electric vehicles in the car market only work for the wealthy, Mr. Bennett noted. That limits the market for cars like the high-performance EVs made by Tesla Motors Inc . or Fisker Automotive Inc . But in the market for "moving people," electric vehicles offer a significant "payback and better economics" in the first year cities and other organizations start using them, Mr. Bennett said.

Hennessey Capital Management led the Series B investment in Proterra, joined by NMT Capital along with Proterra's earlier investors 88 Green Ventures, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers , GM Ventures, Mitsui & Co. Global Investment and Vision Ridge Partners .

With this funding, Rajiv Ghatalia, president and founder of Hennessey Capital , will join Proterra's board as an advisor.

Mr. Ghatalia said the market opportunity for electric buses in North America alone represents a huge one, especially as the cost of fuel rises here, and cities work harder to improve air quality and noise levels at the behest of environmental regulators and citizen activists concerned about these matters.

Proterra appealed to his fund, he said, because "We love the management team...And these people have a tech that works here and now, is on the road as we speak, actually creating a value proposition that's huge."

In the next 18 months, investors expect Proterra to use its new capital to ramp up operations. "The orders are coming in nicely, and now we need to make sure the product gets out just as nicely," Mr. Ghatalia said.

In the summer of 2012, President Barack Obama signed a bill called "The Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act", or MAP-21, that could prove a boon to companies like Proterra that supply the "surface transportation" industry and public transit groups in the U.S.

Proterra's ancillary markets include college-campus transportation providers and airport-transportation providers. But the company's immediate focus remains in North American cities.

Electric-vehicle makers that compete with Proterra, including Smith Electric Vehicles Corp ., MUNI Skoda / Electric Transit Inc. or Daimler AG , focus on trucks, vans and shuttles, or hybrid and natural-gas buses, more than large all-electric buses.

Proterra claims its buses charge faster than any other all-electric models on the road in the U.S. They take about 10 minutes to fully charge, according to the company website.

http://www.proterra.com

Write to Lora Kolodny at lora.kolodny@dowjones.com. Follow her on Twitter at @lorakolodny

Original link:  http://pevc.dowjones.com/Article?an=DJFVW00020121121e8blu3j6w

Proterra Closes $23M Series B Investment on Accelerating Sales Growth

November 21, 2012

Home

 

GREENVILLE, S.C.Nov. 21, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Proterra Inc, the leading provider of zero-emission commercial transit solutions and maker of the world's first battery-electric fast-charge transit bus, the EcoRide™, has closed a $23 million Series B financing round amid rising demand for its transit solutions.  Proterra has tripled orders under contract for the company's flagship EcoRide™ from public transit agencies in the past twelve months alone and is planning for its current growth path to continue.

The round was led by new investor, Hennessey Capital, who joined additional outside investor NMT Capital as well as existing investors, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, GM Ventures, Mitsui & Co. Global Investment, Inc., 88 Green Ventures and Vision Ridge Partners.  In conjunction with the investment closing, Rajiv Ghatalia, President and Founder of Hennessey Capital Management LLC, will join Proterra's Board as an advisor. 

Before joining Proterra's board and founding Hennessey Capital, Ghatalia spent sixteen years in Asia Pacific, first at Goldman Sachs then at Warburg Pincus, and has served on boards such as Transpacific Industries, Nikko Asset Management and Junior Achievement.

"Our investment in Proterra demonstrates our firm belief and that of our fellow investors that the company's EcoRide™ has solved a major concern for the world's aging transit fleets – that is, how to deliver emissions free, quiet bus transit that provides an attractive financial return for struggling transit agencies," said Mr. Ghatalia.  "Proterra's innovative products, industry leading customers, top flight management and talented work force have this company poised for tremendous future success, and I look forward to being a part of the team charged with taking this thriving company to the next level."

"This latest round of investment and the addition of Mr. Ghatalia to our board are evidence of the vast progress Proterra has made in terms of business development, infrastructure, technological advancement, demand generation and process improvements, and to our investors' confidence in our business," statedDavid Bennett, Proterra's CEO.  "We intend to use the funds and to leverage Mr. Ghatalia's global finance expertise and keen business acumen to continue our growth."

This investment round will accelerate Proterra's revolutionary EcoRide™ bus deployment to new US transit customers, open new markets and spur next generation system offerings.  The $60 billion global transit market continues to recognize the ideal fit for battery-electric fast-charge systems, which yield 500%+ energy efficiency gains and 80% emission reduction and provide an attractive passenger experience.

Proterra has achieved a number of milestones in the past 18 months, growing from two to seven major transit agency customers with a large and growing pipeline.  Earlier this year, Proterra's EcoRide™ became the first heavy-duty electric transit bus ever to complete challenging federally required durability and reliability testing at the Bus Research and Testing Center in Altoona, Pennsylvania, demonstrating best in class energy efficiency and noise levels.

About Proterra
With manufacturing in Greenville, S.C., Proterra is a leader in the clean technology and clean energy space, designing and manufacturing heavy-duty electric drive systems, energy storage systems, vehicle control systems, transit buses and fast-charging stations. Proterra's systems are scalable to commercial buses of all sizes.  Its ground-up designs have led to the EcoRide™, the world's first full-size, 10-minute charge battery-electric transit bus. For more information on Proterra and its technology, please visit:www.proterra.com.

 

Original Link

GM Ups Stake in Battery Bus Maker

November 21, 2012

 

Just the latest move by the automaker’s aggressive new venture capital subsidiary.

by  on Nov.21, 2012

 

Proterra's bus can log 40 miles before needing a 10-minute quick charge.

General Motors is increasing its stake in a South Carolina start-up producing battery-electric buses.

The move is just the latest by GM Ventures targeting potentially lucrative opportunities that can help it develop lighter, cleaner, smarter and lower-cost vehicles – while also generating potentially significant new sources of cash if the subsidiary can match the performance of other high-risk investors.

Come Along for the Ride!

GM Ventures is one of six venture capital firms, or VCs, pumping $23 million into Proterra, Inc., of Greenville, S.C.  Among the other investors is the giant Silicon Valley VC fund Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, which has joined GM in several other projects funded by GM Ventures. It’s the second round of funding for Proterra that the Detroit-based investment fund has participated in.

 

Jon Lauckner serves as both head of GM Ventures and GM's Chief Technical Officer.

Protera’s EcoRide buses can travel up to 40 miles and then recharge in as little as 10 minutes, targeting a number of urban transit systems. The firm reports its list of customers has grown from two to seven over the last 18 months, and the firm will use the new investment to seek business overseas, it says. Proterra’s workforce has grown nearly six-fold, to 175, since 2010.

With an initial $100 million at its disposal, GM Ventures has announced a string of investmentsin recent months, all focused on potentially lucrative start-ups.  They cover a wide array of companies, from a Rhode Island manufacturer of ultra-strong steels to an Israeli firm that has developed a way to let motorists wirelessly charge their cellphones while driving.  The VC has backed a start-up whose technologies could make it easier to weld aluminum and another focused on solar power.

But all have connections to the transportation industry, according to 54-year-old Jon Lauckner, who serves a dual role as GM’s Chief Technology Officer and the head of GM Ventures which was formed in June 2010.

“Technology is evolving really, really rapidly in automotive today,” Lauckner, a 33-year GM veteran, said during a media briefing in San Francisco last week.

He outlined five keep areas that GM Ventures is focusing on:

  • Batteries, motors and other automotive clean propulsion technologies;
  • Voice recognition and other connected-vehicle technologies;
  • Advanced steels, aluminums, carbon fiber and other advanced materials that can maker vehicles stronger and lighter;
  • Advanced sensors, memory and processors, especially for use in autonomous driving technology; and
  • Technologies that can improve manufacturing efficiency.

“These are areas where we expect significant breakthroughs and if you can get an advantage it will give you a solid leg up” on competitors such as Ford or Toyota, Lauckner emphasized.

Not surprisingly, the executive declined to discuss what new start-ups he might be eyeing for future investments but he noted that besides Silicon Valley he’s watching potential prospects in places like Germany and in Israel, where Powermat Technologies, the maker of the in-vehicle charging technology, is based.

Unlike most venture capital firms, which simply hope to get in early with their investments, nurture a firm and then sell off their stake for a big windfall, GM Ventures has a dual purpose. It also looks for start-ups that could help it improve the cars its parent builds.

Rhode Island’s NanoSteel is developing a new way to produce the time-tested metal in ways that can make it not only stronger but light enough to compete with light but far more costly aluminum or carbon fiber for producing vehicle platforms and bodies.

Of all the firms GM Ventures has invested in, none have yet reached the stage they can go public, thugh Lauckner hinted Powermat is furthest along.

“We haven’t had an exit yet,” Lauckner said, hinting that, “Hopefully we’ll get an exit in the not-to-distant future.”

Among the many areas that both GM Ventures and General Motors itself are watching closely, there’s a particular interest in electrification.  During last week’s 2-day media briefing, GM’s global product development director Mary Barra said the maker expects to have about 500,000 battery-based vehicles on the road by 2017, and “Plug-based solutions will play a significant role in our technology portfolio going forward,” she emphasized.

At the upcoming LA Auto Show, GM will introduce the Chevrolet Spark EV, its first battery-electric vehicle since the EV1 was pulled from production in 1999. Meanwhile, it will add another plug-in hybrid model next year, the Cadillac ELR sharing the basic “Voltec” drive system first introduced in the Chevy Volt.

The challenge, according to Lauckner, is to find batteries that deliver “higher performance at lower cost.” But he cautioned that the industry is likely to see current lithium-ion battery technology evolve rather than experience a major revolutionary breakthrough – at least in the near-term.

Currently, he noted, makers like GM are spending about $300 to $400 per kilowatt-hour – a figure that doesn’t include the hefty, additional costs of producing a climate-controlled battery pack.  Eventually, the Department of Energy expects that to drop to $125 – even as batteries get smaller, lighter and more powerful. But that’s a long-term goal, Lauckner cautioned. “Probably within the next five years,” he suggested, something in the $200 to $300 range is more likely.

Electric propulsion, he contended, is a game of slow improvements, each new generation getting a bit better than before – though he also added that, “I’d bet there’s a good chance you’ll see another (alternative) besides lithium-ion in use by 2025,” possibly something like the metal-air battery technologies still relegated to the research labs.

But 2025 is a long way off. And that is a key reason why GM Ventures is also investing in conventional gasoline technologies which, said Lauckner, “is still part of the game.”

 

Original Link

Proterra to explore overseas markets

November 21, 2012

 

Proterra
 

Proterra, the Greenville-based maker of battery-powered transit buses, will begin exploring overseas markets now that it has secured another $23 million from investors, its chief executive said.

Proterra said its latest financing round was led by Hennessey Capital Management, a San Francisco-based venture capital firm, which got a seat on the board in return for its investment.

Another new investor, NMT Capital, participated in the financing round, as did five other companies that had earlier put $30 million into Proterra, the company announced.

David Bennett, Proterra’s chief executive officer, said Kleiner Perkins, a California venture capital firm, and GM Ventures, the venture capital arm of General Motors Co., remain Proterra’s two largest investors.

Bennett said Proterra will use the cash infusion to invest in product quality and reliability, for next-generation product offerings and to open markets outside of the United States.

The startup company’s work force has grown from 30 employees to the current 175 since it moved to Greenville from Golden, Colo., in 2010.

Bennett told GreenvilleOnline.com he expects to hire another five to 15 workers by the end of the year.

Proterra is the Upstate’s second vehiclemaker after BMW Manufacturing Co. in Greer and one of only a handful of companies in the world that makes a battery-powered transit bus.

So far, Proterra has logged 20 sales or pending sales of its all-electric, zero-emission EcoRide bus to transit agencies in Seneca, California, Florida, Texas and Massachusetts.

Bennett said Proterra is talking to customers about buying more than 70 other EcoRides.

In addition, he said, Proterra has sold, or is on track to sell, another five buses powered by a combination of fuel cells and batteries.

Proterra hit a financial crisis in late 2010 after the Securities and Exchange Commission took action against the Michael Kenwood Group, a Connecticut investment firm that had put $20 million into the company.

Proterra was rescued in the summer of 2011 with the $30 million cash infusion from Kleiner Perkins, GM Ventures, Mitsui & Co. Ltd, Vision Ridge Partners and 88 Green Ventures LLC.

Proterra’s new board member, Rajiv Ghatalia, president and founder of Hennessey Capital Management LLC, worked for Goldman Sachs and Warburg Pincus in Asia, according to a Proterra news release.

NMT Capital, formerly called Nexus Medical Partners, is a Boston-area venture capital firm that has invested in many South Carolina companies, including Lab21, a British medical diagnostics firm whose U.S. subsidiary is based in Greenville, and American Titanium Works, a startup that plans a titanium mill near Laurens.

 

Link to original story

GM Ventures makes 2nd investment in battery-electric bus company

November 21, 2012

 

GM Ventures, the venture capital arm of General Motors Co. created in 2010, has invested for the second time in Proterra Inc., a Greenville, S.C.-based company that makes a battery-electric, fast-charge bus.

GM Ventures and six other companies invested a total of $23 million in a new round of financing for Proterra, the bus manufacturer said Tuesday. GM Ventures' investment was not disclosed. Other investors included new partners Hennessey Capital Management LLC and NMT Capital, plus existing investors Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Mitsui & Co. Global Investment Inc., 88 Green Ventures and Vision Ridge Partners.

Proterra plans to use the new cash infusion to grow delivery of its battery-electric EcoRide buses to new customers and markets. The EcoRide can complete a fast charge in 10 minutes and has up to 40 miles of range. Proterra said it has seven transit authority customers, up from two over the past 18 months.

In 2011, GM's venture capital arm invested $6 million into Proterra, as part of $30 million Proterra raised.

GM Ventures, which invests in startup companies developing auto-related technologies, is focusing its investments in five areas: automotive cleantech such as batteries or motors; connected-vehicle devices such as voice recognition or integrating personal devices into a car; advanced materials such as for weight savings; sensors, processors and memory that help aid in things such as autonomous driving; and manufacturing technologies that improve efficiency and productivity.

"Technology is evolving really, really rapidly in automotive today," Jon Lauckner, GM's chief technology officer and president of GM Ventures, said last week at a media dinner in San Francisco.

GM on Tuesday declined to provide how many companies GM Ventures has invested in, or how much of its $100 million in funding it has infused into the companies. In June 2011, The Detroit News reported GM Ventures had spent $36 million.

"We haven't had an exit yet," Lauckner said last week, referring to an exit as a portfolio company being acquired or going through an initial public offering of stock. "Hopefully we'll get an exit in the not-to-distant future."

Lauckner said it's possible one of its first exits could be Powermat Technologies, an Israel-based firm working to develop technology so drivers could charge cellphones and other like-devices by placing them on a charging mat. GM Ventures said in January 2011 it had invested $5 million in Powermat.

mburden@detnews.com

(313) 222-2319



From The Detroit News: http://www.detroitnews.com/article/20121120/AUTO0103/211200440#ixzz2CsgfiVjo

Space Coast leaders tryout electric bus

November 16, 2012

 

By Marjorie Sturgeon

Top leaders at the Kennedy Space Center and state and local officials got a look at the latest in green transportation Wednesday.

They took a ride on an electric-powered bus called EcoRide, in a preview organized by the Space Coast Energy Consortium.

The bus would save NASA’s Kennedy Space Center on fuel and maintenance costs, while eliminating pollution, according to a statement from KSC.

In that statement, officials said they don’t operate a busing system right now, but the center is big enough that a  route could be possible.

The company that developed the bus, Proterra, said the bus can be charged in under 10 minutes.

Link to original story: http://cfnews13.com/content/news/cfnews13/news/article.html/content/news/articles/cfn/2012/11/15/space_coast_leaders_.html

Electric Bus Quietly Tours Kennedy

November 14, 2012

 

 
 

Feature

 
 
 
Electric Bus Quietly Tours Kennedy
11.14.12
 
 
The Proterra electric busImage above: Proterra brought one of its EcoRide electric buses to Kennedy to show the vehicle to center, state and local officials during a tour of the facility. Image credit: NASA/Kim Shiflett
› View larger image
 


A new bus made an unusual impression on officials at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida recently when the all-electric vehicle carried a contingent of center, state and local officials on a tour of NASA's launch site. 

Driving around the Vehicle Assembly Building, the bus made so little noise it couldn't be picked out from among the ambient sounds outside the facility.

"Your first impression will be that it's not even on, that it's not even running," Proterra engineer Joel Torr told the group just before they climbed aboard for the ride. "People aren't used to this big, quiet, clean bus. It's very strange compared to what's out there."

Perhaps the most exciting aspect of the vehicle, though, is the prospect of saving fuel and maintenance costs while operating a bus that produces no emissions.

"We are actively promoting the use of alternative fuel vehicles when possible," said John Thiers of the center's Operations directorate.

The fleet of vehicles operated at Kennedy has been progressing toward a greater share of alternatively fueled transportation for a number of years as more options have become available. 

Electric, natural gas and ethanol-powered cars share Kennedy's sprawling networks of roads - the center covers 144,000 acres, after all – with gasoline-fueled vehicles comfortably.

This was the first time an electric bus has been offered, though. Space Coast Energy Consortium arranged the visit which included officials from Florida and local county organizations, plus industry representatives including General Motors.

Greenville, S.C.-based Proterra developed the bus, called the EcoRide, and say it stands as the only all-electric bus to pass a rigorous vehicular stress test known as "Altoona" that simulates years of use over the course of 15,000 miles.

"We're the only battery electric bus to do that," said Dale Hill, founder of Proterra. "You're trying to break the bus. We actually drove the bus nearly 500 miles in one 24-hour period."

The bus charges in 10 minutes and can run for 30 miles before it has to be recharged, the company said. That rate was improved during the Kennedy tour, though, when the bus drove 30 miles on a third of its charge.

Cities that have bought electric buses use them on circular routes, providing mass transit for a metro area. That way, the buses always have charging stations nearby.

Kennedy does not operate a route bus now, but is large enough for its workforce to use a vehicle to travel between widely spaced work areas, so there is a chance the electric bus could make a route around the center possible, economical and environmentally friendly.

The Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex, which is operated by Delaware North, had a representative at the meeting. The visitor complex uses tour buses to move visitors between the complex's main location and numerous stops on the center, including the Apollo/Saturn V Center.

Hill said the company is seeing increased demand across-the-board for an electric bus.

"It took about 10 years for the hybrid-electric bus market to come out" Hill said. "(The all-electric bus) market has taken off in something like two years." 


 
 
Steven Siceloff
NASA's John F. Kennedy Space Center
 
 

Proterra Electric Transit Bus Meets Altoona Benchmarks

October 15, 2012

 

Proterra says its EcoRide BE35 battery-electric bus has passed the Federal Transit Administration's Altoona bus testing, which simulates 12 years of vehicle life to ensure reliability and in-service performance. The EcoRide BE35 had an average fuel economy of 22 mpge and noise rating of 57 dBA during testing.
 
"The fact that a full-size electric bus has passed Altoona testing can be a true game-changer for American commuting and transportation by providing a 'greener' option for the masses," says David Bennett, CEO of Proterra.
 
The 35-foot-long buses are made of lightweight composite materials and can recharge in less than 10 minutes, according to Proterra.
 
To view original link: http://www.ngtnews.com/e107_plugins/content/content.php?content.8173

StarMetro To Add All-Electric, Zero-Emission Buses to City Fleet

October 15, 2012

Click here to find out more!

Tallahassee, FL - StarMetro customers may soon be getting around town using all-electric, zero-emission buses. Last week, the Federal Transit Administration upped its award to StarMetro for the Transit Investments for Greenhouse Gas and Energy Reduction (TIGGER) II grant by $2 million dollars. This increase gives StarMetro a total of $7 million dollars to purchase five new clean, green buses and to construct a charging station.

Last year, StarMetro signed a contract with Proterra, Inc. for the production of these buses.

“As diesel fuel prices steadily increase, renewable and sustainable transportation alternatives, such as the Proterra electric bus, provide a transportation solution that is not only clean, but reduces fuel costs over the life of the bus by as much as 80 percent,” said Ron Garrison, executive director of StarMetro. “We are proud to be on the cutting edge of technology, changing the transportation industry to better serve our loyal customers and keep our impact on the environment to a minimum.”

StarMetro is the first transit agency in the state of Florida to offer this innovative technology in its fleet and one of the first in the United States. Only two other transit agencies in the country offer these types of buses.

“With the addition of these brand new all-electric, zero emission buses, StarMetro customers will be the first on the east coast to experience this revolutionary technology,” said Mayor John Marks. “We can all be proud that Tallahassee is number one when it comes to sustainability and innovation.”

