TriMet Unveils All-Electric Test Bus

TriMet held a press event today to unveil an all-electric bus.

The bus is on loan to the agency by the manufacturer, BYD Motors, for testing and demonstration purposes for the next two weeks.

I attended the event today, took a short demo ride, and interviewed TriMet and BYD representatives for this video.

The bus will be tested on a variety of routes with varying topography, and the public is invited to take free rides and give feedback. TriMet will be tweeting the routes served by the test bus.

You can also view TriMet’s press release here:

http://howweroll.trimet.org/2014/06/19/were-testing-an-all-electric-bus/

(It should be noted that the press release refers to 24hrs of operation. I asked for clarification on this and what they mean is that the bus can meet a standard daily duty cycle on most routes with a single charge – not 24hrs of continuous operation.)

8 Comments

8 Responses to TriMet Unveils All-Electric Test Bus

  1. Dwaine Dibbly
    June 20, 2014 at 5:48 pm Link

    68 would be a great route for some initial testing. It’s short (so if there’s a problem Trimet can bail quickly) and it involves going up & down Pill Hill. It doesn’t run for a lot of hours, either, so it isn’t a huge commitment. Once the e-bus proves itself on 68, Trimet can shift it over to another route.

    Plus, 68 is still getting some really crappy 1400 series buses, so come on, Trimet, throw us a bone!

  2. R Whitaker
    June 21, 2014 at 12:17 am Link

    Public relations stunt.

  3. Nick theoldurbanist
    June 21, 2014 at 8:27 am Link

    “Plus, 68 is still getting some really crappy 1400 series buses…”

    >>>> Are those still around in this day and age? The only high-floors I ever see now are 2100s.

    • Dwaine Dibbly
      June 21, 2014 at 2:13 pm Link

      Every day. Be at the VA at 4:06pm if you don’t believe me. I keep joking with the drivers that maybe we’ll catch on fire one day. At least one of the old workhorses would go out with some style! Honestly, it doesn’t really matter in the colder months, but we really don’t like the prospect of another summer of buses without A/C.

  4. R A Fontes
    June 21, 2014 at 11:08 am Link

    It’s a little sad, isn’t it, that this technology is coming from a Chinese company?

    • Joseph
      June 24, 2014 at 8:46 pm Link

      Why does it matter that China is emerging as a technological innovator? Are we supposed to be indefinitely the most innovative country in the world? The world… it changes

  5. Bob Richardson
    June 26, 2014 at 11:20 am Link

    Looks like the test bus has encountered a glitch.

  6. Adron via Transit Sleuth
    June 28, 2014 at 5:08 pm Link

    I’ve got two reasons I love the idea of electric buses. The obvious one, it’ll provide a cleaner all around experience around the buses. The diesels are just outright nasty. Just ride a bike behind one of those blasted things for a few minutes and you’ll be pulling over to take a deep breath.

    The other reason I’m stoked about the prospect of one day having electric buses is the diesel buses are also absurdly loud. Sitting in the back of a Trimet bus is just ridiculous on decibel levels. I know some bus makers (Mercedes for instance) have dramatically more ridable buses with lower sound levels, however an electric bus I can imagine resolves most of the problem at the source – getting rid of the blasted diesel engine. :)

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