Thomas Built Buses is set to expand its alternative-powered product offerings with the pilot production of a Minotour® school bus fueled by compressed natural gas (CNG). Pilot production starts now with the official production start set for early 2014. The new Type A CNG Minotour will be converted by IMPCO Automotive.The bus will utilize a GM 6-liter engine on the 4,500 series cutaway chassis. The 30-passenger bus will utilize Type 1 CNG tanks with a 26 gasoline-gallon equivalent fuel capacity. It will be CARB-certified and exceed EPA 2010 emissions requirements.
“We debuted our very first compressed natural gas bus over 20 years ago,” said Kelley Platt, president and CEO of Thomas Built Buses. “Since then, we’ve put more than 2,000 CNG buses on the road, and we are proud to add the new CNG-fueled Minotour to our family of alternative-fueled buses.”
The CNG Minotour will be converted at the IMPCO Automotive Union City facility, an ISO 9001-2008 certified manufacturing facility which produces on average 3,000 – 5,000 vehicle conversions per year. IMPCO Automotive is a division of Fuel Systems Solutions.
Thomas Built Buses, Inc., headquartered in High Point, N.C., is a subsidiary of Daimler Trucks North America LLC.