Blue Bird to begin production of updated propane and gasoline buses with Ford 7.3L V8 and ROUSH fuel system
This spring, Blue Bird will begin production of its propane and gasoline Vision school buses integrating Ford’s all-new 7.3L V8 engine and a purpose-built fuel system designed specifically for school-bus application.
The advanced fuel system technology was developed by ROUSH CleanTech, the same company that has manufactured more than 30,000 propane and gasoline fuel systems for Blue Bird buses equipped with Ford’s 6.8L engine. The 2022 Blue Bird Vision with the propane and gasoline 7.3L engine features best-in-class combination of horsepower and torque. In addition, the compact and lighter-weight 7.3L engine should achieve improved fuel economy over the 6.8L engine.
In addition to the all-new engine, the new propane and gasoline Vision incorporate newly engineered routing of the wiring and fuel lines, centered between the frame rails for improved quality, simplicity of maintenance and product longevity. A newly designed grille also brings a fresh face to a familiar brand.
Ford’s new 350-horsepower 7.3L engine is narrower than the previous 6.8L, allowing more room for service work. Innovations for the fuel system, known as Gen 5, include stronger and lighter forged fuel rails and unique routing that keeps the engine-fuel distribution well organized. The system benefits from all of Ford’s performance and quality characteristics, such as horsepower, torque and towing, while maintaining the OEM factory warranty.
ROUSH CleanTech’s Gen 5 propane engine is certified to California Air Resources Board’s optional low nitrogen oxide emissions standard of 0.05 grams per brake horsepower-hour (g/bhp-hr). The Gen 5 system reduces nitrogen oxides and greenhouse gas emissions, which helps optimize fuel efficiency, and can operate on renewable propane, which further reduces emissions and carbon levels. The engine is designed to meet current and future emissions requirements.