StarMetro expects to have its first all-electric bus in service next spring.

###

For more information about StarMetro services, please call StarMetro’s main office at 891-5200 or visit Talgov.com/starmetro. Other ways to view information include liking StarMetro’s official Facebook page at Facebook.com/starmetrotransit or following the organization on Twitter at Twitter.com/ridestarmetro.


To view original link: http://www.wctv.tv/news/headlines/StarMetro--174207591.html?ref=591

Proterra’s Gottschalk to Address International Renewable Energy Leaders at RETECH 2012

October 11, 2012

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                   
Agency contact:
JoAnne Laffey Abed, public relations manager
VantagePoint Marketing for Proterra
864.331.1265 or jabed@vantagep.com

Presentation to focus on future of renewable transit solutions

GREENVILLE, S.C.., October 11, 2012 – Proterra, the leading provider of zero-emission commercial transit solutions and maker of the world’s first battery-electric fast-charge transit bus, will discuss strategies for supporting growing ridership through the use of alternative fuels and technologies.  

RETECH, The Renewable Energy Technology Conference will showcase the latest renewable energy applications and technologies and bring together industry leaders from all 50 states and 60 countries with policy makers and government officials.  The conference will take place October 17-19 at the OMNI Shoreham in Washington, D.C.

Proterra’s Chief Business Development Officer and General Counsel, Marc Gottschalk, will be part of a panel discussion at 3:45 p.m. on October 18.  The panel will be focused on alternative fuels, clean transit acquisition strategies and the development of more sustainable transit programs.  Through his past role as an environmental lawyer and in his present capacity at Proterra, Gottschalk is one of a small inner circle in Silicon Valley who pioneered the U.S. cleantech sector and helped shape it into a new driver for global innovation and economic growth.

As the only United States-based manufacturer of zero-emissions battery-electric buses, Proterra has led the charge in the industry to not only introduce clean technology, but also to create a sustainable operating model to make this technology a more viable option to transit agencies across the country. In addition to adding zero emissions to the environment, offering the best fuel economy of any passenger bus and having the market’s lowest carbon footprint, Proterra’s battery-electric EcoRide™ is the quietest bus on the road, reducing noise pollution and creating a more positive urban environment.

The company’s buses have been specified in several recent Clean Fuel grant awards, and interest among transit agencies has continued to grow.

“Proterra’s EcoRide battery-electric buses have both the smallest carbon footprint on the market and the lowest total cost of ownership,” said Gottschalk.  “Many transit agencies know that EV is the future of transit, but with this combination of sustainability and cost-effectiveness, there’s no need to wait and see: the future is now.”

AboutProterra

With manufacturing in Greenville, S.C., Proterra is a leading designer and manufacturer of heavy-duty electric drive systems, energy storage systems, vehicle control systems, transit buses and fast-charging stations. Proterra’s systems are scalable to commercial buses of all sizes.  Its ground-up designs have led to the EcoRide, the world’s first full-size, 10-minute charge transit bus. While a young company, Proterra combines the best of start-up mentality and aggressiveness, combined with a highly talented and tenured team and the stability of a solid core of financial support from influential investors, such as Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, a leading Silicon Valley-based venture capital private equity firm; General Motors Ventures; Mitsui & Co. Global Investment, Inc., one of the largest investment firms in Japan; Vision Ridge Partners LLC, a Boston-based business that invests in transformative growth companies focused on sustainability; and 88 Green Ventures, an investment and asset management firm that assists emerging green companies. For more information on Proterra and its technology, please visit: www.proterra.com.

 

###

Proterra EcoRide electric bus passes federal testing, sets fuel economy and noise records

October 05, 2012

 

Proterra EcoRide electric bus passes federal testing, sets fuel economy and noise records

By
Charlie Morris
EST

 

South Carolina-based Proterra announced that its EcoRide BE35 battery-electric bus has become the first heavy-duty electric transit bus ever to pass the Federal Transit Administration’s Altoona bus testing, which simulates 12 years of vehicle life and provides a comparison of performance and reliability among different bus models. The new bus scored both the highest fuel economy (22 MPGe) and lowest noise (10 times lower, in fact) of any full-size passenger bus ever tested.

“Coming on the heels of greater overall consumer demand for more sustainable passenger car options, the fact that a full-size electric bus has passed Altoona testing can be a true game-changer for American commuting and transportation by providing a greener option for the masses,” said Proterra CEO David Bennett.

Proterra’s electric buses, one of which was featured in an episode of Jay Leno’s Garage, are designed from the ground up as EVs - they’re made of lightweight composite materials, and include a host of high-tech features, including an overhead fast charger that can charge the bus in 10 minutes, allowing it to operate 24 hours a day. They have been in service in Pomona, California for a year, and will soon be deployed in several other cities across the country.

Link to original story: http://www.chargedevs.com/content/news-wire/post/proterra-ecoride-electric-bus-passes-federal-testing-sets-fuel-economy-and

Proterra Founder Dale Hill Honored by Green Fleet Magazine as 2012 Sustainability All-Star

October 03, 2012

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                   
Agency contact:
JoAnne Laffey Abed, public relations manager
VantagePoint Marketing for Proterra
864.331.1265 or jabed@vantagep.com


GREENVILLE, S.C., October 3, 2012 – Proterra, the leading provider of zero-emission commercial transit solutions, is pleased to announce that the company’s founder, Dale Hill, has been named a 2012 Sustainability All-Star by Green Fleet magazine. This award recognizes individuals who have made significant contributions to environmental sustainability in the fleet industry. The award was announced on October 3 at the Green Fleet Conference in Schaumburg, Ill.

Green Fleet magazine staff reviewed nominees submitted online based on professional longevity, accomplishments (significant sustainability achievements), innovation (innovative ways individuals have contributed to reducing emissions and fuel consumption), and overall industry involvement to determine the elite group of award recipients.

“Altogether, these fleet professionals have reduced greenhouse gas emissions, created green fleet and sustainability policies, and have dedicated their time and energy to ensuring the path to sustainability is clear,” said Lauren Fletcher, managing editor, Green Fleet magazine.

With reduced fuel and maintenance costs, Proterra’s buses are an attractive option for areas looking to reduce their total cost of ownership and operating expenses.  The company’s buses have been or soon will be in operation in several cities throughout the country.

“As a committed and long-term advocate for clean technology and alternative energy sources, I created Proterra with the goal of making battery-electric, zero-emission transportation a reality and on educating the public and agencies on the importance of looking for a more sustainability-driven approach to mass transit,” said Dale Hill, founder, Proterra Inc.  “I am honored to be recognized as someone who has made a significant impact on an issue I care so deeply about.”

About Proterra

With manufacturing in Greenville, S.C., Proterra is a leading designer and manufacturer of heavy-duty electric drive systems, energy storage systems, vehicle control systems, transit buses and fast-charging stations. Proterra’s systems are scalable to commercial buses of all sizes.  Its ground-up designs have led to the EcoRide, the world’s first full-size, 10-minute charge transit bus. The 35-foot long buses are made of lightweight composite materials and are powered with state of the art battery technology. As a result, the buses have zero emissions, run virtually silent and are 500 percent more fuel efficient than diesel buses. While a young company, Proterra combines the best of start-up mentality and aggressiveness, combined with a highly talented and tenured team and the stability of a solid core of financial support from influential investors, such as Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, a leading Silicon Valley-based venture capital private equity firm; General Motors Ventures; Mitsui & Co. Global Investment, Inc., one of the largest investment firms in Japan; Vision Ridge Partners LLC, a Boston-based business that invests in transformative growth companies focused on sustainability; and 88 Green Ventures, an investment and asset management firm that assists emerging green companies. For more information on Proterra and its technology, please visit: www.proterra.com.

Proterra battery-electric bus passes Altoona testing

October 02, 2012

 

Proterra’s  EcoRide BE35 battery-electric bus has become the first heavy-duty electric transit bus to pass the Federal Transit Administration’s Altoona bus testing, according to the company.

Conducted through the Larson Institute at Pennsylvania State University, Altoona testing simulates the use and strain a bus will undergo during its 12-year durable life. The testing is required on all new model buses before they can be purchased with federal funds.

In addition to being the first heavy-duty electric transit bus to pass, the EcoRide BE35 is also the first zero-emissions full-size bus to pass Altoona and was proven to have both the highest fuel economy (22 mpg average) and lowest noise (57 dBA or 10 times lower) of any full-size passenger bus ever tested, officials said.

Testing revealed no Class One failures (those endangering physical safety of passengers) and a limited number of more minor failures, such as broken pins and mountings, all of which have been addressed and resolved through Fall 2012 production.

“Transit agencies across the country now have a viable, proven and tested option for markedly improving the sustainability of their fleets while reducing their total cost of ownership, opening a new world of possibility for them,” said Proterra CEO David Bennett.  “These test results, combined with Proterra’s efforts to advance technology to reduce the cost of the bus make the EcoRide BE35 the best transit bus option on the market, and we expect that burgeoning interest will snowball rapidly.”

Proterra’s EcoRide BE35 battery-electric buses recharge in less than 10 minutes, ready to serve the community with clean electric powered bus service as a direct replacement for existing diesel and CNG buses.

The 35-foot long buses are made of lightweight composite materials and are powered with state-of-the-art battery technology.  As a result, the buses have zero emissions, run virtually silent and are 600% more fuel efficient than diesel buses.

“Most transit agencies recognize the need to seek more fuel-efficient and environmentally friendly vehicle options, but many have held off on moving forward with the newest electric bus options until the technology has been adequately tested,” said Donna DeMartino, General Manager/CEO, San Joaquin Regional Transit District (RTD). “RTD is proud to be an early adopter of Proterra’s battery-electric technology, which will allow us to be more sustainability-driven while reducing our total cost of ownership over time.”

The company’s buses have been or soon will be in operation in the following cities: Austin, Texas; Burbank, Calif.; Columbia, S.C.; Fort Lewis, Wash.; Pomona, Calif.; San Antonio, Texas; Tallahassee, Fla.; Seneca, S.C. and Stockton, Calif.

To view original link: http://www.metro-magazine.com/News/Story/2012/10/Battery-electric-bus-passes-Altoona-testing.aspx

Proterra’s EcoRide

October 01, 2012

Proterra's EcoRide(TM) BE35 First Full-Size Battery-Electric Transit Bus Ever to Pass Stringent Federal Testing for Long-Term Performance, Viability
Honors include highest fuel economy of any full-size passenger bus ever tested, opening a host of green transportation opportunities

GREENVILLE, S.C., Oct. 1, 2012 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ -- Proterra, the leading provider of zero-emission commercial transit solutions, is proud to announce that its EcoRide(TM) BE35 battery-electric bus has become the first heavy-duty electric transit bus ever to pass the Federal Transit Administration's Altoona bus testing. Testing simulates 12 years of vehicle life and ensures reliability and in-service performance of transit buses by providing an unbiased and accurate comparison of bus models.

The EcoRide BE35 is also the first zero-emissions full-size bus to pass Altoona and was proven to have both the highest fuel economy (22 mpg average) and lowest noise (57 dBA or 10 times lower) of any full-size passenger bus ever tested.

While CNG buses are currently more common in the marketplace, the battery-electric option is truly zero-emissions, more fuel-efficient, quieter and can be powered by a wider range of energy sources.

"Coming on the heels of greater overall consumer demand for more sustainable passenger car options, the fact that a full-size electric bus has passed Altoona testing can be a true game-changer for American commuting and transportation by providing a 'greener' option for the masses," said Proterra CEO David Bennett.

Proterra is the only U.S.-based manufacturer of clean technology, 100 percent battery-electric heavy-duty transit buses. The company's EcoRide(TM) BE35 battery-electric buses recharge in less than 10 minutes, ready to serve the community with clean electric powered bus service as a direct replacement for existing diesel and CNG buses. The 35-foot long buses are made of lightweight composite materials and are powered with state-of-the-art battery technology. The buses have zero emissions, run virtually silent and are more than 500 percent more fuel efficient than diesel buses. The company's buses have been or soon will be in operation in the following cities: Austin, Texas; Burbank, Calif.; Columbia, S.C.; Fort Lewis, Wash.; Pomona, Calif.; San Antonio, Texas; Tallahassee, Fla.; Seneca, S.C. and Stockton, Calif.

About Proterra With manufacturing in Greenville, S.C., Proterra is a leading designer and manufacturer of heavy-duty electric drive systems, energy storage systems, vehicle control systems, transit buses and fast-charging stations. Proterra's systems are scalable to commercial buses of all sizes. Its ground-up designs have led to the EcoRide, the world's first full-size, 10-minute charge transit bus. Proterra is funded by a solid core of influential investors, such as Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers and General Motors Ventures. For more information on Proterra and its technology, please visit: www.proterra.com .

SOURCE Proterra

Copyright (C) 2012 PR Newswire. All rights reserved

 

For original story: http://www.marketwatch.com/story/proterras-ecoridetm-be35-first-full-size-battery-electric-transit-bus-ever-to-pass-stringent-federal-testing-for-long-term-performance-viability-2012-10-01

Proterra’S EcoRide™ BE35 First Battery-Electric Transit Bus Ever to Pass Stringent Federal Testi

October 01, 2012

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                   

Agency contact:
JoAnne Laffey Abed, public relations manager
VantagePoint Marketing for Proterra
864.331.1265 or jabed@vantagep.com

Proterra’S EcoRide™ BE35 First Heavy-Duty Battery-Electric Transit Bus Ever to Pass Stringent Federal Testing for Long-Term Performance, Viability

Honors include highest fuel economy, lowest noise levels of any full-size passenger bus ever tested

GREENVILLE, S.C., October 1, 2012 – Proterra, the leading provider of zero-emission commercial transit solutions, is proud to announce that its EcoRide™ BE35 battery-electric bus has become the first heavy-duty electric transit bus ever to pass the Federal Transit Administration’s Altoona bus testing. Conducted through the Larson Institute at Pennsylvania State University, Altoona testing ensures reliability and in-service performance of transit buses by providing an unbiased and accurate comparison of bus models through the use of an established set of test procedures.  Testing, which simulates the use and strain a bus will undergo during its 12 year durable life, is required on all new model buses before they can be purchased with federal funds.

In addition to being the first heavy-duty electric transit bus, the EcoRide BE35 is also the first zero-emissions full-size bus to pass Altoona and was proven to have both the highest fuel economy (22 mpg average) and lowest noise (57 dBA or 10 times lower) of any full-size passenger bus ever tested.

Testing revealed no Class One failures (those endangering physical safety of passengers) and a limited number of more minor failures, such as broken pins and mountings, all of which have been addressed and resolved through Fall 2012 production.

 “Of course this is fantastic news for Proterra, but, more importantly, the fact that a full-size battery-electric bus has passed Altoona is perhaps one of the biggest advancements in the history of the transportation industry.” said Proterra CEO David Bennett. “Transit agencies across the country now have a viable, proven and tested option for markedly improving the sustainability of their fleets while reducing their total cost of ownership, opening a new world of possibility for them. These test results, combined with Proterra’s efforts to advance technology to reduce the cost of the bus make the EcoRide BE35 the best transit bus option on the market, and we expect that burgeoning interest will snowball rapidly.”

Proterra is the only U.S.-based manufacturer of clean technology, 100 percent battery-electric heavy-duty transit buses.  The company’s EcoRide™ BE35 battery-electric buses recharge in less than 10 minutes, ready to serve the community with clean electric powered bus service as a direct replacement for existing diesel and CNG buses.  The 35-foot long buses are made of lightweight composite materials and are powered with state-of-the-art battery technology.  As a result, the buses have zero emissions, run virtually silent and are 600 percent more fuel efficient than diesel buses. The company’s buses have been or soon will be in operation in the following cities: Austin, Texas; Burbank, Calif.; Columbia, S.C.; Fort Lewis, Wash.; Pomona, Calif.; San Antonio, Texas; Tallahassee, Fla.; Seneca, S.C. and Stockton, Calif.

“Most transit agencies recognize the need to seek more fuel-efficient and environmentally friendly vehicle options, but many have held off on moving forward with the newest electric bus options until the technology has been adequately tested,” said Donna DeMartino, General Manager/CEO, San Joaquin Regional Transit District (RTD). “RTD is proud to be an early adopter of Proterra’s battery-electric technology, which will allow us to be more sustainability-driven while reducing our total cost of ownership over time.  We believe that the results of this stringent Altoona testing will open a new world of possibilities for other interested transit agencies and give them the assurance they need to purchase Proterra buses.”

Committed to helping the United States achieve energy independence, Proterra is proud to be headquartered and have bus manufacturing located in Greenville, S.C.  Proterra also leads the industry with more than 80 percent of the content and components for its EcoRide buses sourced in the United States – from 33 of the 50 states.

About Altoona Testing

The Bus Testing Program of the Federal Transit Administration was established in response to the requirements of the Surface Transportation and Uniform Relocation Assistance Act (STURAA) of 1987. Under the program, testing is required on all new model buses before they can be purchased with federal funds. The testing mandated by STURAA and the vehicle categories included were expanded by the Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act (ISTEA) in 1991. Testing is performed by the Vehicle Systems and Safety Program staff at the Altoona Bus Research and Testing Center in Altoona, Pennsylvania. The Center currently handles up to eight buses at one time. During the course of testing, most maintenance and repairs are performed by the Center's staff. As of June 30, 2010, testing has been completed on 358 buses. Over the course of testing thus far, Center staff identified more than 8,363 malfunctions, resulting in many design changes.

 

AboutProterra

With manufacturing in Greenville, S.C., Proterra is a leading designer and manufacturer of heavy-duty electric drive systems, energy storage systems, vehicle control systems, transit buses and fast-charging stations. Proterra’s systems are scalable to commercial buses of all sizes.  Its ground-up designs have led to the EcoRide, the world’s first full-size, 10-minute charge transit bus. While a young company, Proterra combines the best of start-up mentality and aggressiveness, combined with a highly talented and tenured team and the stability of a solid core of financial support from influential investors, such as Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, a leading Silicon Valley-based venture capital private equity firm; General Motors Ventures; Mitsui & Co. Global Investment, Inc., one of the largest investment firms in Japan; Vision Ridge Partners LLC, a Boston-based business that invests in transformative growth companies focused on sustainability; and 88 Green Ventures, an investment and asset management firm that assists emerging green companies. For more information on Proterra and its technology, please visit: www.proterra.com.


Proterra completes key tests that should help market buses, officials say

October 01, 2012

Energy efficient joy ride: A demo ride on a Proterra bus with CEO David Bennett

Written by
Rudolph Bell
Staff Writer

Proterra, the Greenville-based maker of battery-powered transit buses, heads into the industry’s annual trade show with news that its EcoRide BE35 has completed necessary federal testing.

The startup company had to put its bus through the gauntlet at the Altoona Bus Research and Testing Center in Pennsylvania in order to sell the product to transit agencies buying buses with federal funds.

Some Proterra customers, including the city of Seneca, made the testing a condition of their contracts, said David Bennett, Proterra’s chief executive.

The testing is “critically important to the company,” he said.

Proterra completed the testing in March, according to a report from the testing center, but the company’s official announcement is set for next week during the annual meeting of the American Public Transit Association in Seattle.

“The audience we have at APTA, this is the kind of information they’re really interested in,” Bennett said.

Proterra is the Upstate’s second vehicle maker after BMW Manufacturing Co. in Greer. It had 30 employees when it moved to Greenville in 2010 from Golden, Colo., and now employs 140.

The EcoRide’s transmission encountered numerous problems during the testing, according to the testing report, but Bennett said the results were “very strong” for a brand-new vehicle.

Proterra spent about a year designing a new transmission and no longer uses the supplier that made the transmission tested in Altoona, Bennett said.

No “Class 1” failures occurred during the testing, according to the report.

Sandy Hoover, office manager at the testing center, said buses don’t pass or fail the test. Rather, the testing produces data for potential buyers to consider.

“We are not allowed to comment on how the bus did,” Hoover said. “You look at the report and determine that for yourself.”

She said two other battery-powered buses completed testing at the center before Proterra.

But Bennett said those buses, made by E-Bus and AVS, were trolleys or smaller buses not meant to last 12 years in city driving like Proterra’s bus.

Proterra said the test results show its bus with the highest fuel economy — the equivalent of 22 miles per gallon — and the least noise of any bus ever tested at the center.


Link to original story: http://www.greenvilleonline.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2012309290014&nclick_check=1

SENECA LANDS $1.8 MILLION FOR ELECTRIC BUSES

September 28, 2012

 

 — The city of Seneca is $1.8 million closer to being the only city in the world with an all-electric, fare-free bus system.

