The hybrid electric buses go into operation on Monday, 22 August. During the first week of use, customers will ride for free when a hybrid vehicle is used on their route.
To date, GM has delivered 364 hybrid buses to urban mass transit systems in 25 cities. Suggested improvements in fuel economy range from 20%–55% depending on the route and driving conditions, although some cities, such as Seattle, have had lower results. (Earlier post.)
The hybrid buses significantly lower emissions, including 90% fewer particulate, hydrocarbon and carbon monoxide emissions.
The hybrid powertrain technology in these buses has served as the starting point for GM’s co-development with DaimlerChrysler of a two-mode hybrid drive system that GM will launch in the Chevrolet Tahoe and GMC Yukon in late 2007.
In addition to the hybrid electric vehicles, CATS uses ultra low sulfur diesel (ULSD) fuel on 60 of its buses. The agency also is using diesel particulate filters on a select number of buses.