Diesel-Electric Buses Come to Santa Ana, CA

December 14, 2000 by Jeff Shepard

Mid-December saw the arrival of a number of a hybrid electric-diesel bus to the Orange County Transit Authority (OCTA) in Santa Ana, California. Made by New Flyer (Canada), the bus is powered by a Cummins (Columbus, IN) ISB-270 diesel engine outfitted with a catalyzed soot filter and mated to an electric-hybrid propulsion system developed by General Motors' Allison Transmission Division (Indianapolis, IN). This bus, and another which arrive in late December 2000, will be integrated into the existing diesel-based bus fleet.

"The Orange County Transportation Authority is very enthusiastic about the new hybrid-electric technology," said OCTA Vice Chairman Mike Ward. "We think it will be very successful for us here in Orange County, where air quality is an important issue."

Currently more than 95 percent of the US bus fleet is diesel-powered, and the Diesel Technology Forum, of which GM and Cummins are a part, is attempting to bring together the diesel industry and market to develop cost-effective, reliable, efficient, safe and low-emitting sources of power for public transportation and other applications.