The South Carolina Department of Transportation announced late Wednesday that Seneca will get $1,812,500 in a Federal Transit Administration discretionary grant funds for fiscal year 2012 to purchase two all-electric buses from the buses’ manufacturer, Greenville-based Proterra.

The switch to the all-electric buses will be fully implemented in 2013, according to Seneca officials.

Both Seneca and Proterra were honored in August at a White House ceremony highlighting the innovative thinking in public transportation combined with environment concerns and high technology.

“This will be Seneca’s opportunity to show the rest of the world how this system works,” Seneca city administrator Greg Dietterick said about the city’s plans. “We get to show the world that we care about the future of the planet, that we are using technology to reduce our carbon footprint through fuel costs and emissions. That is going to be huge for us here and we expect to showcase this transportation innovation with leaders from around the world.”

Seneca unveiled its plans in November 2011 with the announcement of $4.1 million in Federal Transit Administration funding to replace its three diesel-powered buses with all-electric vehicles.

The Seneca transit project was one of 46 approved by the Federal Transit Administration in fiscal year 2011 out of 166 applications.

The 35-foot buses take only 10 minutes to fully recharge exhausted batteries, according to Proterra officials.

The buses will be operated by the Clemson Area Transit system, which hauls an estimated 2 million passengers a year.

Through contracts with CAT, Seneca operates three bus routes, a business circular route and a residential circular route around town plus an express route that connects Seneca with Clemson. The Clemson connection indirectly links Seneca with four colleges, an Amtrak station and the Electric City Transit system of Anderson. Seneca also provides a fare-free service from the Highpointe residential and student housing complex to Clemson University.

 

Original Story Link: http://m.independentmail.com/news/2012/sep/27/seneca-lands-18-million-electric-buses/

Proterra to Provide Three EcoRide Zero-Emission Battery-Electric Transit Buses to WRTA

September 26, 2012

 

The Worcester (Mass.) Regional Transit Authority (WRTA) was recently awarded a $4.4 million Federal Transit Authority Clean Fuels grant to purchase buses from Proterra Inc, the leading provider of zero-emission commercial transit solutions. The transit authority will use the grant money to replace three of its twelve old diesel buses with Proterra's zero-emission all-electric transit buses.

The grant award, which was announced last week by U.S. Rep. James P. McGovern, U.S. Senator John Kerry and U.S. Senator Scott Brown, will also pay for the installation of a Proterra on-route Charge station at the WRTA's Union Station transfer center and a shop charger at the new maintenance and operations facility.

The WRTA estimates that replacing these three buses will eliminate 53 tons of harmful emissions and reduce petroleum consumption by more than 23,000 gallons per year, while reducing operating costs by more nearly $500,000.

Proterra's EcoRide BE35 battery-electric buses recharge in less than 10 minutes, ready to serve the community with clean electric powered bus service. The 35-foot long buses are made of lightweight composite materials and are powered with state of the art battery technology. As a result, the buses have zero emissions, run virtually silent and are 500 percent more fuel efficient than diesel buses.

"The WRTA is looking forward to introducing the new all-electric buses to enhance our fleet in keeping with the goals of doing our part to become a greener community," said WRTA administrator Stephen O'Neil. "The all-electric buses run quieter, cleaner and more efficiently than older model diesel buses and have been designed to improve air quality, reduce the WRTA's carbon footprint and the Agency's dependence on fossil fuel.

Other cities anticipated to roll-out Proterra buses in the next six months include Stockton, Calif.; San Antonio, Texas; Tallahassee, Fla. and Seneca, S.C.

"Proterra is proud to work with some of the most progressive transit agencies out there," said David Bennett, CEO, Proterra Inc. "These agencies understand the very real and positive bottom-line impact battery-electric buses can have on the environment and on their overall operating budgets. We are thrilled to add WRTA to our impressive and growing customer roster."

 
View original story at this link: http://www.masstransitmag.com/press_release/10784913/proterra-to-provide-three-ecoride-zero-emission-battery-electric-transit-buses-to-wrta

Proterra to provide three battery-electric transit buses to Worcester Regional Transit Authority

September 26, 2012

 

The Worcester (Mass.) Regional Transit Authority (WRTA) was recently awarded a $4.4-million Federal Transit Authority Clean Fuels grant to purchase buses from Proterra Inc. The transit authority will use the grant money to replace three of its twelve old diesel buses with Proterra’s all-electric BE-35 35-foot transit buses. (Earlier post.)

The grant award will also pay for the installation of a Proterra on-route charge station at the WRTA’s Union Station transfer center and a shop charger at the new maintenance and operations facility.

The WRTA estimates that replacing these three buses will eliminate 53 tons of harmful emissions and reduce petroleum consumption by more than 23,000 gallons per year, while reducing operating costs by more nearly $500,000.

Other cities anticipated to roll-out Proterra buses in the next six months include Stockton, Calif.; San Antonio, Texas; Tallahassee, Fla. and Seneca, S.C.

 

View original story at: http://www.greencarcongress.com/2012/09/proterra-20120926.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+greencarcongress%2FTrBK+(Green+Car+Congress)

TARC awarded $4.4 million grant for all-electric buses

September 21, 2012

All-electric buses with zero air polluting emissions will become part of Louisville’s public transportation fleet as a result of a $4.4 million federal grant awarded to TARC.

 “This puts TARC at the leading edge of high-technology, cleaner, greener buses,” said TARC Executive Director J. Barry Barker. “We can’t wait to get them on the road and we think passengers will love the ride.”  The grant, from the Federal Transit Administration Clean Fuels Program, will pay for five electric buses that will replace the oldest, high emissions trolleys now circulating downtown along Fourth Street and the Main-Market corridor. The electric buses are expected to be in operation in about a year.

Congressman John Yarmuth said he was proud to support the grant application and thrilled that TARC was successful in a highly competitive selection. Out of 146 grant applications totaling $516 million, the FTA selected 27 projects totaling $59.3 million.

“This federal investment in new technologies is not just about improving public transportation in Louisville; it is also a down payment on ensuring healthier, cleaner air, and a more energy independent future,” Yarmuth said.

Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer said all-electric buses “represent a game change for public transportation in downtown Louisville and the type of progress and forward-thinking focus we are embracing to improve our city.”

”The city’s historic replica “Toonerville” trolleys have helped downtown’s revitalization over the years and all-electric buses can help take us to the next level,” he said.

In a post about the grant awards on his blog, “FastLane,”, U.S. Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood called all-electric buses “cutting-edge, innovative” and “tailor-made for our 21st century energy future.”

TARC’s 14 diesel-fueled trolleys are the least environmentally friendly vehicles in the fleet. They average 14 years of age and 500,000 miles of service, have high maintenance costs and cannot be replaced because they are no longer manufactured.

“The air quality improvements with the electric vehicles will be significant,” Barker said. For example, the five oldest trolleys combined now emit a total of about 1,135 pounds of carbon monoxide in a year, compared to zero emissions from the all-electric buses.

The electric buses will also save TARC thousands of dollars each year in lower operating costs. In fuel costs alone, each electric bus will save TARC an estimated $10,000 per year. The electric buses are also significantly less expensive to maintain than trolleys.

Barker said electric bus technology has been tested and proven reliable. One type of electric bus manufactured in South Carolina can travel 30 miles on a fullycharged battery and can be recharged in 10 minutes at an on-route charging station.

The FTA said it awarded grants based on a project’s ability to help communities achieve federal air quality standards while supporting emerging clean fuel and advanced propulsion technologies for transit buses.

Under previous federal grants, TARC also will add 39 new buses to replace old buses now operating throughout TARC’s five-county service area. The new buses will include 28 diesel buses with the latest air quality and fuel conserving technology and 11 hybrid-electric buses. The buses are scheduled to begin arriving this spring.

 

Click here to view original link: http://www.ridetarc.org/InternalOneColumn.aspx?id=952

Metro test drives zero-emission bus

September 20, 2012

 

Cincinnati Metro Looking For Ways to Go Green: Video Link
 

CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19)- Metro's operations team gave the Proterra electric bus a test drive on Tuesday.

The zero-emission bus was manufactured in South Carolina and offers many green benefits. The bus is quiet and doesn't use diesel fuel which could result in a saving of more than $300,000 over the life of the bus. It can travel about 40 miles before recharging and only takes about 10 minutes to recharge. Also, more than 80 percent of the parts are made in the United States.

Metro says there are no immediate plans to buy this bus, but they are reviewing the innovate technology to learn more about its possible uses.

View original story here: http://downtown-mtauburn.fox19.com/news/news/97700-metro-test-drives-zero-emission-bus

Metro takes a look at this quick charging electric bus

September 18, 2012

 

 

Metro is getting a first hand look at what manufacturers say is the fastest charging electric bus. Founder of Proterra Dale Hill says it can fully charge in about 10 minutes enabling the bus to go 40 miles. 


"People are much more aware of transit today. They want quiet. They want clean. They want comfort."


Hill says this zero-emissions bus costs about 900-thousand dollars. That's comparable to the cost of a diesel bus and its fuel. Metro's Sallie Hilvers says it would be a year or more before it could apply for federal grants to buy such a bus.


"So this is a technology that is a kind of forward thinking technology, one that Metro is a least exploring at this point. We haven't placed an order or anything of that nature. But it is something we are looking at to make sure it could be accommodating to our hills in Cincinnati, again something for the future to consider."


Soon Louisville will be getting a fleet of Proterra buses. 

 

See original article at the following link: http://wvxu.org/post/metro-takes-look-quick-charging-electric-bus

Proterra Hires Additional Regional Sales Director

September 12, 2012

 

 

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE              

 

Agency contact:
JoAnne Laffey Abed, public relations manager
Vantage Point Marketing for Proterra
864.331.1265 or jabed@vantagep.com

Greenville, S.C. | September 12, 2012 – Proterra, the leading maker of zero-emission commercial transit solutions, is pleased to announce that it has expanded its sales team with the addition of Joe Lunny as a regional sales director.  Lunny will have primary responsibility for increasing the company’s sales and market share in the Southeastern United States.

Lunny comes to Proterra with more than 30 years of sales experience in the bus and trucking industry, including time spent with Transit Properties and New Flyer.  While at Transit Properties, he served as the vice president of sales and marketing for two bus dealerships, as well as the CEO of the first commercial-only Blue Bird bus dealership in New England.  At New Flyer, he held the position of southeastern regional sales manager.

“While we are a young company, Proterra continues to hire very experienced industry veterans like Joe for key roles,” said David Bennett, chief executive Officer, Proterra Inc. “Our company and our customers will benefit greatly from Joe’s deep expertise and industry savvy, and we are thrilled to welcome him onboard.”

AboutProterra

With manufacturing in Greenville, S.C., Proterra Inc is a leading designer and manufacturer of heavy-duty electric drive systems, energy storage systems, vehicle control systems, transit buses and fast-charging stations. Proterra’s systems are scalable to commercial buses of all sizes.  Its ground-up designs have led to the EcoRide™, the world’s first full-size, 10-minute-charge transit bus. For more information on Proterra and its technology, please visit www.proterra.com.

 

###

Proterra Battery-Electric Bus to Demo at Republican National Convention

August 27, 2012

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 
Agency contact:
JoAnne Laffey Abed, public relations manager
VantagePoint Marketing for Proterra
864.331.1265or jabed@vantagep.com                                                                                                            

GREENVILLE, S.C., - August 27, 2012 – Proterra, the leading provider of zero-emission commercial transit solutions, will display the EcoRide™ BE35 battery-electric bus at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, FL on August 27-30 as well as the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, NC on September 3-6, demonstrating the importance and future of clean energy technology.

Government groups are highly interested in battery-electric transit buses as fuel prices continue to surge higher and communities face mounting cost pressures and a desire or requirement to reduce their carbon footprint. Proterra has answered the call through their advanced technology that reduces overall cost of ownership and is truly zero-emissions.

Proterra was recently awarded the White House’s Champion of Change Award for Transportation Innovation. Proterra was honored for leading viable transportation initiatives that promote and facilitate economic growth and job creation, implementing environmentally friendly and sustainable transportation systems and services, and developing state-of-the-art technologies that are critical to improving the efficiency and effectiveness of transportation systems.

With reduced fuel and maintenance costs, Proterra’s buses are an attractive option for areas looking to reduce their total cost of ownership and operating expenses.  The company’s buses have been or soon will be in operation in the following cities: Austin, Texas; Burbank, Calif.; Columbia, S.C.; Fort Lewis, Wash.; Pomona, Calif.; San Antonio, Texas; Tallahassee, Fla.; Seneca, S.C.  and Stockton, Calif.

David Bennett, CEO, Proterra Inc. said,“Having recently been honored as a Champion of Change in Transportation, working closely with our South Carolina Congressional delegation and now being asked to showcase our technology at the Republican and Democratic National Conventions, we are pleased with the support from both political parties for cost effective, clean transportation technology”

 

AboutProterra

With manufacturing in Greenville, S.C., Proterra is a leading designer and manufacturer of heavy-duty electric drive systems, energy storage systems, vehicle control systems, transit buses and fast-charging stations. Proterra’s systems are scalable to commercial buses of all sizes.  Its ground-up designs have led to the EcoRide, the world’s first full-size, 10-minute charge transit bus. For more information on Proterra and its technology, please visit: www.proterra.com.

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Jay Leno’s latest toy - Proterra’s electric bus

August 15, 2012

 

By
Charlie Morris
EST

 

Jay gets to play with all the coolest toys - he’s tested lots of EVs, from SUVs to roadsters tomotorcycles. The latest episode of Jay Leno’s Garage features a hot rod for public transport buffs - the Proterra Ecoliner electric bus. Designed from the ground up as an EV, the new bus has been in service for Foothills Transit in Pomona, California for a year. The agency’s director gives Jay a complete demonstration.

One of the most innovative features is an overhead fast charger, which can charge the bus in about 10 minutes, allowing it to operate 24 hours a day. The concept is similar to a system that recently went into service in Sweden. However, the Swedes use a retractable “pantograph,” like those used by trains and trams, while Pomona’s Proterra has a special charging head that retracts into the overhead unit.

Buses have come a long way from their horse-drawn origins. This one is loaded with high-tech features, including GPS, DVR-equipped security cameras, and a “people counter” that automatically keeps track of passengers as they board. The body is made of a fiberglass and balsa wood composite developed by the navy - it’s far lighter than an old-fashioned steel bus, but strong enough to shrug off a collision with a car.

 

To view original article: http://www.chargedevs.com/content/news-wire/post/video-jay-lenos-latest-toy-proterras-electric-bus

White House Recognizes ‘Champions of Change’

August 15, 2012

 

NEWS HEADLINES
 

DOT Secretary Ray LaHood and modal administrators gathered Aug. 1 in Washington, DC, to recognize 14 transportation professionals as White House Champions of Change.

Five of the honorees are APTA members: Beverly A. Scott, Ph.D.; Phillip A. Washington; Roaring Fork Transportation Authority (RFTA), Aspen, CO; Proterra, Greenville, SC; and Dan Richard.

“We’ve accomplished a lot at DOT in the past few years, but we did not do it alone,” LaHood said at the event. “In communities across the country, we have found bold, innovative leaders who have taken up the important cause of changing the way we think about transportation and have created jobs in the process. These Champions are making a difference every day in their local communities and across the country. And, thanks to them, it is a new day for transportation in America.”

“Meeting our nation’s transportation challenges requires innovative thinking and the leadership skills to translate plans and dreams into greater mobility, better jobs, and more livable communities,” he continued. “And that is exactly what these Champions of Change have demonstrated—each and every one.”

Scott, honored in the public transportation category, is general manager/chief executive officer, Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority (MARTA), and a past APTA chair. She has worked for more than 30 years as a public transit executive: in Atlanta since 2007 and earlier in Sacramento, New York, New Jersey, Houston, and Rhode Island.

“At MARTA,” she said, “we have done our level best over the past several years to be good regional partners; to be open and transparent in our decision making; to take the actions needed to be responsible public stewards; and to be respectful, but unafraid, to make our case and speak truth to power.”

Washington is general manager, Regional Transportation District (RTD), Denver, CO, and an at-large member of the APTA Executive Committee. He was honored in the transportation workforce development category for his work with the Eagle Public-Private Partnership (P3) project, which includes implementation of the Workforce Initiative Now (WIN) program created by RTD.

With the help of financial and legal advisors, the agency brought the project from concept to contract in three years, incorporating design, building, financing, operating, and maintaining for two complete commuter rail lines; a segment of another rail line; a commuter rail maintenance facility; and supplying the commuter rail vehicles needed for Eagle P3. WIN identifies, assesses, trains, and places community members, including military veterans, into careers in transportation and mixed-use development projects.

RFTA was recognized in the Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) in rural America category for VelociRFTA, its pioneering rural BRT system currently under construction. Jackie Whitsitt, mayor of Basalt, CO, who accepted on behalf of the authority, explained that the system will cover 42 miles and bring together the towns of Glenwood Springs, Carbondale, El Jebel, Basalt, and Aspen, using buses powered with compressed natural gas.

“We were determined to help our community with their lengthy commutes to work and do it as efficiently and smartly as possible. Bus Rapid Transit was the only logical and practical solution, even though it had never been done in a rural area,” Whitsitt said. 

Proterra, represented by Chief Executive Officer David Bennett, earned recognition for its 100 percent battery-electric public transit buses, manufactured in the U.S. and able to recharge in less than 10 minutes. The company has led viable transportation initiatives promoting and facilitating economic growth and job creation; implementing environmentally friendly and sustainable transportation systems and services; and developing state-of-the-art technologies.  Bennett commended Foothill Transit in West Covina, CA, for its support of the company, noting that “innovation requires partners who are willing to take risks in buying the first buses.” 

Richard, chair, California High-Speed Rail Authority, received the honor for high-speed rail leadership. He noted that the idea of high-speed rail in California dates back 30 years and received state funding through a 2008 ballot measure.

Following setbacks related to the planning process, he said, the authority has worked to move forward “forging partnerships and showing that high-speed rail could and must be part of an integrated transportation system for the state.”

Also honored at the event were:

* David Barger, Jet Blue Airways (FAAC and next-generation leadership); 

* Veronica Davis, Nspiregreen, DC (bicycles and livability);

* Jerry Enzler, RiverWorks Discovery Organization (youth education program about shipping on American rivers);

* Susan Martinovich, Nevada DOT (DOT innovation and national leadership in transportation);

* Lowell Porter, Governors Highway Safety Association (leadership in reducing traffic injuries and fatalities);

* Jason Roberts, Oak Cliff Transit Authority, TX (livability and streetcars);

* Bob Sloane, Walk Boston (livability);

* Rebecca M. Townsend, Manchester Community College, CT (environmental justice strategies); and

* Ellen Voie, Women in Trucking (women in skilled transportation careers).

Photo by Julie Fischer-McCarthy, USDOT

DOT Secretary Ray LaHood and modal administrators recognized White House Champions of Change honorees at an Aug. 1 ceremony in Washington, DC. From left are: standing, FAA Administrator Michael Huerta; FTA Deputy Administrator Therese McMillan; FHWA Administrator Victor Mendez; FRA Administrator Joseph Szabo; honorees Jason Roberts, Rebecca Townsend, and Bob Sloane; DOT Secretary Ray LaHood; and honorees Jacque Whitsitt, Veronica Davis, and Phillip Washington; seated, honorees Dan Richard, David Barger, and Susan Martinovich; FMCSA Administrator Anne Ferro; and honorees Beverly Scott, Ellen Voie, David Bennett, and Jerry Enzler. Lowell Porter, not shown, also received the honor.

To view original article: http://newsmanager.commpartners.com/aptapt/issues/2012-08-10/index.html


Proterra and FTA to Discuss New Technologies at 2012 APTA Sustainability Conference

August 03, 2012

 

Proterra will discuss how new fleet technology can provide a sustainable solution for transit fleets — economically, environmentally and fiscally.

 

Proterra will discuss how new fleet technology can provide a sustainable solution for transit fleets — economically, environmentally and fiscally. The event, organized by the American Public Transportation Association (APTA), focuses on the connection between sustainability and “state of good repair” (SOGR), and how innovative partnerships are being forged to advance both objectives.
 
The conference will take place August 5 – 8, in Philadelphia, Pa., at the Marriott Downtown Hotel.
 
Joshua Goldman, Proterra director of business development, will be part of a panel discussion focused on sustainability as it relates to new technologies and new fleets. This peer exchange will take place on Tuesday, August 7 from 9:45 a.m. – 11:45 a.m. Other speakers on this panel are Matthew Lesh, TIGGER program manager for the Federal Transit Authority (FTA), Stephanie Shipp from HDR Engineering, and John Glidden, chief financial officer from the Connecticut Center for Advanced Technology Inc. Collette Erickson, chief sustainability officer for New York City Transit, will act as the session moderator.
 
