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Florida-based public microtransit operator Freebee deploys Lightning Systems electric passenger vans

Lightning Systems, a global developer of zero-emission drivetrains, delivered the first two units on an initial order of six Lightning Electric Ford Transit 350HD wheel-chair accessible passenger vans to Freebee, an operator of on-demand public transportation in the South Florida region.

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Freebee serves local communities through municipal transportation contracts, using a microtransit model which provides passengers with free door-to-door rides.

The Lightning Electric Transit 350HD passenger van is ideally suited to the emerging microtransit model. Our EV powertrain and battery solution is configured and installed to support features such as wheel-chair lifts, aftermarket HVAC systems, and third-party seating configurations. The combination of performance and range, as well as the passenger experience that comes from riding a battery-electric vehicle, all contribute to making it a great choice for door-to-door transit in urban and suburban environments.

—Tim Reeser, CEO, Lightning Systems

Many of Freebee’s vehicles are in the low-speed electric class, but the requirement for higher passenger capacities and on-freeway operation has led Freebee to evaluate and deploy electric Transit vans. After an extensive evaluation, Freebee selected Lightning Systems.

Unlike scheduled transit buses, Freebee’s routes are not consistent. This makes it critical to know the vehicles’ locations and state of battery charge at all times. Lightning Analytics, the data capture and analysis platform implemented on all of Lightning’s vehicles, is key.

Being able to monitor the batteries in real time, and understanding how long it’s going to take to charge back up to capacity to continue on a route is extremely important to our business and our operations.

—Jason Spiegel, Freebee’s Managing Partner

Freebee’s choice of battery-electric vehicles aligns with their mission of reducing the carbon footprint associated with local transportation. This also contributes to municipal sustainability goals, as well as providing cleaner air on the roads.

The vans delivered to Freebee went into service almost immediately after delivery.

Lightning Systems designs and manufacturers all-electric powertrains for commercial fleets: from Class 3 Ford Transit vans to Class 6 work trucks and Class 7 and 8 city buses. All Lightning products are available today. The Lightning team works with forward-thinking fleets to provide high-quality electric powertrains on popular OEM chassis, sized for the customer’s drive cycle, with a full suite of telematics, analytics, and charging solutions to maximize energy efficiency.

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