Proterra's electric buses have been impressing since they rolled onto the scene a couple of years ago, posting a series of massive range-test results including a 1,101.2-mile (1,772-km) effort last month. The company has now announced a new dual-motor drivetrain, which it says will further increase the power and efficiency of its battery-electric buses.
When Proterra's Catalyst E2 max managed its 1,100-mile run last month, it set a new record for electric vehicles. The company has now confirmed that powering the bus through this journey was its new DuoPower drivetrain, which it claims makes the Catalyst five times more efficient than a standard diesel bus and 20 percent more efficient than its own standard drivetrain.
Featuring two electric motors delivering 510 hp (375 kW), the DuoPower drivetrain pushes the catalyst bus from 0-20 mph (0-32 km/h) in 4.5 seconds and up 26 percent inclines, which Proterra claims is twice the performance of a standard 35- or 40-foot diesel bus.
The new drivetrain also equips the bus with an efficiency of 26.1 MPGe and a nominal range of 426 mi (660 km), which as the company points out, would easily cover the distance of most North American transit routes.
"Proterra's DuoPower drivetrain unlocks new route opportunities. The link between Salt Lake City and Park City on I-80 through Parleys Canyon is an important route for us," says Park City Transit operations team leader Destry Pollard, referring to a hilly 32-mile (51-km) link between the two locations. "Now, with the new drivetrain, this is achievable with electric buses. We've been really impressed with the way Proterra Catalyst buses have handled mountain roads, and are pleased we can provide state-of-the-art performance, while preserving local air quality here in Park City."