As the only United States-based manufacturer of zero-emissions battery-electric buses, Proterra has led the charge in the industry to not only introduce clean technology, but also to create a sustainable operating model to make this technology a more viable option to transit agencies across the country. In addition to adding zero emissions to the environment, offering the best fuel economy of any passenger bus and having the market’s lowest carbon footprint, Proterra’s battery-electric EcoRide is the quietest bus on the road, reducing noise pollution and creating a more positive urban environment.
 
The company has recently announced key contract wins and delivered buses to several transit agencies across the country. VIA Metropolitan Transit in San Antonio, Texas, and StarMetro in Tallahassee, Fla., are anticipated to roll-out Proterra buses in the next six months.
 
“While we are constantly working on improving technology to reduce the upfront investment required for our buses, Proterra places a great emphasis on making overall life-cycle costs much less than those of competing incumbent technologies,” said Proterra director of business development, Joshua Goldman. “Proterra’s EcoRide battery-electric buses deliver high operational sustainability through reduced maintenance, operating and fuel costs to create real ongoing economic advantages for our customers that, over time, help to offset the cost of the buses themselves.”
 
Original Story Link: http://www.masstransitmag.com/press_release/10755078/proterra-and-fta-to-discuss-new-technologies-at-2012-apta-sustainability-conference

Seneca, bus company honored at White House

August 07, 2012

 

 — An Upstate company and the city of Seneca were honored at the White House for devoting time and effort in helping communities through public transportation innovations.

Officials with the Greenville-based bus-manufacturing company, Proterra, were honored at a ceremony in Washington called White House Champions of Change. U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood presented the award to Proterra, the only U.S.-based maker of 100 percent battery-electric transit buses.

"Proterra is proud to be an American company leading the global charge in providing clean, affordable and viable mass transit technology," said David Bennett, Proterra chief executive officer. "This award validates the efforts of Proterra, our forward-thinking transit agency customers, and our governmental partners, especially the South Carolina Congressional delegation, in working diligently to advance this important cause. We are thrilled to accept such an honor."

The White House Champions of Change program highlights the examples of citizens and companies across the country who are "Building an America to Last" with projects and initiatives that move their communities and industries forward. Proterra was honored for leading transportation initiatives that promote and facilitate economic growth and job creation, implementing environmentally friendly and sustainable transportation systems and services, and developing state-of-the-art technologies that are critical to improving the efficiency and effectiveness of transportation systems.

With reduced fuel and maintenance costs, Proterra's buses are an attractive option for areas looking to reduce their total cost of ownership and operating expenses. The company's buses have been or soon will be in operation in the following cities: Austin, Texas; Burbank, Calif.; Columbia, S.C.; Fort Lewis, Wash.; Pomona, Calif.; San Antonio, Texas; Tallahassee, Fla.; Seneca, S.C.; Stockton, Calif., and Reno, Nev.

Foothill Transit was the first to put the all-electric bus to work in its fleet about three years ago. In 2013, Seneca intends to switch its entire gas-powered buses to an electric fleet. Seneca city administrator Greg Dietterick attended the ceremony. He said it offered a chance to publicize the fact that in 2013, Seneca will become the first all electric, fare-free, public transit fleet in the nation. Dietterick said the city will soon be hosting visitors from across the globe, wanting to see an all-electric bus fleet in action.

"This will be Seneca's opportunity to show the rest of the world how this system works," said Dietterick. "We get to show the world that we care about the future of the planet, that we are using technology to reduce our carbon footprint through fuel costs and emissions. That is going to be huge for us here and we expect to showcase this transportation innovation with leaders from around the world."

Original story link: http://www.independentmail.com/news/2012/aug/06/seneca-bus-company-honored-at-white-house/

Proterra Accepts National White House Champions of Change Award

August 03, 2012

 

Award honors organizations providing exemplary leadership in growth of transportation industry.

 

Proterra, the leading provider of zero-emission commercial transit solutions, accepted a White House Champions of Change Award for Transportation Innovation on Tuesday, July 31. The event included a tour of the East Wing of the White House and a discussion with other winners and key leaders from Department of Transportation, including Secretary of Transportation Ray La Hood, who presented the award, as well as Federal Transit Authority (FTA) executives and White House staff members. 
 
The White House Champions of Change program highlights the stories and examples of citizens and companies across the country who are "Building an America to Last" with projects and initiatives that move their communities and industries forward. Specifically, Proterra will be honored for leading viable transportation initiatives that promote and facilitate economic growth and job creation, implementing environmentally friendly and sustainable transportation systems and services, and developing state-of-the-art technologies that are critical to improving the efficiency and effectiveness of transportation systems.
 
Chief executive officer David Bennett; chief business development officer and general counsel, Marc Gottschalk; founder, Dale Hill; and vice president of sales and marketing, Ian Shackleton, were on hand to accept the award on behalf of Proterra. Proterra customers Donna De Martino, manager and chief executive officer of California's San Joaquin Regional Transit District; Greg Dietterick, city administrator for the City of Seneca, S.C.; and Doran Barnes, executive director of Foothill Transit in Pomona, Calif. attended the ceremony as guests of the company.
 
Proterra is the only U.S.-based manufacturer of clean technology, 100 percent battery-electric transit buses. The company's EcoRide BE35 battery-electric buses recharge in less than 10 minutes, ready to serve the community with clean electric powered bus service. The 35-foot long buses are made of lightweight composite materials and are powered with state of the art battery technology. 
 
As a result, the buses have zero emissions, run virtually silent and are 600 percent more fuel efficient than diesel buses.
 
"Proterra is proud to be an American company leading the global charge in providing clean, affordable and viable mass transit technology," said Proterra chief executive officer David Bennett. "This award validates the efforts of Proterra, our forward-thinking transit agency customers, and our governmental partners, especially the South Carolina Congressional delegation, in working diligently to advance this important cause. We are thrilled to accept such an honor."
 
With reduced fuel and maintenance costs, Proterra's buses are an attractive option for areas looking to reduce their total cost of ownership and operating expenses.The company's buses have been or soon will be in operation in the following cities: Austin, Texas; Burbank, Calif.; Columbia, S.C.; Fort Lewis, Wash.; Pomona, Calif.; San Antonio, Texas; Tallahassee, Fla.; Seneca, S.C.; Stockton, Calif. and Reno, Nev.
 
"Today's Champions are leaders in developing and implementing innovative transportation initiatives," said Secretary of Transportation, Ray LaHood."They are making a difference every day in their local communities and across the country by improving America's transportation infrastructure and helping their friends and neighbors get where they need to go."
 
Original link: http://www.masstransitmag.com/press_release/10755281/proterra-accepts-national-white-house-champions-of-change-award

Proterra Welcomes New Regional Sales Director

August 07, 2012

 

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE              
Agency contact: 
JoAnne Laffey Abed, public relations manager
VantagePoint Marketing for Proterra
864.331.1265 or jabed@vantagep.com
 

Greenville, S.C. | August 8, 2012 – Proterra, the leading maker of zero-emission commercial transit solutions, welcomes Michael Hennessy as its new regional sales director.

Hennessy joins Proterra with 40 years of experience in the transportation industry. With time spent in both public and private sectors, he brings extensive knowledge in bus operations, maintenance and sales. Hennessy spent 29 years at the Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) where he held a number of senior level positions including superintendent of maintenance and general manager of bus garage operations. He most recently worked as the vice president of government sales for The Vehicle Production Group.

“We believe that Michael’s many years of experience the transit industry, coupled with his vision for moving the industry forward make him an excellent candidate for Proterra,” said David Bennett, chief executive Officer, Proterra Inc. “We know that our customers and prospects will value working with someone with his level of knowledge and know-how.”

Hennessy is heavily engaged in industry organizations as an active member of the American Public Transportation Association (APTA). He has held a number of leadership positions on various APTA committees and currently serves as the chairman of its International Bus Roadeo committee.

AboutProterra

With manufacturing in Greenville, S.C., Proterra Inc is a leading designer and manufacturer of heavy-duty electric drive systems, energy storage systems, vehicle control systems, transit buses and fast-charging stations. Proterra’s systems are scalable to commercial buses of all sizes.  Its ground-up designs have led to the EcoRide™, the world’s first full-size, 10-minute-charge transit bus. For more information on Proterra and its technology, please visit www.proterra.com.

Proterra’s Goldman Addresses Electrifying Commercial Fleets at Plug-In 2012

August 02, 2012

 

Proterra, the leading provider of zero-emission commercial transit solutions and maker of the world's first battery-electric fast-charge transit bus will share its experiences and results from the adoption of its EcoRide buses at this year's Plug-In 2012 Conference. The event, organized by the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI), facilitates open and direct dialogue between national and international stakeholders across the electric vehicle industry and transit on how to accelerate the electrification of transportation.
 
Joshua Goldman, Proterra director of business development, was part of a breakout session focused on fleet experiences and test results from the adoption of plug-in trucks, buses and other commercial vehicles titled "Trucks and Buses – Electrifying Commercial Fleets" on Tuesday, July 24 from 10:30 am – 12:00 pm. Other speakers on this panel were Kevin Walkowicz from the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) and Joe Dalum of Odyne.
 
As the only United States-based manufacturer of zero-emissions battery-electric buses, Proterra has continued to grow along with interest in clean technology. The company has recently announced key contract wins and delivered buses to several transit agencies across the country. VIA Metropolitan Transit of San Antonio, Texas, will also be exhibiting at the show, promoting its new electric zero-emission buses recently delivered by Proterra. VIA and StarMetro in Tallahassee, Fla. are anticipated to roll-out Proterra buses in the next six months.
 
"Simply put, electric transit is hot and continues to gain traction as fuel prices climb, technology advances and the total cost of ownership of electric buses is driven downward," said Proterra director of business development, Joshua Goldman. "Proterra is pleased to lead the charge in terms of continuous improvement and innovation, as well as in working closely with transit agencies to find the optimum solutions to meet their needs. Participating in this conference gives us another opportunity to advance this important cause and educate the market on the distinct advantages of electric transit."
 
To see the original story: http://www.masstransitmag.com/press_release/10747926/proterras-goldman-addresses-electrifying-commercial-fleets-at-plug-in-2012

Proterra and FTA to Discuss New Technologies at 2012 APTA Sustainability Conference

August 02, 2012

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                   
Agency contact:
JoAnne Laffey Abed, public relations manager
VantagePoint Marketing for Proterra
864.331.1265 or jabed@vantagep.com

GREENVILLE, S.C., July 31, 2012 – Proterra, the leading provider of zero-emission commercial transit solutions and maker of the world’s first battery-electric fast-charge transit bus, will discuss how new fleet technology can provide a sustainable solution for transit fleets – economically, environmentally and fiscally. The event, organized by the American Public Transportation Association (APTA), focuses on the connection between sustainability and “state of good repair” (SOGR), and how innovative partnerships are being forged to advance both objectives.  

The conference will take place August 5 – 8, in Philadelphia, PA at the Marriott Downtown Hotel.

Joshua Goldman, Proterra director of business development, will be part of a panel discussion focused on sustainability as it relates to new technologies and new fleets.  This peer exchange will take place on Tuesday, August 7 from 9:45 am – 11:45 am. Other speakers on this panel are Matthew Lesh, TIGGER program manager for the Federal Transit Authority (FTA), Stephanie Shipp from HDR Engineering, and John Glidden, chief financial officer from the Connecticut Center for Advanced Technology Inc. Collette Erickson, chief sustainability officer for New York City Transit, will act as the session moderator.

As the only United States-based manufacturer of zero-emissions battery-electric buses, Proterra has led the charge in the industry to not only introduce clean technology, but also to create a sustainable operating model to make this technology a more viable option to transit agencies across the country. In addition to adding zero emissions to the environment, offering the best fuel economy of any passenger bus and having the market’s lowest carbon footprint, Proterra’s battery-electric EcoRide™ is the quietest bus on the road, reducing noise pollution and creating a more positive urban environment.

The company has recently announced key contract wins and delivered buses to several transit agencies across the country.  VIA Metropolitan Transit in San Antonio, Texas and StarMetro in Tallahassee, Fla. are anticipated to roll-out Proterra buses in the next six months.

“While we are constantly working on improving technology to reduce the upfront investment required for our buses, Proterra places a great emphasis on making overall life-cycle costs much less than those of competing incumbent technologies,” said Proterra director of business development, Joshua Goldman. “Proterra’s EcoRide battery-electric buses deliver high operational sustainability through reduced maintenance, operating and fuel costs to create real ongoing economic advantages for our customers that, over time, help to offset the cost of the buses themselves.”

About Proterra
With manufacturing in Greenville, S.C., Proterra Inc is a leading designer and manufacturer of heavy-duty electric drive systems, energy storage systems, vehicle control systems, transit buses and fast-charging stations. Proterra’s systems are scalable to commercial buses of all sizes.  Its ground-up designs have led to the EcoRide™, the world’s first full-size, 10-minute-charge transit bus. For more information on Proterra and its technology, please visit www.proterra.com.

###
 

Electric buses for big California test

August 01, 2012




Buses said to save over $500,000 over 12 years in fuel costs in US 50% more in Europe.


The only difference commuters notice on Proterra's electric vehicles is the lack of noise; the 10 minute charging process is automated


Proterra in partnership with the San Joaquin Regional Transit District (RTD), was recently awarded a California Energy Commission (CEC) grant in the amount of $2.56 million toward an electric bus demonstration project valued at more than $4 million.


This demonstration project will introduce the San Joaquin RTD's first fully electric buses into service, reducing energy consumption, waste, and pollution in California's Central Valley, an area of strategic importance to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.


The grant award includes two new EcoRide BE35 battery-electric buses for RTD's operating fleet. Proterra will also provide the automated fastcharging station for RTD's Downtown Transit Center. The buses and charge station will be delivered to SJRTD in the spring of 2013.


Proterra's EcoRide BE35 battery-electric buses recharge in less than 10 minutes, ready to serve the community with clean electric powered bus service. The 35-foot long buses are made of lightweight composite materials and are powered with state of the art battery technology. As a result, the buses have zero emissions, run virtually silent and are 600 percent more fuel efficient than diesel buses.


"We are very impressed with Proterra's innovations, and we are proud to be a part of efforts to provide environmentally-friendly and sustainable transportation delivery options," said RTD General Manager/CEO Donna DeMartino. "This project is consistent with RTD's core values and strategic initiatives and is another positive example of how we can leverage new technology to protect our environment and save costs at the same time. We are excited to begin operating these buses next year."


This grant comes on the heels of growing interest in Proterra in California and other areas of the US.
Foothill Transit began using three of Proterra's EcoRide buses (dubbed the ecoliner by Foothill Transit) in September 2010 and is currently operating select services with their Proterra fleet.


The buses are provided by Proterra, a South Carolina company backed by Kleiner Perkins, the venture firm that was an early investor in tech companies such as Google and Amazon.

Proterra developed the charging stations and buses, which, unlike most other electric systems, only require 10 minutes to charge. "The fast charging made it really interesting for us," says Felicia Friesema, director of marketing for Foothill Transit. "Charging in under 10 minutes is essential for making electric technology feasible for use in a day-to-day system."


The docking station hangs over the road, allowing the bus to drive underneath it and connect with the charging arm, which plugs into its roof.


"Previous electric systems would need an overnight charge," says Friesema. This was not practical, she adds. "It meant we would be short a bus for an entire day … so electric bus technology wasn't really realistic for the type of service that we provide. We needed something that could get back into service quickly and work seamlessly for the customer. They don't want to know that the reason their bus didn't turn up is because it ran out of juice."


Marc Gottschalk, Proterra's chief business development officer, says zero-emission buses can also save money in the long run. "Because of the higher efficiency of the buses we can save [the transit authorities] money they would have spent on fuel costs in a pretty dramatic fashion."


An all-electric bus would save more than $500,000 in fuel costs over a 12-year period, he says. In the UK and Europe, where petrol prices tend to be higher than in the US, "the saving would probably be 50 per cent more than that".

 

To read the original story: http://www.travelmole.com/news_feature.php?news_id=2002499&c=setreg&region=2

White House honors Champions of Change for unwavering commitment to transportation innovation

August 01, 2012

 

It was my distinct pleasure to welcome the 2012 transportation Champions of Change recognized yesterday by the White House. The 14 individuals selected for this honor comprise an amazing roster of transportation excellence and leadership.

We've accomplished a lot at DOT in the past few years, but we did not do alone. In communities across the country, we have found bold, innovative leaders who have taken up the important cause of changing the way we think about transportation and have created jobs in the process.

These Champions are making a difference every day in their local communities and across the country. And, thanks to them, it is a new day for transportation in America.

WH Champions
White House Champions of Change with DOT leaders; photo credit Julie Fischer-McCarthy, DOT

Transportation today is not simply about building new roads or widening bridges. It's about looking at how people want to get where they need to go and how they are affected in different ways by the decisions we make.

It's about putting men and women back to work doing the work we need done. It's about incorporating the needs of employers who must have a reliable way of getting workers to their jobs. It's about saving aviation fuel and increasing the efficiency of our airspace and runways. It's about considering how a set of new transit stations will generate economic opportunity and help revitalize a neighborhood.

It's about examining the transportation requirements of people who have traditionally been overlooked or underserved. It's about reminding Americans that the rivers and rails that moved our freight for more than a century and a half are still thriving and keeping our economy moving forward in 2012. It's about transportation workers and their changing needs--whether it's training for new manufacturing opportunities, greater security at rest stops for truck drivers, or safer work zones for road crews.

And it's about building the kinds of communities where people can work, live, and play.

Meeting our nation's transportation challenges requires innovative thinking and the leadership skills to translate plans and dreams into greater mobility, better jobs, and more livable communities. And that is exactly what these Champions of Change have demonstrated--each and every one.

Greeting Champions of Change

 

There just isn't enough space to recognize all of the great work these 14 individuals have accomplished, so each of their names below is linked to an article on www.whitehouse.gov/champions examining their work more closely. I congratulate our Champions, and I urge you to read their stories.

Again, I can't tell you what an honor it was to join these Champions of Change. I am so proud that this great country is still capable of producing outstanding thinkers and leaders, and I'm proud to work in an Administration that celebrates that kind of achievement.

  • David Barger, Jet Blue Airlines (FAAC and Next Gen Leadership)
  • David Bennett, for Proterra, Inc.  (First Electric Buses)
  • Veronica Davis, Nspiregreen, DC (Bicycles and Livability)
  • Jerry Enzler, for RiverWorks Discovery Organization (Youth Education Program about Shipping on American Rivers)
  • Susan Martinovitch, Nevada Department of Transportation (DOT Innovation and National Leadership in Transportation)
  • Lowell Porter, Governors Highway Safety Association (Leadership in Reducing Traffic Injuries and Fatalities)
  • Dan Richard, California High-Speed Rail Authority (Leadership for High Speed Rail)
  • Jason Roberts, Oak Cliff Transit Authority, TX (Livability and Streetcars)
  • Beverly Scott, Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority (Public Transportation)
  • Bob Sloane, Walk Boston, (Livability)
  • Rebecca M. Townsend, Manchester Community College, CT (Environmental Justice Strategies)
  • Ellen Voie, Women in Trucking (Women in Skilled Transportation Careers)
  • Phillip Washington, Regional Transportation District, CO (Transportation Workforce Development)
  • Jacque Whitsitt, for Roaring Fork Transportation Authority, CO (BRT in Rural America)

Link to the original article: http://fastlane.dot.gov/2012/08/from-champions-of-change-in-transportation-an-unwavering-commitment-to-innovation.html#.UBlSiLTY9K0

Proterra CEO honored by White House

July 31, 2012

 

David Bennett called a Champion of Change in transportation industry

Proterra CEO David Bennett addresses the media in Greenville in this file photo. / FILE/Staff

The White House today honored Proterra Inc. CEO David Bennett as a Champion of Change in the transportation industry for the company’s work to develop all-electric, zero-emission buses at its Greenville-based manufacturing plant.

As part of a panel discussion, Bennett said the company has created energy moving forward to change mass transportation across the country as it develops its line of battery operated buses.

“We think we can change the industry,” Bennett said.

The company started with a “spark of an idea” about the future of transportation in American and began with founder Dale Hill’s stepping forward and taking a risk in the creation of an all-new bus model, Bennett said.

Without government funding for research and development, Proterra wouldn’t be in its current position, Bennett said, calling it unique for the private company to have developed because of government research funding.

The Champions of Change program was created as part of President Obama’s Winning the Future initiative. Today’s ceremony honored innovators in all aspects of transportation.

“America’s being transformed and you represent a part of that transformation,” Ray LaHood, Secretary of Transportation, said at the ceremony.

