LISLE, Ill. — IC Bus will offer a propane version of its CE Series school bus in time for the 2015-16 school year, company officials announced on Tuesday.
The bus will be powered by a Power Solutions International (PSI) 8.8-liter propane engine. IC Bus officials said that the CE Series bus with the PSI propane engine is purpose-built for the school bus industry and is designed to provide diesel-like performance.
“Our customers asked for a better propane fuel choice for the market, and we answered,” IC Bus President John McKinney said. “Our IC Bus CE Series with PSI’s 8.8-liter LP engine will be the first school bus specifically engineered to run on propane without sacrificing power, performance or durability.”
The PSI 8.8-liter engine is engineered to deliver high torque at low speed, with a rating of 565 lb.-ft. at 1,500 rpm. Officials said that the high torque-low speed design benefits stop-and-start applications to allow immediate acceleration after stops and greater hill climbing capability. It reportedly also eliminates excessive noise, heat and vibration associated with constant engine revving, and minimal revving reduces engine wear, oil usage and maintenance while increasing durability and efficiency.
“The PSI 8.8-liter engine is an economic, low-speed solution that boasts diesel-like performance, high durability, reduced noise and overall wear with all the benefits of alternative fuels,” said Gary Winemaster, chairman and CEO of PSI.
The CE Series propane school bus also integrates the Allison 2500 transmission with FuelSense to maximize fuel economy.
IC Bus will manufacture the propane vehicles at its school bus assembly plant in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Deliveries will begin in summer 2015, and buses will go into service for the start of the 2015-16 school year.
The propane CE Series will be on display at this year’s National Association for Pupil Transportation Summit in Kansas City, Missouri.