Livonia’s Roush CleanTech, an alternative fuel vehicle technology company, has extended its alternative-fueled school bus partnership with Georgia’s Blue Bird Corp., an independent designer and manufacturer of school buses, through 2025.
The partnership started in 2012 and has resulted in 1,300 school districts operating more than 16,000 propane, compressed natural gas (CNG), and gasoline-powered school buses.
“Partnering exclusively with Roush CleanTech and Ford Motor Co., Blue Bird has led the way in bringing clean and cost-effective alternative-fuel powered school buses to the student transportation industry,” says Phil Horlock, president and CEO of Blue Bird Corp.
“Together, we have firmly established Blue Bird’s propane, gasoline, and CNG solutions as the undisputed school bus leader in alternative fuels. We are delighted to extend our special and exclusive partnership well into the next decade and look forward to bringing more exciting and differentiating products to the school bus market.”
The collaboration has made Blue Bird the first and only school bus manufacturer to offer propane, gasoline, and CNG from one common engine architecture, and the first and only propane engine in class 4-7 vehicles certified to the optional low nitrogen oxide level of 0.05 grams per brake horsepower per hour.
This is 75 percent cleaner than other manufacturers. The partnership also incorporates the first 100-gallon extended-range propane fuel tank, is the first partnership to market a large school bus powered by a gasoline engine in more than two decades, and the first partnership to achieve the Environmental Protection Agency and California Air Resources Board’s 2018 heavy-duty onboard diagnostics certification for its propane engine.
“We are committed to supporting the student transportation industry’s push away from diesel to a simpler, cleaner, and more cost-effective solution,” says Todd Mouw, president of Roush CleanTech. “This contract extension gives our customers and prospects the confidence that we are here for the long term and will help them achieve their economic and environmental sustainability goals into the future.”