LIVONIA, MICH. (July 26, 2011) — ROUSH CleanTech and Blue Bird Corporation provided a peek into the future of alternative fueled school bus transportation as they unveiled the Blue Bird Next Generation Propane-Powered Vision school bus at the School Transportation News (STN) Expo at the Grand Sierra Resort in Reno, Nev. today.
Built on a Blue Bird chassis and powered by a Ford 6.8-liter V-10 engine with the ROUSH CleanTech liquid propane autogas fuel system, the Blue Bird Propane-Powered Vision offers 362 horsepower, 457 pounds of torque, and fuel savings with cost reductions of 30 to 40 percent on average compared to diesel counterparts. The bus meets stringent Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and California Air Resources Board (CARB) certification requirements. Developed in part with funding from the Propane Education & Research Council, this Type C school bus provides best-in-class serviceability, extensive optional equipment choices, and seating for up to 77 passengers.
This is the second ROUSH CleanTech collaboration with Blue Bird, which launched a Type A school bus offering fueled by propane autogas in September 2010, in partnership with Blue Bird and Micro Bird by Girardin. The Micro Bird G5, with seating for 25, also incorporates the ROUSH CleanTech liquid propane autogas fuel system proven to reduce harmful emissions into the air.
“Blue Bird’s Propane-Powered Vision has been the industry leader in alternative fuel offerings since its introduction in 2007. We are committed to providing state-of-the-art, reliable and efficient green solutions that our customers want and value,” said Phil Horlock, president and CEO of Blue Bird Corporation. “In partnership with established industry leaders, Ford and ROUSH CleanTech, the introduction of Blue Bird’s Next Generation Propane-Powered Vision will reinforce our leadership position by providing increased benefits and value to our customers.”
Operating on domestically produced, clean-burning propane autogas, the Blue Bird Propane-Powered Vision will help school transportation professionals take a step toward reducing America’s carbon footprint and dependence on foreign oil. Propane autogas emits 20 percent less nitrogen oxide, up to 60 percent less carbon monoxide, up to 24 percent fewer greenhouse gas emissions, and fewer particulate emissions than gasoline. Since propane autogas burns cleaner in engines than gasoline or diesel, the result is a potential for longer engine life and reduced maintenance costs for school transportation professionals. Additionally, with thousands of refueling stations across the country, propane autogas is readily available.
“ROUSH CleanTech is excited to partner with Blue Bird to roll out this new propane autogas technology,” said Todd Mouw, vice president of sales and marketing for ROUSH CleanTech.“Hands down, propane autogas is the right choice for school districts. Propane autogas is safe, economical and the leading alternative fuel in the United States.”
In addition to Horlock and Mouw, George Weber, president and CEO of Ford Component Sales for Ford Motor Company, spoke about the new school bus during the unveiling. More than 500 school transportation professionals attended the event. For more information on STN Expo visit http://stnonline.com/expo.