Manufacturer Says It Will Be First with a Bus to LA Metro
New Flyer Industries vowed this morning to be the first to the transit bus market with the new “Near Zero” version of the dominant 8.9-liter ISL G engine from Cummins Westport for natural gas-fueled transit vehicles.
The near-zero engine, with California Air Resources Board-certified nitrogen oxide emissions at just 0.02 grams per brake-horsepower – 90% below 2010 U.S. EPA requirements – was introduced this past autumn by Cummins Westport (F&F, October 6, 2015). The technology is first being applied to the ISL G, which powers thousands of vehicles including refuse trucks and transit buses.
New Flyer said it would deliver an ISL G NZ-powered Xcelsior XN40 bus to LA Metro in this third quarter.
Two ISL G NZ Buses for LA Metro
LA Metro is actually to receive two buses, says agency alt-fuels specialist John Drayton: the Xcelsior bus with a 2017 ISL G NZ engine now being completed in Ontario, Calif., and a new New Flyer bus being upgraded to the 2018 version of the engine by Cummins Pacific in Downey, Calif.
LA Metro expects a per-bus price premium of $10,000 to $15,000, depending on individual bus builds and the 2017-versus-2018 versions of the engine.
‘A Win-Win for Everyone’
If the tests pan out, “It’s likely that Metro will migrate to the low-NOx engine very quickly,” Drayton told F&F. “We think this is one of the key strategies going forward,” he said: “a win-win for everyone.” Drayton stresses that ISL G NZ-powered will complement emerging zero-emission bus technologies, especially as the agency switches to compressed natural gas based on renewable sources.
“We continue to see growing demand for natural gas powered buses,” New Flyer executive sales and marketing VP Paul Smith said in this morning’s Near Zero announcement.
RNG Is Important Too
“New CNG infrastructure is being deployed by our customers as natural gas becomes more abundant, with the United States now being the number-one natural gas producer in the world,” Smith said. He also noted the growing customer interest in RNG/renewable natural gas.
“RNG is a pipeline-quality gas that’s fully interchangeable with conventional natural gas, yet can be produced by reusing waste products,” added New Flyer Engineering and Customer Services VP Chris Stoddart. “It can be produced from landfills, livestock operations and wastewater treatment.
“Combining this renewable energy source with the Cummins Westport ISL G NZ engine provides a powerful tool to significantly improve urban air quality, while, at the same time, also reducing greenhouse gas emissions,” Stoddart said.
A detailed study titled Game Changer by Fleets & Fuels publisher GNA/Gladstein, Neandross & Associates shows that the combination of Cummins Westport’s Near Zero technology and RNG fuel can make heavy duty natural gas vehicles fully competitive with pure battery electric vehicles on a well-to-wheels basis (F&F, May 10).
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Source: New Flyer Industries with Fleets & Fuels follow-up