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KAT Begins Switch to All-Electric Bus Fleet 
A torrent of transit transformation starts with a trickle.

Albeit, it's a million-dollar trickle.

Check out this photo. It shows Knoxville Area Transit's first all-electric bus, fresh off the assembly line and getting its first electric charge:

This electric bus is the first of 12 that will be arriving at KAT between June and September.

Here's what the same bus looked like earlier this spring, when New Flyer crews were building it:

KAT's first all-electric bus - now being assembled by New Flyer - is expected to arrive in Knoxville a few months from now.

And here are photos showing KAT's graphics being applied to the sides of the first bus:

Graphics being applied to KAT's first electric bus

Graphics being applied to KAT's first electric bus

This bus is the first of 12 that will be arriving at KAT between June and September.

As KAT's oldest diesel buses age, they are being replaced with state-of-the-art electric buses that, according to the Argonne National Laboratory, are about three times more fuel-efficient than a standard diesel bus (13 MPGDE vs. 4.4 MPG).

There are a lot of variables and factors, but KAT's goal is to have the entire 71-bus fleet running on electricity in about eight years.

“These electric vehicles are a great addition to the City’s overall climate plan, helping us reach emissions reduction goals,” says Isaac Thorne, Director of Transit for the City of Knoxville. “The vehicles themselves reduce CO2 emissions, and we hope they will attract more people to transit, further reducing emissions.”

The purchase of the 12 buses totals nearly $13 million. Most of that is federally funded, with $1.2 million coming from the Tennessee Department of Transportation and a City match of $1.4 million.

KAT employees will undergo hands-on training using the new electric buses as they arrive - both in the maintenance department and within the operations department. Operators will be trained in driving the new vehicles, and KAT will be testing the buses' capabilities throughout the city - so, at first, people may spot the new buses on different routes at different times of the day.

Some of the electric buses may be running regularly on Sutherland Avenue Route 17 as early as January 2022.
Posted by evreeland On 29 April, 2021 at 10:57 PM