Proterra’s New Electric Transit Bus Breaks Records at Altoona Testing


Battery-electric bus manufacturer Proterra says it has not only completed the structural testing program at the Altoona Bus Research and Testing Center but has also broken records on its new Catalyst bus for efficiency, gradeability, weight and acceleration.

While conventional diesel buses average 3.86 MPG, Proterra says, the Catalyst achieved the best efficiency rating ever for a 40-foot transit bus at 22 MPGe. Nearly six times more efficient than a diesel or CNG bus, the Catalyst is also 15% more energy efficient per mile than the closest competitors' electric bus on the same test, which translates to a lower lifetime energy consumption of 15%, the company adds.

Notably, according to Proterra, its new 40-foot bus is more energy efficient per mile than most light-duty trucks and SUVs on the road today.

The Catalyst also achieved a 15.5% grade, which makes it ideal to serve metropolitan areas with challenging topography in West Coast cities, such as San Francisco or Seattle.

Made of carbon fiber and advanced composite materials, the Catalyst weighs in at 27,370 lbs., which is lighter than any other electric bus, Proterra says, adding that the vehicle also achieved 0-20 acceleration in just 6.7 seconds.

‘To break not one but four records at Altoona is a major milestone not just for us but for the industry as a whole and is a testament to how far electric bus technology has come,’ comments Ryan Popple, CEO of Proterra.

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