Proterra employs about 130 workers at its Greenville plant and Bennett has said the company hopes to have 300 employees by next year.

Bennett joined Proterra in September 2011 after holding a number of positions with Eaton, a power management company, for 10 years.

 

View original story at: http://www.greenvilleonline.com/article/20120731/BUSINESS/307310044/Proterra-CEO-honored-by-White-House?odyssey=tab%7Ctopnews%7Ctext%7CFRONTPAGE&nclick_check=1

Proterra, RFTA among those accepting Champions of Change Awards

July 30, 2012

 

Proterra, the Roaring Fork Transportation Authority (RFTA), and 12 other organizations will each accept a White House Champions of Change Award for Transportation Innovation on Tuesday, July 31 at 11:00 a.m.

The event will include a tour of the East Wing of the White House and a discussion with other winners and key leaders from the Department of Transportation, including Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood, who will present the award, as well as Federal Transit Authority (FTA) executives and White House staff members. To watch this event live, visitwww.whitehouse.gov/live at 11:00 am ET on July 31st.

The White House Champions of Change program highlights the stories and examples of citizens and companies across the country who are “Building an America to Last” with projects and initiatives that move their communities and industries forward.

Specifically, Proterra will be honored for leading viable transportation initiatives that promote and facilitate economic growth and job creation, implementing environmentally friendly and sustainable transportation systems and services, and developing state-of-the-art technologies that are critical to improving the efficiency and effectiveness of transportation systems.

Chief Executive Officer David Bennett; Chief Business Development Officer and General Counsel Marc Gottschalk; founder, Dale Hill; and Vice President of Sales and Marketing Ian Shackleton, will be on hand to accept the award on behalf of Proterra.

Representing RFTA in this event will be Jacque Whitsitt, vice chair of RFTA’s Board of Directors. Jacque led the campaign which resulted in a local vote to increase sales tax to assist RFTA. These taxes combined with a Very Small Starts grant from the FTA are what enabled RFTA to build the VelociRFTA bus rapid transit system (BRT). It is the creation of this first rural BRT system that resulted in RFTA’s White House honor.

RFTA has led the nation with use of biofuels at high altitudes, the Bike Express bus and rural bike loading on buses, but the VelociRFTA BRT system is the first innovation to be honored nationally. When U.S. Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood came out to visit the Carbondale VelociRFTA site under construction, he commended the project as a model of cooperation for implementing the country’s first rural BRT project.

 

View the original story at: http://busride.com/2012/07/proterra-rfta-among-those-accepting-champions-of-change-awards/

Committed to American Innovation, American Jobs, and Environmentally-Friendly Mass Transportation

July 30, 2012

 

David Bennett is being honored as a Champion of Change for his time and effort developing innovative ways to help grow and expand the transportation industry.  


Proterra is a quintessential American story. Our world-leading EcoRide™ 35 foot battery-electric fast-charge transit bus was designed and developed in the United States by Dale Hill, a bus industry veteran with an entrepreneur’s sensibility. Since its inception, Proterra has made strides that have taken transit bus technology from a platform mostly built in the 1950’s to a platform that today satisfies the environmental and efficiency goals that the U.S. Federal Transit Administration hoped to achieve in the year 2030. Think of it: the EcoRide achieves 23 miles per gallon diesel equivalent efficiency, carrying 68 passengers – five to six times greater than a diesel hybrid or CNG bus and potentially more efficient than the passenger car you drive today.

In fact, if the EcoRide replaced all 20,000 equivalent diesel and CNG buses in the US market, the US would reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 870,000 tons per year in comparison to CNG powered buses (and more in comparison to diesel) as well as eliminating millions of gallons of foreign imports of oil for diesel fuel. Moreover, replacing diesel buses with the EcoRide eliminates emissions of carcinogens like benzene and particulate emissions in our urban communities, helping reduce cancer risk and lung diseases like asthma. In sum, the EcoRide delivers cost-effective, quiet, pollution free and affordable transportation to bus riders and their neighborhoods.

A tremendous amount of innovation has gone into the EcoRide, allowing us to create a bus that fully charges in under 10 minutes (try that with your cell phone) and results in a bus that is a one to one replacement for existing diesel and CNG buses. From the lightweight composite body sourced in South Carolina to drive train, energy storage and charging equipment sourced in California, Colorado, North Carolina, Nevada, Indiana and elsewhere, the EcoRide leads the industry with more than 80% American- made content.

I am honored to represent Proterra as its CEO and recognize that we were built by the contributions of so many, from the founder Dale Hill, to support from the Department of Transportation and the Federal Transit Administration, and the forward-looking transit agencies like Foothill Transit in West Covina, California, VIA Transit in San Antonio, Texas and Star Metro in Tallahassee, Florida, not to mention the assistance of our community of Greenville, South Carolina and the State of South Carolina - all leading the “charge” to a better future for transit. Most importantly, our employees deserve recognition as true “Champions of Change,” working long hours under challenging conditions to bring innovation to market at unparalleled speed.

We have irreversibly changed mass transit by breaking down barriers through innovation – showing the industry that you can have a “green” zero-emission vehicle that is also cost-effective. There is now no turning back. Other bus manufacturers will either have to follow or be left behind, and the result will be the elimination of pollution, massive reduction of carbon emissions and quality of life improvements in urban areas across the globe.

David Bennett is CEO of Proterra

View original story at: http://www.whitehouse.gov/blog/2012/07/30/committed-american-innovation-american-jobs-and-environmentally-friendly-mass-transp

Proterra to Accept National White House Champions of Change Award on July 31

July 30, 2012

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                
Agency contact:
JoAnne Laffey Abed, public relations manager
VantagePoint Marketing for Proterra
864.331.1265 or jabed@vantagep.com

 

GREENVILLE, S.C., July 30, 2012 – Proterra, the leading provider of zero-emission commercial transit solutions, will accept a White House Champions of Change Award for Transportation Innovation on Tuesday, July 31 at 11:00 a.m.  The event will include a tour of the East Wing of the White House and a discussion with other winners and key leaders from Department of Transportation, including Secretary of Transportation Ray La Hood, who will present the award, as well as Federal Transit Authority executives and White House staff members. To watch this event live, visit www.whitehouse.gov/live at 11:00 am ET on July 31st.

The White House Champions of Change program highlights the stories and examples of citizens and companies across the country who are “Building an America to Last” with projects and initiatives that move their communities and industries forward. Specifically, Proterra will be honored for leading viable transportation initiatives that promote and facilitate economic growth and job creation, implementing environmentally friendly and sustainable transportation systems and services, and developing state-of-the-art technologies that are critical to improving the efficiency and effectiveness of transportation systems.

Chief executive officer David Bennett; chief business development officer and general counsel, Marc Gottschalk; founder, Dale Hill; and vice president of sales and marketing, Ian Shackleton, will be on hand to accept the award on behalf of Proterra. Proterra customers Donna DeMartino, general manager and chief executive officer of California’s San Joaquin Regional Transit District; Greg Dietterick, city administrator for the City of Seneca, S.C.; and Doran Barnes, executive director of Foothill Transit in Pomona, Calif. will attend the ceremony as guests of the company.

Proterra is the only U.S.-based manufacturer of clean technology, 100 percent battery-electric transit buses.  The company’s EcoRide™ BE35 battery-electric buses recharge in less than 10 minutes, ready to serve the community with clean electric powered bus service.  The 35-foot long buses are made of lightweight composite materials and are powered with state of the art battery technology. As a result, the buses have zero emissions, run virtually silent and are 600 percent more fuel efficient than diesel buses.

 “Proterra is proud to be an American company leading the global charge in providing clean, affordable and viable mass transit technology,” said Proterra chief executive officer David Bennett. “This award validates the efforts of Proterra, our forward-thinking transit agency customers, and our governmental partners, especially the South Carolina Congressional delegation, in working diligently to advance this important cause. We are thrilled to accept such an honor.”

With reduced fuel and maintenance costs, Proterra’s buses are an attractive option for areas looking to reduce their total cost of ownership and operating expenses.  The company’s buses have been or soon will be in operation in the following cities: Austin, Texas; Burbank, Calif.; Columbia, S.C.; Fort Lewis, Wash.; Pomona, Calif.; San Antonio, Texas; Tallahassee, Fla.; Seneca, S.C.; Stockton, Calif. and Reno, Nev.

“Today’s Champions are leaders in developing and implementing innovative transportation initiatives,” said Secretary of Transportation, Ray LaHood.  “They are making a difference every day in their local communities and across the country by improving America’s transportation infrastructure and helping their friends and neighbors get where they need to go.”

AboutProterra

With manufacturing in Greenville, S.C., Proterra is a leading designer and manufacturer of heavy-duty electric drive systems, energy storage systems, vehicle control systems, transit buses and fast-charging stations. Proterra’s systems are scalable to commercial buses of all sizes.  Its ground-up designs have led to the EcoRide, the world’s first full-size, 10-minute charge transit bus. For more information on Proterra and its technology, please visit: www.proterra.com.

The green route

July 26, 2012

The Financial Times | By Matthew Garrahan

In southern California, the car reigns supreme. But in a region not exactly known for its wide range of public transport options, one city is experimenting with technology that could point the way to a greener future.

Available to view on FT.com here: http://www.ft.com/cms/s/2/929483a8-d01c-11e1-a3d2-00144feabdc0.html

Proterra Proliferates: eBuses in Four States

July 24, 2012

Texas, Florida, South Carolina and More for California

Fleets and Fuels | July 24, 2012

EcoRide BE35 battery electric buses by Proterra are spreading from an initial trial with Foothill Transit in Southern California to fleets in Texas, Florida, South Carolina and California’s Central Valley. 

StarMetro in Tallahassee has received one of its three Proterra buses, with which it will begin service in early 2013.

Attendant fast-charge systems from Proterra enable full service on real-world routes with zero vehicular emissions.

San Antonio’s Via Metropolitan Transit has taken delivery of three of new 35-foot Proterra buses, which it will operate as “The Arc.”

“We are hoping to have these things in service within the next six to eight weeks,” says Via’s Gary Glasscock. The Altairnano lithium-titanate battery buses will be charged using AeroVironment fast-charge equipment programmed by and purchased through Proterra, he told F&F – with all of their electricity derived via wind power through arrangement with San Antonio’s CPS Energy, aka City Public Service.

In Florida, “We have one bus in hand, one bus scheduled to be delivered in August, and another bus scheduled to be delivered in September,” Ralph Wilder of says Tallahassee’s StarMetro.

Following a period of “shadow service” for data-gathering and training, regular StarMetro passenger service is to commence in early 2013, he says.

In California, the San Joaquin Regional Transit District is applying a California Energy Commission grant for $2.56 million for the Proterra bus demonstration, part of CEC’s Electric Drive Strategic Plan administrated by Calstart.

The grant award includes two new EcoRide BE35 battery-electric buses for RTD’s operating fleet. Proterra says it’s “producing the automated fast-charging station for RTD’s Downtown Transit Center as a matching commitment to the CEC grant.”

RTD says that its only responsibilities are the installation costs for the charging station and the administration of the CEC grant. RTD anticipates charge station installation and bus delivery by the spring of 2013.

Seneca, S.C. – about 40 miles from Proterra’s new headquarters and manufacturing facility in Greenville – will see 2013 deployment of four Proterra buses, with two charging stations.

The Seneca announcement follows word from the city last year that it would use funds from a $4.1 million in Federal Transit Administration TIGGER (Transit Investments in Greenhouse Gas and Emissions Reduction) money and local matching funds to buy the Proterra electrics.

“The city of Seneca will be the first in the nation to operate a fully-electric bus system and to do so on a ‘fare-free basis,’” Proterra says.

The buses will be operated by Clemson Area Transit – CATbus –serving both Seneca and Clemson University. “We could not be more proud,” CATbus GM Al Babinicz says in Proterra’s Seneca announcement.

According to Proterra, “Seneca’s current diesel bus fleet averages less than four miles per gallon; with current fuel prices averaging close to $4.00 per gallon, the running cost per mile for fuel alone is $1.05. Proterra EcoRide transit buses average 20 diesel-equivalent miles per gallon, or about $.18 per mile – a huge cost savings.”

The lightweight Proterra buses have drive motors by UQM Technologies (AMEX:UQM). Three earlier vehicles remain in operation with Foothill Transit in Los Angeles. As detailed when they were fielded in 2010, the EcoRide aka Ecoliner buses have lithium-titanate spinal oxide electrode batteries from Altairnano. They were deployed using a fast-charge system by AeroVironment for in-route charging and hence 100% electric operation for a full Foothill route (F&F, January 11 and August 9, 2010).

“Proterra continues to evaluate all technology with an eye toward continuous improvement to keep options on the table,” a spokeswoman told F&F. “The company also focuses heavily on creating its own proprietary systems, rather than relying largely on off-the-shelf technology from vendors,” she said.

Proterra’s 35-foot composite-body buses “have zero emissions, run virtually silent, and are 600% more fuel efficient than diesel buses,” the manufacturer says. “The company is holding to its model of conductive overhead charging in 10 minutes,” the spokeswoman says.

“Proterra’s fast-charging battery-electric buses take less than 10 minutes to fully charge and offer significant operational savings over traditional diesel or hybrid vehicles,” said Proterra CEO David Bennett.

Original article can be found at: http://www.fleetsandfuels.com/fuels/evs/2012/07/proterra-proliferates-ebuses-in-four-states/

Get onboard the electric transit bus with Proterra

July 23, 2012

On July 19, 2012 The City of Seneca, S.C. and leading battery-electric bus manufacturer Proterra showcased their partnership at recent event featured on the local FOX affiliate morning show.

Seneca has recently signed an agreement with Proterra, the leading provider in zero-emission commercial transit solutions, to deliver four new EcoRide™ transit buses and two charging stations. These buses will make Seneca the first city in the country to operate a fully-electric bus system and to do so on a “fare-free” basis.

Representatives from the City of Seneca and Proterra founder Dale Hill were on-hand to answer questions and provide commentary. Attendees were also able to tour an actual Proterra BE-35 bus like the ones that will be delivered to Seneca in early 2013.

"Proterra is deeply committed to the success of its transit agency customers and to educating the public about the environmental and fiscal benefits of electric transit," said Proterra founder Dale Hill. "We welcome the opportunity to get all involved excited about clean technology and to increase demand for our buses through improved awareness."

For more information on the event, please contact Riley Johnson, City of Seneca events coordinator at 864-723-3910 or visit www.seneca.sc.us. For more information on Proterra, please contact JoAnne Laffey Abed at the number above or visit www.proterra.com

Proterra Electric Bus Rolls Into Seneca

July 24, 2012

By LaDonna Beeker

The Journal

SENECA — Seneca residents got a peek Thursday at an electric bus that will soon roll through city streets via fare-free busing.

Seneca received $4.1 million in grants to purchase four electric buses from Proterra. The electric buses are described as "extremely quiet" and release no emmissions. The buses will be fare-free to the public (Jessica Nelms l The Journal).

Proterra, a Greenville electric-bus manufacturing company, was one of many vendors at WHNS Fox 21’s Celebrate the Carolinas event Thursday morning on Ram Cat Alley in downtown Seneca. Proterra parked one of its electric buses so attendees could take a tour and build excitement for what is to come in Seneca.

“Everybody is tickled pink,” said Proterra Founder Dale Hill. “… Like it or not, this is putting Seneca on the map for sure.”

Proterra’s electric buses are Hill’s brainchild, but he said it was the company’s engineers who put all the parts in place and brought the buses to life.

“I drew the coloring book, and the engineers colored the pictures,” Hill said. “I had the idea and got the funding to start the work. I did the physical design and appearance (for the electric bus).”

In November, Seneca announced a $4.1 million grant from the Federal Transit Authority’s Transit Investment in Greenhouse Gas and Energy Reduction program. The grant will provide four electric buses to the city, which will make Seneca the first all-electric bus city in the nation.

Each electric bus — seating 35 and allowing 32 people to stand — charges in 10 minutes from a pole that connects to the roof of the bus. The buses cause no emissions and require no oil changes. The city will save $500,000 per bus in fuel costs during a 12-year period and will bring in thousands more in maintenance savings to the city.

“It’s extremely quiet and rides smoother than a conventional CAT bus,” Hill said, adding he started designing the electric bus in 2007 and had the first one created in 2010. “… Very few (developers) get to live to see (a product) totally commercialized. They get the idea rolling, but don’t have the opportunity to stay with it to see it come forward. I’m the Col. Sanders of Proterra.”

Proterra has electric buses in several cities in California, Texas and Florida. The electric bus also passed a 15,000-mile test, which checked its safety and mechanical ability on the road.

Seneca’s electric buses are being built in Greenville with bodies made in Summerville. Hill said the project has created more jobs at Proterra, which also helps Seneca since many company employees reside in Oconee County.

“We are very excited,” said Mayor Dan Alexander. “A lot of doors have opened in Seneca. … The (electric) bus is an amazing bus.”

Alexander said the city’s partnership with Proterra and the Clemson Area Transit (CAT) made this opportunity possible in the city, while also recognizing the late Clemson Mayor Larry Abernathy. Alexander said having an electric bus system was just as much Seneca’s idea as it was Abernathy’s dream.

Clemson is also considering utilizing electric buses on its CAT routes.

City Administrator Greg Dietterick said the electric buses in Seneca are another way the city is settling into its niche.

“Economic development is not just about industries,” Dietterick said. “… Industry is a critical piece to discover (the city’s) natural resources. Industries look for quality of life as much as they look for (property and location). Our goal is to attract businesses.”

According to Hill, Seneca is doing just that with visitors coming to the 75,000-resident county from India, China, South America, Canada and several cities in the United States to see first-hand Proterra’s buses and what the area has to offer for a cutting-edge industry.

The electric buses are expected to be in Seneca by early 2013.

ladonna@dailyjm.com | (864) 973-6684

Proterra’s Goldman to Address Electrifying Commercial Fleets at Plug-In 2012

July 19, 2012

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                
Agency contact:
JoAnne Laffey Abed, public relations manager
VantagePoint Marketing for Proterra
864.331.1265 or jabed@vantagep.com

GREENVILLE, S.C., July 19, 2012 – Proterra, the leading provider of zero-emission commercial transit solutions and maker of the world’s first battery-electric fast-charge transit bus will share its experiences and results from the adoption of its EcoRide™ buses at this year’s Plug-In 2012 Conference. The event, organized by the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI), facilitates open and direct dialogue between national and international stakeholders across the electric vehicle industry and transit on how to accelerate the electrification of transportation.

The conference will take place Monday, July 23through Thursday, July 26, in San Antonio, Texas at the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center.

Joshua Goldman, Proterra director of business development, will be part of a breakout session focused on fleet experiences and test results from the adoption of plug-in trucks, buses and other commercial vehicles titled “Trucks and Buses – Electrifying Commercial Fleets” on Tuesday, July 24 from 10:30 am – 12:00 pm. Other speakers on this panel are Kevin Walkowicz from the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) and Joe Dalum of Odyne.

As the only United States-based manufacturer of zero-emissions battery-electric buses, Proterra has continued to grow along with interest in clean technology.  The company has recently announced key contract wins and delivered buses to several transit agencies across the country.  VIA Metropolitan Transit of San Antonio, Texas, will also be exhibiting at the show, promoting its new electric zero-emission buses recently delivered by Proterra.  VIA and StarMetro in Tallahassee, Fla. are anticipated to roll-out Proterra buses in the next six months.

Those interested in learning more about Proterra’s EcoRide™ buses and VIA’s electric bus program during the conference, can stop by booth #122 to meet representatives from both organizations.

“Simply put, electric transit is hot and continues to gain traction as fuel prices climb, technology advances and the total cost of ownership of electric buses is driven downward,” said Proterra director of business development, Joshua Goldman. “Proterra is pleased to lead the charge in terms of continuous improvement and innovation, as well as in working closely with transit agencies to find the optimum solutions to meet their needs. Participating in this conference gives us another opportunity to advance this important cause and educate the market on the distinct advantages of electric transit.”

-more-

About VIA
VIA Metropolitan Transit began providing public transportation services in the San Antonio area in March 1978. The agency currently serves San Antonio and 12 other incorporated municipalities, providing bus service (including express, skip, and downtown circulator service), paratransit service for people with disabilities, special event service, and vanpool service for commuters.

AboutProterra

With manufacturing in Greenville, S.C., Proterra Inc is a leading designer and manufacturer of heavy-duty electric drive systems, energy storage systems, vehicle control systems, transit buses and fast-charging stations. Proterra’s systems are scalable to commercial buses of all sizes.  Its ground-up designs have led to the EcoRide™, the world’s first full-size, 10-minute-charge transit bus. For more information on Proterra and its technology, please visit www.proterra.com.

