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Monthly Archives

August 2017

Propane Buses: Safely Bringing Students to School

By General discussion, Headlines

The ROUSH CleanTech 6.8-liter V-10, 3-V engine, equipped in Blue Bird Vision Propane buses, has the lowest NOx levels of any propane autogas engine in Class 4-7 vehicles. The engine is certified below the optional low NOx standard of 0.05 g/bhp-hr set by CARB. In terms of NOx emitted, for every one bus at the 0.2 NOx standard, there can be four buses on the road at the .05 level.

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Volkswagen Update: August 2017

By Headlines

Did you attend our webinar, Leveraging .05g NOx Certification & Volkswagen Status Update? It provided an update on the Volkswagen settlement and how it affects you, the dealer. A new tool was introduced that shows the cost effectiveness of propane in terms of NOx emissions. This tool can help with your beneficiary outreach to make the case for propane school buses even stronger.

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Press Conference Promotes Fulton County Schools’ Receipt of 10K Blue Bird Propane Bus

By Headlines

Last month, we celebrated Blue Bird’s 10,000th propane bus! We joined Fulton County Schools, the recipient of that bus, to host a press conference to get the news out. But this was no ordinary press conference. The school district already had a back-to-school event planned, and we needed to integrate the propane bus messaging — and gain media coverage.

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Medium-Duty Sales Keep Climbing in July

By Headlines

In related Class 7 news, truck body builder Mickey Truck Bodies and alternative fuel system provider Roush CleanTech developed a propane-powered 2017 Ford F-750 side-load beverage truck with electric doors. It will debut at the BevOps Fleet Summit Sept. 19-22 in Phoenix. The propane-powered 6.8-liter engine emits less than 0.05 gram of nitrogen oxides per brake horsepower-hour, the companies said in a joint statement.

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Dealer Spotlight: Central States Bus Sales

By General discussion

Dealer Spotlight: Central States Bus Sales

Interviewee: Jeff ReitzCentral States Dealer Spotlight. August 2017

Title: President and CEO

Q. How do you introduce propane-fueled buses to prospective customers?

A. At the first meeting, we gauge the customer’s interest in alternative fuels. Some of our customers have done all their research and are way ahead of the game. They are open to options and we bring up propane to see if there is a fit. Other customers are not as interested in alternative fuel options. But, we do bring it up to see if they are open to it and go from there. Our goal is to make the discussion, and ultimately the purchase, as easy as possible for our customers.

Q. Have you seen a lot of interest in gasoline and / or propane?

A. We talk both propane and gasoline with our customers to see what fits their comfort level. We have seen a lot of interest in gasoline-fueled buses, especially among school districts with smaller fleets. It’s not as risky in their minds and from their board’s standpoint.

With propane, most everyone is interested in the quick heating and cold start benefits, which gives us an opportunity to review other benefits, too.

Q. Who do you meet with when trying to sell a district on propane?

A. We will meet with anyone and everyone throughout the district! We’ve spoken to school boards, transportation directors and technicians. Whatever it takes. The key is to have a demo propane or gasoline bus there to let them drive it, see it and be comfortable with it.

Q. What convinced you to sell alt fuels?

A. We started with a couple small customers on the propane side and took the time to do testing. Once we were comfortable with the data we collected and the performance of the buses, we were ready to sell propane buses on a larger scale. Our data collection also helps us calculate the total cost of ownership for customers. We can outline their total costs to adopt propane so they can budget.

Q. What advice would you give to other dealers to increase alt fuel sales?

A. It comes down to believing in the product yourself. When you believe in it, your customers will, too. If you’re not personally sold, I’d suggest you learn the benefits and how it can help your customers. Find the solution that is worthwhile for them, whether it’s propane or gasoline.