WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. — The Lion Electric Co. on Tuesday delivered five electric Type C school buses to a school district here for a pilot involving several partners.
The electric school bus manufacturer partnered on the deployment of the eLions with school bus contractor National Express, White Plains City School District, energy company Con Edison, the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority, and dealer First Priority GreenFleet.
“The White Plains City School District is very excited at the prospect of using electric school buses,” said Dr. Joseph Ricca, superintendent of the district. “With Lion Electric providing five buses to our contractor, National Express, our children will experience the most technologically advanced means of transportation and our community will benefit from the positive environmental impact. We’re anxious to roll out the buses in September and continue working to identify innovative and sustainable measures throughout our district.”
National Express will operate the buses and pay the energy costs during the school year.
“We at National Express are delighted to partner with both Lion and White Plains School District to deliver the first Type C electric school buses to New York state,” said Joe Baker, vice president of operations at National Express.
John Shipman, department manager of demonstration projects for Con Edison, said that school buses have unique potential to help maintain reliable service and a clean environment.
“These buses will provide clean transportation for students during the school year and be available to us for grid support during the summer, which is when the batteries can provide the greatest benefit to our system,” he added. “There’s a nice fit between the school schedule and our customers’ need for power.”
Lion has already deployed over 150 electric school buses in the last two years across North America, with more than 2 million miles driven, according to the manufacturer.
Tony Watkins, Lion’s vice president of sales, said that the pilot "would not have been made possible without the trust and vision of our partners."
"White Plains continues to confirm its role as one of the greenest school districts in New York state and the nation, and furthering its position at the forefront of technological advances," he added.
First Priority GreenFleet, Lion’s dealer in California, New York, and New Jersey, provides school districts with infrastructure, service, and technician and driver training, said Alex Cherepakhov, CEO of First Priority GreenFleet.
“We have helped many school districts secure grants and deployed more electric school buses in the United States than the rest of the industry combined, supported by the largest independent commercial electric vehicle service organization in the country,” Cherepakhov said.
Lion also recently unveiled a new electric midi-minibus and announced plans for an electric Type A school bus this summer.