Proterra Charges Ahead

July 13, 2012

Greenville Journal | By Dick Hughes, Contributor

When Proterra’s main investor was busted for fraud, it was the best thing that could have happened to the company with the nation’s only commercially viable electric bus but no money to build or sell it.

“It’s strange but true,” said Jack McFarland, Proterra’s chief financial officer. “I look back and say we made champagne out of lemons.”

The lemons landed 18 months ago when the SEC charged Francisco Illarramendi with fraud to fund his companies, including MK Energy, which had put $20.4 million into Proterra. Illarramendi pleaded guilty.

With MK forced into bankruptcy receivership, Proterra’s source of money vanished, and it teetered on insolvency. To make matters worse, defrauded investors in MK wanted their money back. In the end, to Proterra’s benefit, the court receiver awarded the MK investors “a small portion of that,” McFarland said.

“From a very rough spot in the road,” said McFarland, “the company has come a very long way. The future is very bright.”

A “blue chip” consortium, including the Silicon Valley venture firm of Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, General Motors [Ventures] and Mitsui [Mitsui & Co. Global Investment, Inc.] of Japan, distilled the champagne with a $30-million investment.

New leadership was hired, the board was reconstituted, top-flight engineers were brought in, R&D was strengthened, a marketing team was assembled, the assembly line made more efficient and expectations were brought into check with marketplace reality.

While the company’s finances were stabilized with the initial investment of the Kleiner Perkins group, both the company and the investor group knew “it was not enough to get us to profitability,” McFarland said.

“If I said to them tomorrow, ‘We need more capital,’ we would have it. But we don’t need it. We still are on plan, and they are still on plan to make an additional investment at the end of the year.”

A third round is scheduled when the company approaches break-even to help push it to profitability.

“Our investors are patient and believe the solution we are bringing to the market is going to be very attractive to a large number of people. It will take a while before they will see a return on their investment,” McFarland said. That cycle typically takes three to five years, he said.

“Our real accomplishment over the last 12 months was building a world-class management team,” McFarland said.

Management, which had been divided between Golden, Colo., where Dale Hill founded the company, and Greenville, which had the manufacturing arm, was consolidated in Greenville.

David Bennett, who headed Eaton Corp.’s Asian vehicle division and was a vice president for industrial development, was hired as chief executive officer in October.

Since then, the workforce has grown from around 90 to 120, largely as a consequence of building up the R&D staff with engineers, which now number around 40.

“We do our designs from the ground up, so we have to have that investment in an outstanding engineering group. We’ve brought quite a bit of engineering talent into Grenville,” McFarland said.

Hill, who founded the company and brought it to Greenville, stepped aside as chairman and board member when the Kleiner Perkins group acquired 70 percent ownership with its investment.

“Dale is our evangelist,” said McFarland. “Our founder has a lot of knowledge in the industry of people and players, so he opens a lot of doors for the sales guys.”

Even with money tight, he said, transit agencies are taking notice of the operating cost and environmental advantages Proterra’s fast-charging buses offer for urban markets with short, defined routes, a market niche Proterra holds exclusively.

Five buses are on the assembly line, and orders from transit agencies for “as many as 10” are awaiting Department of Transportation funding to subsidize 80 percent of their purchase. (All modes of public mass transit are subsidized.)

Price is an obstacle, and Proterra is focused on reducing costs to be competitive with diesels, the workhorse in mass bus transit but a major contributor to greenhouse gases and, especially with older fleets, a noise and odor nuisance.

A base diesel can be had for $300,000, but transit agencies pay more in the range of $500,000 to $700,000 for fully equipped models.

Proterra has squeezed out more than $200,000 to bring its price to just under $1 million, but needs to get much lower through volume and efficiencies to match the price of diesels, McFarland said.

“We will get there. That is what the engineers are working on – to get the cost down now that we have the basic technology figured out.”

The potential market is huge. Buses provide 80 percent of all public transportation in Proterra’s targeted urban market, and McFarland believes that within 10 years “battery-driven buses are going to be a mainstream product.”

Looking to the future when ecologically sustainable and cost-effective buses are in demand for long-distance transit, Proterra is working with the DOT-funded Center for Transportation and the Environment and DOT’s National Fuel Cell Bus Program to develop hydrogen and [battery] electric hydrogen fuel-cell hybrids.

It has prototypes in operation in Austin, Texas, Burbank, Calif., and Fort Lewis, Wash., and has been asked to develop a fourth to take the technology to the “next generation”. The Austin bus was first put in operation in Columbia in 2010.

Ironically, Hill’s original plan was to use hydrogen fuel cells to provide continuous battery charging.

“In the process of generating this next generation of fuel cells for a bus, Dale discovered it was possible to recharge the bus very quickly, and in actuality the fuel cell then became purely an alternative, as opposed to being fundamentally the core,” McFarland explained.

Further, Hill had identified the market with the most potential as being transit age3ncies that run short, defined routes that lend themselves to Proterra’s battery range of 30-40 miles and fast recharging during driver breaks.

“That’s when Dale said, ‘Wow, since fuel cells are expensive and we are years away from becoming mainstream, there’s an opportunity to bring our fast-charge technology front and center at much greater economic benefit in the short run.’”

Still, McFarland said, Proterra is devoting resources to hydrogen technology to be able “to put that technology into our product line at the right time, but we do not see that as being a commercially feasible high-volume product within the next several years.”

Contact Dick Hughes at dhuges@greenvillejournal.com

Proterra Builds Its Case

July 07, 2012

Proterra counts on the long term

The Greenville News | by Rudolph Bell

Proterra says it's working to cut the cost of its zero-emission electric buses, but they still are double the price of diesel.

It’s pretty easy to grasp the environmental argument for buying the buses that startup venture Proterra makes in Greenville.

Since they’re powered by batteries, they don’t pollute. Air pollution, though, isn’t the only thing that transit agencies consider when buying buses.

The cost of the revolutionary electric buses has led to a great irony in Proterra’s story. The city that fought so hard to land the company as an important step in the region’s growth as an international automotive and transportation cluster says it can’t afford to buy them.

Proterra is working hard to push down the price of its bus as it moves production to a mass scale, but at $950,000, the current price is still about double the cost of a diesel.

For the Greenville Transit Authority, that’s too much, absent some help from the federal government, its chairman said. He said the Transit Authority last year used stimulus funds to buy seven diesel buses.

The situation underscores the challenges faced by Proterra, Greenville’s highest-profile startup company, as it strives to bring alternative transportation to a U.S. market addicted to oil.

It’s a different story in Clemson, where the bus system expects the greater up-front cost of four Proterra buses to be balanced over time by savings in fuel and maintenance.

Clemson Area Transit is putting the Proterra buses on the road with the help of a $4.1 million federal grant secured by the city of Seneca, which contracts with CAT for its bus service.

For Proterra, the Seneca deployment provides a chance to build the case for the EcoRide’s value.

That case rests on saving money as well as cutting pollution, said David Bennett, the company’s chief executive officer.

“It’s got to make economic sense and environmental sense,” he said.

Clemson system sees savings

Al Babinicz, CAT president, said he hopes to replace all of the system’s 26 diesel buses with electric buses over time, eliminating emissions entirely.

That will bring big savings in fuel costs, he said.

Also, electric buses have more room for passengers since they don’t need a big engine compartment, and they’re easier to maintain since they don’t require oil changes or some of the equipment that goes in a diesel bus, such as an exhaust system.

Still, the Proterra buses can be used only on CAT’s shorter routes in Seneca and Clemson University since they need to be recharged after 30 to 40 miles, Babinicz said.

He expects the distance that electric buses can travel without recharging to grow as battery technology advances.

And Babinicz sees Proterra’s purchase price coming down as the company continues to fine-tune its product and processes and finds the economies of scale that come with mass production.

“It’s a game changer for the transit industry,” he said about Proterra’s bus.

CAT serves Pendleton, Central and Anderson in addition to Clemson and Seneca. Passengers ride free.

Last year, CAT opened a new headquarters in Clemson with 210 solar panels on the roof and other “green” features.

Babinicz, the new president of the Transportation Association of South Carolina, said he’ll launch the zero-emission service in Seneca as soon as Proterra delivers the buses and two charging stations costing $600,000 apiece.

The company has a year to do that under the $5.4 million deal it recently signed with Seneca in its biggest contract to date.

Proterra’s EcoRide bus passed federal government testing in Pennsylvania, but data about its performance is limited because only 10 have been manufactured so far, according to the company.

Babinicz will carefully monitor how the buses perform in Seneca, as will Proterra itself and a nonprofit organization that will be collecting data for the Federal Transit Administration, the agency that provided the grant to Seneca.

“If the Seneca model proves out a success — and we all expect that it will, in terms of saving money financially — why wouldn’t we replace all of our diesel buses with electric and why wouldn’t Greenville do that?” Babinicz said.

Cutting Upstate pollution

Ben Haskew, president of the Greenville Chamber, said the pollution-free vehicles can only help the Upstate comply with federal ozone standards and avoid being declared a “non-attainment zone” by the Environmental Protection Agency.

If the Upstate slips into non-attainment status, manufacturers could face new costs for anti-pollution equipment, giving them an incentive to put jobs elsewhere.

Haskew said he applauds CAT’s goal to eliminate all bus pollution, as well as recent environmentally friendly moves by the city of Greenville, such as making two electric cars available for rent by the public downtown.

Art Guzzetti, vice president for policy at the American Public Transportation Association in Washington, said he’s not aware of any other transit system with a goal of eliminating tailpipe emissions entirely, though he said there’s growing interest across the industry in alternative fuels.

With natural gas prices low and supplies growing, a lot of transit systems are trying buses fueled by compressed natural gas, he said.

Babinicz said the results in Seneca could have big ramifications for public transit since the best practices of transit systems are scalable, meaning they can be applied to other systems of different size.

“So if it works in Seneca, South Carolina, it will work in Chicago or Philadelphia,” he said.

Greenville's decision

In Greenville, efforts to deploy Proterra buses have been put on hold, said David Mitchell, chairman of GTA, which operates the Greenlink bus system.

GTA applied three times without success for federal funds to buy Proterra buses for expanded service, and Mitchell said it still hopes to deploy the battery-powered vehicles at some point.

“But funding and the cost of those buses and their operations is making it prohibitive right now,” he said.

In 2009, GTA sought $100 million in federal dollars to pay for a regional, rapid-bus system using electric buses. That system would have stretched from Clemson University to Greenville-Spartanburg International Airport and from Travelers Rest to Fountain Inn.

In 2010, GTA asked for $15 million to develop an eight-mile, nine-station line with electric buses that would have linked downtown with the International Center for Automotive Research.

After its second grant application was denied, Mitchell said in remarks at ICAR in early 2011 that GTA would push on and “find a way to operate a Proterra bus in the same community that Proterra buses are manufactured.”

That fall, GTA applied for federal funding again, but its application for $21.7 million to run eight Proterra buses was likewise rejected.

Energy savings

Proterra already knows that Seneca’s energy cost per mile will drop from $1.05 to 18 cents, and it’s hoping to find a 20 percent reduction in maintenance costs, Bennett said.

Quantifying the maintenance savings is important because maintenance costs closely follow fuel costs as a financial concern for transit agencies, he said.

Proterra is already collecting data from Foothill Transit in Los Angeles County, an early customer with three buses in the field, but the buses going to Seneca will have new features.

Those include a new transmission that Proterra will build in house and a new composite body that the company spent a year developing, Bennett said.

Seneca will also be the proving ground for Proterra’s next-generation battery technology, though not at first, he said.

“Seneca’s getting what we call version 1.5,” Bennett said. “There was a base version in 1.0 and this is version 1.5 with a bunch of major improvements, with both cost down and quality up.”

The Seneca deployment will also provide a conveniently located demonstration of Proterra’s product for customers who visit its Greenville plant and headquarters, such as the transit agencies from Denver and Reno that stopped by recently.

Bennett said Seneca’s $950,000-per-bus price covers all the options — including new safety features for doors — for 27 percent less than what Foothill Transit paid.

He said Proterra is working hard to cut the bus price even more, and could probably sell the EcoRide for $650,000 to $800,000 if sales hit 50 to 100 units a year.

“We want to make it a preferred option to buy these vehicles in the transit space and one of the elements is you’ve got to bring the acquisition costs down, not just the operating costs,” Bennett said.

National interest

The Center for Transportation and the Environment, a nonprofit organization in Atlanta, will monitor the use of Proterra buses in Seneca to determine the effect on energy usage and emissions, said director Steve Clermont.

The Atlanta-based nonprofit helps foster alternative fuel and transportation technologies and previously worked with Proterra to develop a bus powered by a combination of batteries and a hydrogen fuel cell.

Clermont said CTE will report its findings in Seneca to the FTA, which wants to know how Proterra’s technology might help transit agencies across the country.

“What we hope to find is that the operational savings over time outweigh the higher up-front capital costs,” he said.

Proterra has reconfigured its manufacturing space in the former Orders Distributing Co. warehouse along Interstate 85 in Greenville to create a new assembly line that Bennett said is more efficient and capable of making 300 buses a year.

The line was designed with the help of GM Ventures, the venture capital arm of General Motors and one of Proterra’s investors.

Five buses were being assembled on the line recently, three bound for a transit agency in Tallahassee, one likely going to Stockton, Calif., and the fifth a special project for General Electric.

Bennett said workers were putting in 58 hours a week to fill the orders and were due for a much-deserved rest during a scheduled plant shutdown this month.

The former Eaton Corp. executive said Proterra has about 130 employees so far and hopes to have 300 next year.

He said Proterra has sold or gotten orders for 19 buses and has open or pending requests for up to 22 more out of California.

For Seneca, the Proterra buses are part of a plan to diversify the economy and help make up for the loss of textile jobs.

Running electric vehicles on the city’s three bus routes will create the first all-electric, zero-emission municipal transit system, a novelty that could draw visitors from around the world, city officials say.

It would dovetail with Oconee County’s emphasis on tourism and a public/private initiative to develop a 110-suite hotel with pool and conference center near the intersection of Highways 123 and 130.

“We do feel like we’re going to attract people globally because we will be the first in the country that’s all-electric,” said Seneca Mayor Dan Alexander.

The 8,300-resident city secured $2 million from Southern Co., the Atlanta-based power company that supplies power to its electric utility, in order to meet federal grant requirements for local matching money.

Seneca has applied for nearly $10 million more in federal monies to buy two more Proterra buses, charging stations for passenger cars, 15 transit shelters with solar panels and high-tech information boards, bike lanes and new sidewalks, according to its grant applications.

Seneca would also use the federal funding to develop a training program for electric vehicle mechanics in a former textile mill the city bought in April for $2.1 million.

The training program, if it materializes, could make Oconee County a producer of the work force needed by the electric vehicle industry and help the county recruit companies in that industry “because we’ve got the talent here,” said Richard Blackwell, economic development director for the county.

The CAT president said he’d like to see zero-emission buses deployed not only across his own system but across the Upstate.

“You’ll always have naysayers on the sidelines saying this will never work, this is ridiculous, this is too expensive, or what have you,” Babinicz said. “But at the end, if (the Seneca deployment) does what it needs to do, it’s a game-changer for the industry, and that’s the exciting part of it, and it’s all right here in South Carolina.”

View Original Article from The Greenville News: http://www.greenvilleonline.com/article/20120708/BUSINESS/307080010/Proterra-counts-long-term?odyssey=mod|newswell|text|FRONTPAGE|p

Proterra Signs Contract with City of Seneca to Deliver Zero-Emission EcoRide™ Transit Buses

July 02, 2012

GREENVILLE, S.C., June 28, 2012 – Proterra,the leading provider of zero-emission commercial transit solutions, has signed an agreement with the city of Seneca, S.C. to deliver four new EcoRide™zero-emission transit buses and two charging stations.The contract follows Seneca’s initial announcement in November 2011 of its intention to use funds from a $4.1 million Federal Transit Administration (FTA) TIGGER (Transit Investments in Greenhouse Gas and Emissions Reduction) grant, along with local matching funds, to purchase Proterra buses.

Upon delivery of these EcoRide buses, the city of Seneca will be the first in the nation to operate a fully-electric bus system and to do so on a “fare-free basis.”  Operated by Clemson Area Transit (CATbus), these vehicles will serve both the city and the students of Clemson University. City of Seneca and CATbus officials believe this “green” project, with plans for future expansion, will not only greatly reduce fuel costs, but also lead to job creation and a more sustainable future.

“We could not be more proud to be at the forefront of clean, emissions-free transit,” said CATbus general manager Al Babinicz. “It is rare that a community of our size gets to play as important a role in advancing clean transit, and we hope to expand on our efforts by helping make the entire CATbus system emissions-free in the future.”

Seneca’s current diesel bus fleet averages less than four miles per gallon; with current fuel prices averaging close to $4.00 per gallon, the running cost per mile for fuel alone is $1.05. Proterra EcoRide transit buses average 20 diesel-equivalent miles per gallon, or about $.18 per mile – a huge cost savings.

“Seneca realizes that zero-emission transit solutions not only have a positive effect on the environment, but also on their bottom line” said David Bennett, chief executive officer for Proterra. “Proterra’s fast-charging battery-electric buses take less than 10 minutes to fully charge and offer significant operational savings over traditional diesel or hybrid vehicles.”

Foothill Transit in Pomona, Calif., is already operating three EcoRide buses – which have been in service since September of 2010. VIA Metropolitan Transit in San Antonio, Texas and StarMetro in Tallahassee, Fla., will be taking delivery of their EcoRide buses during 2012. Proterra is manufacturing these orders at its current assembly line plant in Greenville, S.C.

About Proterra

With manufacturing in Greenville, S.C., Proterra is a leading designer and manufacturer of heavy-duty electric drive systems, energy storage systems, vehicle control systems, transitbuses and fast-charging stations. Proterra’s systems are scalable to commercial buses of all sizes.  Its ground-up designs have led to the EcoRide, the world’s first full-size, 10-minute charge transit bus. For more information on Proterra and its technology, please visit: www.proterra.com.

 

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Agency contact:

JoAnne Laffey Abed, public relations manager
VantagePoint Marketing for Proterra
864.331.1265 or jabed@vantagep.com

Why Some Longhorns Won’t Be Riding Dirty (Buses) Anymore

June 27, 2012

StateImpact | by Sheyda Aboii

The wheels on the bus go round and round … but water is the only exhaust.

That’s what researchers at the Center for Electromechanics (CEM) at the University of Texas at Austin have to say about their new Hydrogen Hybrid Bus. The new bus will be featured as part of UT’s shuttle system and will alternate between the Forty Acres and Intramural Fields routes.

“The advantage is, frankly, that it uses less hydrogen. We take advantage of batteries to provide most of the propulsion power. And the fuel cell just recharges the batteries,” said Robert Hebner, director of CEM in an interview with StateImpact Texas.

The new bus, manufactured by Proterra, uses mobile hydrogen fuel cells to recharge a massive lithium-titanate battery pack that keeps the wheels turning. The bus was launched earlier this month as part of a year-long demonstration funded by the National Fuel Cell Bus Program, an initiative headed up by the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) to explore greener mass transit options.

Local and national partners including Capital Metro and the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) hope that data collected from the bus’s daily operation will better inform fuel cell technology.

According to program manager Michael Lewis, the new bus is equipped with a data acquisition system that will closely monitor the overall fuel economy of the bus. The system measures battery voltages and currents, hydrogen fuel consumption, energy and power flows to the motor from regenerative braking, and even air conditioning loads every second. Collected data may help to determine which features work best in terms of efficiency.

Fuel for the zero-emission bus is provided by a hydrogen fueling station, constructed in 2008, at the J.J. Pickle Research Campus at UT.

The station produces hydrogen fuel using a process called natural gas steam reformation, where hydrogen molecules are stripped from methane gas. The hydrogen gas is then stored in six high pressure cylinders on site which feed into a dispensing station that looks a lot like a normal gas station.

But wait — isn’t carbon dioxide a key by-product of natural gas?

“From a wheel to wheel perspective, hydrogen fuel cell vehicles, even if they are getting their hydrogen from natural gas reformation, are still better than your diesel engine and gasoline engine vehicles that currently run on the road today,” says Lewis. “Since we are making the hydrogen from natural gas, there are some CO2 emissions that are associated with that. However, the station centralizes those CO2 emissions so that, in the future, we can take advantage of sequestered CO2 for use in other renewable processes, such as growing algae for biofuel.” Algae is indeed a hot research topic at the University of Texas at Austin, but the station isn’t sequestering the carbon dioxide yet.

