The 33,000-pound GVWR S2G chassis that will drive the new propane-autogas Thomas Built Buses Saf-T-Liner C2 received certification from the U.S. EPA and the California Air Resources Board, announced Liquid Propane Injection (LPI) system manufacturer CleanFUEL USA.
CleanFUEL USA, which also developed the first liquid propane fuel-injection system for the original Blue Bird Vision in 2006, said the S2G from Freightliner Custom Chassis Corporation (FCCC) has a carbon monoxide rating of 60 percent and a nitrogen oxide rating of 20 percent below EPA set standards for heavy-duty vehicles. The chassis, which includes an 8-liter engine built by Powertrain Integration from a General Motors long block, will be in full production by early September. In addition to the Saf-T-Liner C2, initial chassis platforms include a Freightliner propane bobtail delivery vehicle.
"We are thrilled with our emissions results and excited to move forward to production," said Wayne Moore, COO of CleanFUEL USA. "As the only propane autogas vehicle available on the market with a GVWR of 33,000 lbs., the S2G greatly expands fleet offerings using this clean and abundant alternative fuel."
The factory-installed liquid propane fuel system is supported through FCCC's nationwide service network. The S2G joins other propane-autogas vehicles CARB-certified with CleanFUEL USA's LPI system, including the GM 6.0-liter G4500.
CleanFUEL USA added that the S2G has undergone years of "rigorous and comprehensive reliability testing," such as validation of the complete engine assembly (including the heavy-duty accessory drives), engine durability tests, heavy-load testing and multiple rounds of high-altitude, and cold- and hot-weather testing.
"Our vehicles are held to an immensely high engineering standard, and the S2G is certainly no exception," said Bryan Henke, FCCC's manager of product marketing. "The countless hours that the engineering teams put into testing and validating each and every component of the chassis, engine and fuel system is paying off as we are now able to offer a superb propane autogas product to the medium-duty market."
Propane autogas, the leading alternative fuel in the United States, costs an average of 30 to 40 percent less than gasoline and about 50 percent less than diesel.
"We are excited to add propane auto gas to our offering of advanced green technologies. We look forward to the start of production in September of 2013 and meeting our customer's needs with this exciting new technology," added Ken Hedgecock, vice president of sales, marketing and service at Thomas Built Buses.