The Texas Electric Vehicle Program from The Daily Texan on Vimeo.

And Austin isn’t the only Texas city experimenting with greener mass transit. San Antonio’s VIA metropolitan transit system features three all-electric buses that recharge throughout the day using a battery fast charge system.

“The engineering question we’re answering today is, does it make more sense to put a fuel cell on a bus or does it make more sense to build the infrastructure for fast charge for battery-powered buses? No one has the answer to that yet,” says Hebner at UT’s Center for Electromechanics. “After we run this bus for a while… we hope to provide better information. We have models; we have theories; but we don’t have data. This program gives us the data.”

Currently, most hydrogen fuel cell vehicle research is conducted in California and New York. So Austin’s hydrogen experiment gives Texas an opportunity to do some of that research and development right at home.

Sheyda Aboii is an intern with StateImpact Texas.

View original article at: http://stateimpact.npr.org/texas/2012/06/27/some-longhorns-wont-be-riding-dirty-buses-anymore/

Proterra’s Goldman to Address Clean Technology Innovation at Washington, D.C. Public Policy Forum

June 19, 2012

GREENVILLE, S.C., June 19, 2012 – Proterra, the leading provider of zero-emission commercial transit solutions and maker of the world’s first battery-electric fast-charge transit bus will showcase its clean transit expertise in an upcoming public policy forum, titled, “Powering the Future: Moving to Cleaner Transportation and Energy Technologies.”  The event, which is sponsored by the South Coast Air Quality Management District (SCAQMD), will bring together key thought leaders in the transportation industry and academia with members of Congress to address how the public and private sector can work together to develop and deploy product improvements and spur innovation in the area of clean technology.  

This free event is open to the public and will be held on Thursday, June 21 from 8:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. at the Hyatt Regency Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C.

Noted environmentalist and Proterra director of business development, Joshua Goldman, will be part of a panel discussion focused on strategies for enhancing mobility, improving air quality and creating jobs through advanced transportation and energy technology.  Joshua will address Proterra’s vision for the future of mass transit and the important role government can play in advancing air quality through investing in clean technologies.

Other forum speakers include Rep. Henry Waxman, ranking member of the U.S. House of Representatives Energy & Commerce Committee; Rep. Earl Blumenauer, member of the U.S. House of Representatives Ways & Means & Committee; Rep. Grace Napolitano, member of the U.S. House of Representatives Transportation & Infrastructure Committee; Capt. John Holmes, deputy executive director of The Port of Los Angeles; Rob McCulloch, senior policy and legislative advocate for the BlueGreen Alliance; as well as representatives from the SCAQMD, leading universities and top companies, such as Siemens Industry, Inc. and Volvo Group North America.

“Desire and need for clean energy and environmentally-friendly technologies are at an all-time high, but desire is not enough,” said Goldman.  “It is critical that the public sector and the private sector work together to establish a clear path forward for tackling these pressing issues. Proterra is committed to leading the way in the area of green transit, in terms of developing and deploying clean technology and being willing to roll up our sleeves and partner with anyone who shares these goals.”

Interest in Proterra’s clean transit buses continues to grow in California and other areas of the country that are on the cutting edge of environmentally-friendly and lower total cost of ownership transportation initiatives. Foothill Transit in Pomona, Calif. began using three of Proterra’s EcoRide™ buses in September 2010 and is currently operating select services with their Proterra fleet.  Other cities anticipated to roll-out Proterra buses in the next six months include San Antonio, Texas and Tallahassee, Fla.

About SCAQMD

 The SCAQMD is the air pollution control agency for all of Orange County and the urban portions of the California counties of Los Angeles, Riverside and San Bernardino. The second most populated area in the United States, this area is home to more than 16.8 million people - about half the population of the whole state of California. Because the area’s smog problem is so severe, SCAQMD often finds itself at the forefront of the nation’s emission reduction efforts.

AboutProterra

With manufacturing in Greenville, S.C., Proterra Inc is a leading designer and manufacturer of heavy-duty electric drive systems, energy storage systems, vehicle control systems, transit buses and fast-charging stations. Proterra’s systems are scalable to commercial buses of all sizes.  Its ground-up designs have led to the EcoRide™, the world’s first full-size, 10-minute-charge transit bus. For more information on Proterra and its technology, please visit: www.proterra.com.

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Agency contact:
JoAnne Laffey Abed, public relations manager
VantagePoint Marketing for Proterra
864.331.1265 or jabed@vantagep.com
 

High-tech bus to roll into Burbank

June 12, 2012

Battery-Powered Buses Enter the Mainstream

June 11, 2012

A Tale of 2 Transit Systems: Battery-Powered Buses Enter the Mainstream

Nick Chambers | Scientific American

Better lithium ion batteries have led to an explosion in availability of plug-in passenger cars. And now, thanks to relatively cheap electricity and the simplicity of the electric drivetrain, electric vehicles have even more potential for use in the extremely cost-sensitive public transportation arena—a concept that is only just taking root.

In particular, two projects funded mostly by grants from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA)—better known as the stimulus package—are pioneering new ways that public transit systems both large and small can think about total cost to operate buses and their environmental impact in the burgeoning era of cheaper, large format, lithium ion batteries.

Different needs, same goal
Spanning from Pasadena to Pomona in an area east of Los Angeles, Foothill Transit is a large bus operator serving about 14 million passengers per year over a 900-square-kilometer area. On the other end of the spectrum is LINK Transit, based in rural Wenatchee, Wash., which conveys just one million passengers annually—but unlike the compact footprint of Foothill Transit, its lower passenger volume is spread out over an area about 10 times larger.

Both public transit operators place significantly different demands on their buses, but each has trained its long-term vision on battery power as a way to reduce costs, improve operational efficiencies and reduce environmental impact. During multiple-year electric bus projects that were funded in 2009 but didn't pick up steam until 2010 (and in the case of LINK, still aren't fully in place), the operators are using different equipment and battery technology to see if their projections pan out in the real world. The projects were mostly funded by ARRA grants, with LINK receiving $2.9 million (of which all went to purchasing electric buses and associated charging equipment) and Foothill receiving $21.3 million (of which only a portion went to the buses and associated equipment).

Lithium ion batteries are still not energy dense enough hold more than the equivalent of between four and eight liters of gasoline in a battery package small enough to put on a bus. Nevertheless, inherent efficiencies in the electric drivetrain enable significant increases in fuel economy. Whereas a typical 12-meter-long, diesel-powered transit bus might return between one and two kilometers per liter, the electric ones that Foothill is running average the equivalent of 8.5 kpl. After some quick math it is apparent that 8.5 kpl combined with 7.5 liters of energy storage is not enough to fuel the hundreds of kilometers a bus might need to travel in a day. To get around this, both Foothill and LINK have added ultrafast charging stations in the middles of their buses' loops.

Foothill Transit operates three 12-meter long, 35-passenger buses built by Greenville, S.C.–based Proterra. Each relies on batteries that supply 72 kilowatt-hours and runs on a 27-kilometer-long loop that handles 5 percent of the yearly ridership. At specially built fast charging stations in the Pomona Transit Center the buses can fill up within 10 minutes on their normally scheduled layover, meaning they never have to travel more than 27 kilometers between full charges—about half what their rated battery capacity can provide. LINK's system is similar, although it uses five, Ebus-built, seven-meter long, 22-passenger trolleys with 28 kWh-batteries that travel on two separate eight-kilometer-long loops and can be filled in about seven minutes with a fast charge at the downtown Wenatchee Transit Center.

LINK originally planned to have its electric trolleys up and running by late 2010, but issues with the battery cooling system and manufacturing of the fast-charging station delayed full operation until later this year—although the trolleys are currently running for about two hours each day without fast charging. "There's nothing off-the-shelf about our trolleys," says Greg Pezoldt, special projects coordinator at LINK Transit. "As the first electric trolley of its kind, everything we have done with Ebus we've had to develop and sometimes redevelop. Even with the delays we're still excited about it, and we have an ultimate goal of electrifying the entirety of our Wenatchee and East Wenatchee routes."

Cost savings achieved
It is no wonder LINK is still bullish on the endeavor: Pezoldt says a comparable diesel-powered trolley would cost about $435,000 and each electric trolley built by Downey, Calif.–based Ebus costs significantly less at $370,000. On top of that, diesel fuel for the same trolley on the same route runs about $1,200 per month, whereas the inexpensive and green hydropowered electricity used for the Ebus trolley comes in at approximately $100 per month—less than one tenth the cost. The biggest question revolves around battery life, but even with the worst-case estimates, Pezoldt says LINK still comes out significantly ahead with electric bus operation in terms of lifetime fuel and maintenance costs.

George Karbowski, director of operations and maintenance at Foothill Transit, concurs with Pezoldt. Although the price of electricity in southern California does not enable as much savings as LINK's—about 68 cents per kilometer for diesel versus about 31 cents per kilometer  for electricity—Karbowski says anecdotal evidence suggests the company is saving greatly in other areas.

"Given that our electric buses do not charge in the yard, they are actually available for up to three extra hours each day because they don't have to wait in the refueling line," he says. "Also, a typical diesel bus requires an inspection every 45 days that uses $1,100 in supplies and 10 man-hours. Our Proterra buses take three hours and don't use any filters, oils or spark plugs—or anything like that—and have much lower preventative maintenance costs." Karbowski also attributes lower lifetime brake-associated costs to the regenerative braking system in the bus, which uses the braking force of its electric motor to generate electricity, saving the physical brakes from as much wear and tear.

Greener transit
Although both operators are focused on saving money and increasing operational efficiency as the driving goals of their electric bus programs, they readily tout the green aspects of their projects as well. Aside from having zero tailpipe emissions, both types of buses use some of the cleanest electricity in the world. In Wenatchee more than 96 percent of its power comes from seven dams within 160 kilometers and—at a residential rate of 2.2 cents per kWh—is also some of the cheapest electricity in the country, thanks to the well-established public utility traditions of the region. California already has more than 20 percent of its electricity coming from solar, wind and hydropower, and has set a statewide goal of 33 percent renewable power consumption by 2020. But Foothill has gone even farther by purchasing 100 percent renewable energy credits to provide all the power for its electric buses.

Both transit operators plan on expanding their electric bus service and have received additional grants from the Transit Investments for Greenhouse Gas and Energy Reduction (TIGGER) program—an offshoot of the stimulus package. With an additional $2.5 million from TIGGER, LINK plans to buy five more Ebus trolleys and three additional fast-charging stations. With $10 million more, Foothill plans to buy between nine and 11 additional Proterra buses, resulting in the full electrification of an entire bus route.

Although Foothill and LINK have funded the vast majorities of their projects with federal grant money to this point—and have hedged against the risk inherent in being pioneers with that money—both say the buses and associated equipment are now at the point where they compare very well in terms of up-front costs with purchasing new diesel—or even compressed natural gas–powered buses.

The Ebus trolleys already cost less than comparable diesel-powered ones, and even the larger 12-meter-long Proterra buses carry a reasonable price tag. "Our initial purchase of Proterra buses cost us about $1.2 million each, but it will likely cost us $800,000 each for this next batch," Karbowski says. "Compare that to approximately $650,000 for a compressed natural gas bus and it's getting closer. With higher volume it will likely be completely on par soon."

Early results being what they are, other public transit operators have come knocking with an interest in the emerging technology. According to Pezoldt, Wenatchee's much larger neighbor to the west, Seattle, is learning a thing or two from LINK's experience and plans to invest in the technology in the next couple of years. In California Proterra just inked a deal with the San Joaquin Regional Transit District for two more of its battery-powered buses. Given that the pioneers' experiences have not revealed a downside yet, it's no wonder interest is rising quickly.

Read the original article by Nick Chambers at Scientific American: http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=battery-powered-electric-bus

Cap Metro launches hydrogen hybrid bus pilot program

June 07, 2012

Metro Magazine | Industry News

One of the most technologically-advanced buses in the world is about to begin serving transit riders in Austin, Texas. Capital Metro and the University of Texas Center for Electromechanics (UT-CEM) are to launch a hydrogen hybrid bus into operations among the UT shuttles as a part of a yearlong demonstration to test and further refine fuel-cell technology for public transit.

Partners recently involved in the project held an event to celebrate the kickoff of the zero-emission bus into passenger service this month.

The Austin demo represents the second phase of the project supported through the Federal Transit Administration’s (FTA) National Fuel Cell Bus Program and managed by the Center for Transportation and the Environment (CTE). The program aims to significantly improve fuel efficiency and reduce emissions among transit vehicles. The bus previously operated in Columbia, S.C.

The prototype bus, built by Proterra from the ground up as a zero-emission bus, has plug-in rechargeable batteries, a hydrogen fuel-cell system and an efficient all-electric drivetrain. Water vapor is the only emission. The bus will alternate among the Forty Acres and Intramural Fields routes.

The bus will be fueled daily at a state-of-the-art hydrogen fueling station on the J.J. Pickle Research Campus, the first of its kind in Texas. The fueling station allows for the on site generation, compression, storage and dispensing of hydrogen.

Data collection during the demonstration will be reported back to the FTA and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory for further analysis.

“By analyzing daily performance data from the bus and fueling station, UT-CEM aims to address technology challenges and further commercial acceptance of hydrogen fuel cell technologies,” said Dr. Robert Hebner, director of the Center for Electromechanics.

The demonstration in Austin is the result of a collaboration between local and national partners including: FTA, CTE, Capital Metro, First Transit, UT-CEM, Texas Commission on Environmental Quality,  the State Energy Conservation Office, Proterra, Gas Technology Institute, Hydrogenics and Signature Transportation.

View original article at: http://www.metro-magazine.com/News/Story/2012/06/Cap-Metro-launches-hydrogen-hybrid-bus-pilot-program.aspx?ref=Express-Thursday-20120607&utm_source=Email&utm_medium=Enewsletter

Proterra to Provide Two EcoRide Battery-Electric Transit Buses to San Joaquin RTD

June 05, 2012

Electric buses to aid in operating cost, carbon footprint reduction

GREENVILLE, S.C., June 5, 2012 – Proterra, the leading provider of zero-emission commercial transit solutions, in partnership with the San Joaquin Regional Transit District (RTD), was recently awarded a California Energy Commission (CEC) grant in the amount of $2.56 million towards an electric bus demonstration project valued at over $4 million.  This demonstration project will introduce the San Joaquin RTD’s first fully electric buses into service, reducing energy consumption, waste, and pollution in California’s Central Valley, an area of strategic importance to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

The grant award includes two new EcoRide™ BE35 battery-electric buses for RTD’s operating fleet.  Proterra will also provide the automated fast charging station for RTD’s Downtown Transit Center.  The buses and charge station will be delivered to SJRTD in the spring of 2013.

Proterra’s EcoRide™ BE35 battery-electric buses recharge in less than 10 minutes, ready to serve the community with clean electric powered bus service.  The 35-foot long buses are made of lightweight composite materials and are powered with state of the art battery technology.  As a result, the buses have zero emissions, run virtually silent and are 600 percent more fuel efficient than diesel buses.

“We are very impressed with Proterra’s innovations, and we are proud to be a part of efforts to provide environmentally-friendly and sustainable transportation delivery options,” said RTD General Manager/CEO Donna DeMartino.  “This project is consistent with RTD’s core values and strategic initiatives and is another positive example of how we can leverage new technology to protect our environment and save costs at the same time.  We are excited to begin operating these buses next year.”

This grant comes on the heels of growing interest in Proterra in California and other areas of the country that are on the cutting edge of environmentally friendly transportation initiatives.  In 2010, Proterra broke through California’s fleet regulatory requirements with a Federal Transit Authority demonstration project with Foothill Transit, in Pomona, CA.  Foothill Transit began using three of Proterra’s EcoRide buses (dubbed the ecoliner by Foothill Transit) in September 2010 and is currently operating select services with their Proterra fleet.   With reduced fuel and maintenance costs, Proterra’s buses are also an attractive option for areas looking to reduce their total cost of ownership and operating expenses.  Other cities anticipated to roll-out Proterra buses in the next six months include San Antonio, Texas and Tallahassee, Fla.

“Proterra congratulates the San Joaquin Regional Transit District on its forward-thinking approach to environmentally-friendly mass transit solutions,” said David Bennett, CEO, Proterra Inc. “We are pleased to work with them to become an important part of addressing the severe air pollution problems in the Central Valley while providing RTD operating cost savings in the process.”

About RTD

The San Joaquin Regional Transit District, the Regional Transit Provider for San Joaquin County, Calif., provides public transit services in the Stockton Metropolitan Area, as well as Intercity, Interregional and Rural Transit Services countywide.  To learn more, visit www.sanjoaquinRTD.com.

About Proterra

With manufacturing in Greenville, S.C., Proterra is a leading designer and manufacturer of heavy-duty electric drive systems, energy storage systems, vehicle control systems, transit buses and fast-charging stations. Proterra’s systems are scalable to commercial buses of all sizes.  Its ground-up designs have led to the EcoRide, the world’s first full-size, 10-minute charge transit bus. For more information on Proterra and its technology, please visit: www.proterra.com.

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Agency Contact:

JoAnne Laffey Abed, public relations manager

VantagePoint Marketing for Proterra

864.331.1265 or jheckman@vantagep.com

 

Grant will help bring electric bus to Stockton

June 04, 2012

The Central Valley Business Journal

STOCKTON – A local mass transit district will be the second in the state to operate fully electric buses.

The San Joaquin Regional Transit District and Proterra Inc. were awarded a $2.56 million California Energy Commission grant toward a $4 million demonstration project to introduce RTD’s first electric businesses, according to a RTD statement. RTD will be only the second transit agency in California – and only the fourth in the nation – to operate the new electric buses.

The grant will provide for two new EcoRidetm BE35 battery-electric buses for RTD’s operating fleet. Proterra is producing the automated fast-charging station for RTD’s Downtown Transit Center as a matching commitment to the California Energy Commission grant. RTD’s only responsibilities are the installation costs for the charging station and the administration of the grant. RTD anticipates charge station installation and bus delivery by the spring of 2013.

“We are very impressed with Proterra’s innovations and we are proud to be a part of efforts to provide environmentally-friendly and sustainable transportation delivery options,” Donna DeMartino, RTD’s general manager and CEO, said in the statement. “This project is consistent with RTD’s core values and strategic initiatives and is another positive example of how we can leverage new technology to protect our environment and save costs at the same time. We are excited to begin operating these buses next year.”

RTD’s EcoRidetm BE35 battery-electric buses will be able to recharge in less than 10 minutes, ready to serve the community with clean electric powered bus service. The 35-foot long buses are made of lightweight composite materials and are powered with state-of-the-art battery technology. The buses have zero emissions, run virtually silent, and are 600 percent more fuel efficient than diesel buses.

“Proterra congratulates the San Joaquin Regional Transit District on its forward-thinking approach to environmentally-friendly mass transit solutions,” said David Bennett, Proterra Inc.’s CEO “We are pleased to work with them to become an important part of addressing the severe air pollution problems in the Central Valley, while providing RTD operating cost savings in the process.”

Proterra is located in Greenville, SC, and is a leading designer and manufacturer of heavy-duty electric drive systems, energy storage systems, transit buses and fast-charging stations. In 2010, Proterra broke through California’s fleet regulatory requirements with a Federal Transit Authority demonstration project with Foothill Transit in Pomona. Foothill Transit began using three of Proterra’s EcoRidetm BE35 battery-electric buses in September 2010. Foothill Transit is operating select services with their Proterra fleet. Other cities anticipated to roll-out Proterra buses in the next six months include San Antonio and Tallahassee, FL.

This project supports the California Energy Commission Electric Drive Strategic Plan administrated by CALSTART and is funded through Assembly Bill 118. This effort also supports RTD’s Strategic Initiatives by reducing energy consumption, waste, and pollution, while fostering vendor innovation and new technologies.

View the original article here: http://www.cvbizjournal.com/general/local-news/grant-will-help-bring-electric-buses-to-stockton.html

Kickoff Event to Launch Proterra Hydrogen Fuel Cell Bus into Passenger Service

May 31, 2012

GREENVILLE, S.C., May 31, 2012 – Capital Metro, along with the University of Texas Center for Electromechanics (UT-CEM), will be holding a kickoff event to launch its innovative Proterra zero-emission, hydrogen hybrid bus into passenger service. The event will take place at 10:30am on Thursday, June 7, 2012, at the J.J. Pickle Research Campus at UT-CEM.

Capital Metro received this bus in early March as part of the Federal Transit Administration’s National Fuel Cell Bus Program. The goal of this program is to design and demonstrate a safe, reliable, and efficient battery dominant fuel cell hybrid transit bus. The bus had previously operated in Columbia, South Carolina.

While in Austin, the bus will operate among the UT shuttles – transporting students and residents around the city. Data gathered during this demonstration will be sent to the National Renewable Energy Laboratory for further analysis. 

Successful collaboration between many local and national partners is central to making this demonstration a success. Collaborators include: University of Texas Center for Electromechanics (UT-CEM), Capital Metro, First Transit, the Texas Commission of Environmental Quality, the State Energy Conservation Office, the Center for Transportation and the Environment (CTE), Proterra, Gas Technology Institute and Hydrogenics.

-more-

About Proterra

With manufacturing in Greenville, S.C., Proterra is a leading designer and manufacturer of heavy-duty electric drive systems, energy storage systems, vehicle control systems, transitbuses and fast-charging stations. Proterra’s systems are scalable to commercial buses of all sizes.  Its ground-up designs have led to the EcoRide, the world’s first full-size, 10-minute charge transit bus. For more information on Proterra and its technology, please visit: www.proterra.com.

Proterra contact:
Megan Finnern, Marketing Communications Coordinator
mefinnern@proterra.com

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Proterra participates in 2012 OPTA Conference & Trade Show

May 18, 2012

Greenville, South Carolina | May 18, 2012 – Proterra, maker of the world’s first fast-charge, battery-electric transit bus will take part in the 2012 Ohio Public Transportation Association (OPTA) Conference, Maintenance & Trade Show, May 31 – June 1, in Columbus, Ohio. This year’s theme is “Transit – Driving Towards Success.”

During the two day conference, OPTA members will have the opportunity to network, gain new insights, participate in educational sessions, partake in training, and interact with manufacturers and suppliers. The conference will be held at the Hilton Columbus Polaris. Proterra will be exhibiting at this year’s OPTA trade show and Founder Dale Hill will be in attendance.

“Continuing to share information on technological advances in transit is very important,” said Hill. “We believe that the Proterra EcoRide fast charge, battery electric bus provides a realistic, cost-effective solution to transit agencies across the nation who face increasing fuel prices and tightening emissions standards. We’re excited to speak with Ohio’s transit industry representatives on this topic.”

With its headquarters and manufacturing in Greenville, S.C., Proterra is a leading designer and manufacturer of heavy-duty electric drive systems, energy storage systems, vehicle control systems, transit buses and fast-charging stations. For more information on Proterra and its technology, please visit: www.proterra.com.

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For more information or questions, please contact:
Megan E. Finnern
Marketing Communications Coordinator
mefinnern@proterra.com

 

FTA: Proterra Fuel Cell Bus Report, Columbia Demonstration

May 14, 2012

Background

This is an interim report for an ongoing project. The report summarizes the experience and early results from an electric fuel cell bus demonstration funded by the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) under the National Fuel Cell Bus Program. A team led by the Center for Transportation and the Environment and Proterra designed and developed an entirely new hybrid electric fuel cell bus. The National Renewable Energy Laboratory was tasked by FTA to evaluate the bus in service. This report documents the early development and implementation of the bus and includes a summary of the performance results at the first demonstration site—Columbia, South Carolina.

Objectives

The objective of the overall research effort is to develop and demonstrate a battery dominant fuel cell bus, and to move the industry closer to commercialization of electric fuel cell buses. The objective of the report is to disseminate information about the independent evaluation conducted by NREL of the subject vehicle.

Findings and Conclusions

During the six-month demonstration period in Columbia, SC, the bus accumulated 2,947 miles and used 399.7 kg of hydrogen for an average fuel economy of 7.37 miles/kg, which equates to 8.33 miles per diesel gallon equivalent (DGE). As a result of the research conducted so far, a number of fuel cell bus components were identified for replacement or upgrade to ensure that the vehicle will meet performance objectives for the next phase of the demonstration. These components include the transmission, DC-DC converter, and battery management system. Once the modifications are complete, the vehicle will be shipped to Austin, Texas, for a one-year demonstration.

Benefits

This project has helped to introduce a new bus manufacturer, and new electric bus design, to the US market. The lessons learned from this project have been incorporated into Proterra electric buses being procured in several cities across the country. Moreover, by documenting the early development, implementation, and performance of Proterra’s newly developed hybrid electric fuel cell bus, the research results contribute to the larger endeavor of facilitating the development of electric drive bus technology.

Project Information

FTA Report No. 0003

This research project is led by the Center for Transportation and the Environment. The report was written and the evaluation conducted by the National Renewable Energy Lab. For more information, contact Sean Ricketson, FTA Research Manager, at 202-366-6678, sean.ricketson@dot.gov. All research reports can be found at www.fta.dot.gov/research

Original Report can be found at: http://www.fta.dot.gov/documents/FTA0003_Research_Report_Summary.pdf

Innovation in Buses: What’s Trending, What’s New?

May 05, 2012

BY SUSAN R. PAISNER | Senior Managing Editor - Passenger Transport

What’s new with buses? In the pages of this issue, you’ll find an array of stories discussing just that.

For example, smartphones play a pivotal role, such as using QR codes for high-tech bus stop signage. Texting (the safe kind, as in sending information to the police when you can’t make a phone call) is also pivotal. Sustainability figures prominently with so many agencies, including Cincinnati Metro’s green decisions about more efficient buses and Long Beach Transit’s (LBT)   retrofit of existing facilities. Innovation can take other guises, including the efforts by Phoenix’s Valley Metro and the Rhode Island Public Transit Authority to integrate specialized taxis into the effort to provide needed rides.

What else is on everyone’s mind, other than passage of a surface transportation authorization bill?

There’s state of good repair, with agencies working to maintain their fleets and facilities, and asset management, with systems doing their utmost to maximize the life cycle of their equipment, vehicles, and structures.

And what’s trending? Electric buses, compressed natural gas (CNG) fueling, engines integrating Environmental Protection Agency emissions standards . . . and much more.

Here’s a quick look at just some of what constitutes what’s “new and exciting” with buses in 2012.

All-Electric Buses

To begin with, there are all-electric buses, for which more and more public transit systems are putting out requests for proposal (RFP).

VIA Metropolitan Transit in San Antonio is ahead of that effort, having already purchased its new buses and awaiting their arrival.

“VIA is excited to bring completely emissions-free transit service to San Antonio,” said Keith T. Parker, president and CEO. “Later this year we will have three buses that are powered solely by batteries recharged with 100 percent wind-generated electricity. Operating these buses within the central business district emphasizes our commitment to reducing local air pollution. Because these buses will have zero emissions, they offer the cleanest operating technology from the source to the road of any buses we know of in the world, and further our role of introducing green transit technologies to the Alamo City.”

Also, Foothill Transit in West Covina, CA, made history in September 2010 when it implemented the heavy-duty, all-electric, zero-emission Ecoliner on its 291 Line. It now has an RFP out for nine more electric buses, with the goal of making that route an all-electric one.

“It’s not that we’re trying to be sustainable from scratch,” said spokesperson Felicia Friesema, “but we’re trying to be more sustainable and environmentally positive by exploring advanced vehicle technologies that improve our air quality. Making our vehicles more efficient only enhances that even further.”

CNG Fueling

There’s CNG fueling. Many public transit agencies are making the transition to this fuel, which in turn necessitates a comprehensive change in their fueling infrastructure. Our host, LBT, is just one of the agencies making this shift!

Trillium USA designs, builds, and operates CNG facilities for public and private fleets. Senior Business Developer- Transit Jennifer de Tapia noted that CNG “has a lot of momentum right now.” She cited the Roaring Fork Transportation Authority (RFTA) in Aspen, CO, which has begun a pilot project to become the first system to use CNG in a high-altitude, rural Bus Rapid Transit application.

“Clearly it’s the price differential vs. diesel that’s moving the market right now in such a big way,” de Tapia said. “For agencies having a tough time stretching their operating dollars, they are finding it’s a great way to save on their fuel budget.” But it’s not all about money, she added: “It’s domestic, so it’s a great source of jobs for the American economy. And there are environmental benefits as well.”

Dan Blankenship, RFTA’s CEO, did cite money as the primary motive behind his agency’s shift. “The main reason is we’ll be paying about a $1 million more for diesel fuel this year than we did in 2009—and we’re running fewer miles,” he explained. “In terms of our long-term sustainability, we need to move to a fuel that is less expensive now and is in abundant domestic supply.”

Right up there with cost savings, however, are two other critically important elements. “When you look at the need for the U.S. to become energy independent so that more jobs can be created here—and we can reduce some of our investment in national defense that is targeted that in securing the shipping lanes from the Middle East—it just makes more sense to move to CNG as a means of keeping more American dollars in America,” he said.

Marketplace Changes

Daimler Buses’ closing down of Orion bus production in the U.S. and Canada will bring about a significant change in the marketplace. [See related story on p. 1.] What that means relative to price and market share are currently open questions.

Buy America continues to be an issue with those who make and buy buses, as FTA and Congress want to increase domestic content for domestic jobs. This begs the following questions: What can bus manufacturers do with their existing supply chains? Can they find new suppliers in the U.S.? And what is the cost of verifying these new suppliers? What happens to the industry with that change? These and other answers will continue to unfold in the months ahead.

EPA Standards

Starting in the mid 1990s, EPA, in its objective to clean our air, focused on exhaust from cars and buses. “We’ve been reducing oxides of nitrogen and particulate matter since then,” said Tom Hodek, general manager, North America Bus Business, Cummins, “and now we’re down to nearly zero.”

Going forward, EPA has set a 2013 deadline for a vehicle to continue to meet emission standards through its useful life, which will require onboard diagnostics in engines. “This means that we’re going to have better troubleshooting capabilities with a lot more sensors, and we’re going to reassure that the emission levels remain where they’re supposed to be,” said Hodek. Additionally, EPA’s 2014 requirement is to continue to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, or carbon dioxide.

Cummins will meet both requirements in 2013. “Our business is engines and their subsystems,” Hodek said, “and emission regulations are one of the key elements of our business.” Rather than make one launch each year, Cummins accelerated its efforts to pull the 2014 EPA regulations forward. “Not only are we cleaning the air,” he said, “we’re also improving fuel economy, because as you reduce CO2, you improve MPG [miles per gallon]. They are directly linked.”

Texting for Help

What happens to a public transit rider who might be in a difficult or frightening situation and “See Something/ Say Something” just won’t work? Chief James Spiller of Dallas Area Rapid Transit(DART), working with information technology and media relations staff, came up with a way someone could text for help.

The text number, 41411, is the same one used by DART customers to find the next departure and arrival times for buses and trains at their stop or station. The difference with the police text service is that customers must start the message with the keyword DARTpolice—followed by 41411—to ensure it is delivered to a DART Police dispatcher.

“With the way people use phones these days, what we were looking for was a way to empower our customers,  and you see people texting all the time,” said Spiller. Those involved at DART thought it would work, and “lo and behold, we put it into operation April 6 and we’re having great results with it. It’s not being abused—we get 7-10 texts a week and most of those are legitimate. We haven’t had any problems so far.”

He provided the example of someone panhandling on the train. “We got a text with specs, and we responded back that an officer would be on the next stop.” The response? “‘The officer is on the train, and the person has been removed.’”

Full or Partial Enclosures to Protect the Operator

Currently, nearly all buses operated byMiami-Dade Transit (MDT) are equipped with the fully enclosed Bus Operator compartment door. “This provides an extra layer of security for our bus operators without hindering their personal interaction with patrons,” said Eric J. Muntan, chief, MDT Office of Safety and Security, who termed it “an amazing property that we put into our bus system.”

As part of a Transit CooperativeResearch Program (TCRP) project, U.S. representatives traveled to Europe and observed these doors on public transit vehicles there. A former MDT director implemented this concept in late 1997, with numerous engineering modifications made to the original design. In 2003, MDT installed the new revised Bus Operator compartment door in all its buses and new bus purchases.

Not only have bus operators and riders accepted the enclosure, but the number of assaults on operators has steadily declined. When asked if this effort could be replicated industry-wide, Muntan said: “We feel that this would greatly enhance the security of bus operators throughout the nation in other agencies.”

James Dougherty, chief safety officerfor the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority, called the enclosures “an advantage.” He continued: “They provide protection to operators from assaults and escalating assaults; it’s a lot more difficult to punch through it.”

Dougherty noted that there is a perceived negative side to these doors in that an operator does not have a viable alternative exit. “I believe, however, that the benefits to the operators outweigh the risks,” he said.

Read the entire article at:  http://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/APTA/g24531_apta_ptmay2012/

Proterra founder to discuss innovative bus technology at VTA’s 2012 Annual Conference & Bus Expo

May 04, 2012

Greenville, S.C. | May 4, 2012 – Proterra, maker of the world’s first fast-charge battery-electric, transit bus will participate in the 2012 Virginia Transit Association Annual Conference and Bus Expo. VTA is a coalition of transit professionals from public and private organizations who know that public transportation is important to the individual mobility, a clean environment, and livable communities. This annual event provides an opportunity to see new products and services, discuss current issues in the transit industry, and network with other transit and affiliated industry professionals. The conference will be held at the Hilton McLean Tysons Corner, McLean, Virginia on May 17-18.

Proterra founder Dale Hill will participate in a roundtable session to discuss next year’s bus technology. Entitled “Up & Coming Bus Enhancements/Innovations,” this peer exchange is scheduled for Friday, May 18th from 8:30 – 10:30am EST.

“Proterra envisions a world where up and coming bus innovations continue to gain acceptance in the bus industry. As transit agencies continue to face changing regulations and rising operating costs – specifically those around fossil fuels – we believe new technologies, particularly battery-electric fast charge buses provide the best solution” said Hill. “Proterra’s EcoRide bus not only provides the best total cost of ownership in the industry, it also drastically reduces carbon emissions and allows transit agencies to have a more predictable operating environment.” 

With its headquarters and manufacturing in Greenville, S.C., Proterra is a leading designer and manufacturer of heavy-duty electric drive systems, energy storage systems, vehicle control systems, transit buses and fast-charging stations. For more information on Proterra and its technology, please visit: www.proterra.com.

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For more information or questions, please contact:
Megan E. Finnern
Marketing Communications Coordinator
mefinnern@proterra.com

 

Austin, Texas, becomes home for new hydrogen-powered bus

May 03, 2012

hydrogenfueltoday.com | by Bret Williams

Austin Texas Alternative Energy

The city of Austin, Texas, has received a new hydrogen-powered bus this week, courtesy of the Center for Transportation and the Environment (CTE), an alternative energy transportation organization based in Atlanta, Georgia. The bus had previously operated in Columbia, South Carolina, in 2010. Proterra, a manufacturer of hydrogen fuel cells and large public transportation vehicles, provided the bus to CTE. The company believes that hydrogen fuel will play a significant role in the future of public transit in the U.S.

Texas showing more interest in hydrogen fuel

Texas has begun showing more interest in alternative energy recently. The state has had a long history with wind energy, but hydrogen fuel is beginning to attract more attention from policymakers. In Austin, the alternative energy is becoming famous for its uses in public transportation. The CTE has been operating hydrogen-powered buses for several years and believes that Austin will make good use of the Proterra bus.

Proterra bus to serve as transportation for Austin residents

The bus will serve as transportation for Austin residents and will transport them to various locations around the city. The CTE expects that the bus will help lower the cost of energy in Austin, as the vehicle does not rely on gasoline or diesel. A private hydrogen fuel station will be used to supply the vehicle with enough energy to keep it running. According to Proterra, the fuel cell used to power the bus can be fueled completely in under ten minutes and will provide enough energy to keep the vehicle running for several hours.

University of Texas to collect information of the bus’ performance

Hydrogen-powered transportation is gaining momentum throughout the U.S., and this trend is especially apparent in the public transportation sector. In an effort to catalogue the impact the hydrogen-powered bus will have on the city of Austin, the University of Texas’ Center for Electromechanics will be collecting data on the vehicle’s performance and how its presence is affecting the city’s economy. This data will be sent to the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, where it will be analyzed further.

Original article can be found at: http://www.hydrogenfuelnews.com/austin-texas-becomes-home-for-new-hydrogen-powered-bus/853439/

Proterra Hydrogen Fuel Cell Bus Arrives in Austin, Texas

May 02, 2012

Proterra fuel cell bus

Fuel Cell Today | May 2, 2012

The Center for Transportation and the Environment (CTE) and project team have announced delivery of a Proterra fuel cell bus to Austin, Texas. The bus was previously operated in Columbia, South Carolina, in 2010 and will now join Capital Metro’s fleet and be operated in daily transit service.

The Proterra fuel cell bus is unique was purpose built from the ground up as a zero emission bus, unlike most fuel cell buses which are retrofitted using a standard diesel bus chassis.  The Proterra bus is on the forefront of advanced transportation technology, with plug-in rechargeable batteries, a hydrogen fuel cell system and an efficient all-electric drivetrain; water vapor is the only emission.

Capital Metro President/CEO Linda S. Watson says they will be testing the bus on Austin’s streets over the next year.

The Austin operation represents Phase II of this project supported through the National Fuel Cell Bus Program (NFCBP), which is managed by the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) to assist in the commercialisation of fuel cell bus technologies. CTE is a non-profit organisation  that develops technologies and implements solutions to achieve energy and environmental sustainability.

Proterra is an American bus manufacturer specialising in zero emission buses. Hydrogenics Corporation developed the fuel cell modules for the bus and Altairnano provided the advanced lithium batteries.  Signature Transportation Parts and Service will assist with bus maintenance and operator training. 

Gas Technology Institute is responsible for upgrading the fuelling station in Austin, and the University of Texas, Center for Electromechanics is responsible for data collection and analysis. When the Austin demonstration is complete, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory will analyse all the final performance data and prepare an overall performance evaluation.

Source: CTE

Original article can be found at: http://www.fuelcelltoday.com/news-events/news-archive/2012/may/hydrogen-fuel-cell-bus-arrives-in-austin,-texas

Proterra Sponsors 2012 Leadership APTA Alumni Dinner

April 30, 2012

Greenville, S.C. | April 30, 2012 – Proterra, maker of the world’s first battery-electric, fast-charge transit bus will sponsor the 2012 Leadership APTA Alumni Dinner at this year’s Bus and Paratransit Conference in Long Beach, California. Hosted by the American Public Transportation Association (APTA), the conference brings together individuals from all areas of the transit industry. 

Proterra business development officer Joshua Goldman was part of the 2011 Leadership APTA class. He will be giving a short presentation on EV buses during the Alternative Fuel and Propulsion Technologies: From Procurement Planning to Bus Maintenance Facility Design Session on Monday, May 7th, 2:15-3:45 p.m. Proterra will also participate as an exhibitor in the Products & Services Showcase, Tuesday, May 8th, 10:30-2:00pm. Stop by booth #309 to meet the company’s EV experts and learn more about Proterra and its technology.

With its headquarters and manufacturing in Greenville, S.C., Proterra is a leading designer and manufacturer of heavy-duty electric drive systems, energy storage systems, vehicle control systems, transit buses and fast-charging stations. For more information on Proterra and its technology, please visit: www.proterra.com.

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For more information or questions, please contact:

Megan E. Finnern

Marketing Communications Coordinator

mefinnern@proterra.com

Proterra’s Goldman featured in APTA Member Profile

April 20, 2012

Greenville, S.C. | April 20, 2012 – Proterra, maker of the EcoRide fast-charge, battery-electric bus, was excited to have its Director of Business Development Joshua Goldman featured in the April 20, 2012 edition of Passenger Transport. Goldman was asked to share his experience in the transit industry in Passenger Transport's "APTA Member Profile." This is one of two new recurring columns that are helping to broaden the outreach of the association, part of APTA President & CEO Michael P. Melaniphy's vision. The other column introduces readers to APTA staff.

When asked what he liked most about his job, Goldman responded: "I’ve been very fortunate to be a part of facilitating public-private partnerships. I’ve also had the chance to demonstrate locally, nationally, and internationally the revolutionary products I work with. I’ve been able to work on truly “industry-changing” projects, not only seeing change but being a part of it."

Along with the Q&A, APTA (the American Public Transportation Association) included a short video where Goldman shares his enthusiasm for public transporation. This video was filmed at Foothill Transit in Pomona California, where three EcoRide buses have been in service for approximately 18 months. 

With its headquarters and manufacturing in Greenville, S.C., Proterra is a leading designer and manufacturer of heavy-duty electric drive systems, energy storage systems, vehicle control systems, transit buses and fast-charging stations. Proterra’s systems are scalable to all forms of commercial buses. Its ground-up designs have led to the EcoRide, the world’s first full-size, 10-minute charge transit bus. For more information on Proterra and its technology, please visit: www.proterra.com.

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For more information or questions, please contact:

Megan E. Finnern

Marketing Communications Coordinator

mefinnern@proterra.com