INDIANAPOLIS. Kiessling Transit has purchased 35 vehicles with hydraulic hybrid systems from Lightning Hybrids. The sale is the largest single order to date for the system, Lightning Hybrids announced on Thursday at the NTEA Work Truck Show here.
According to the manufacturer, the system showed a 30% increase in fuel efficiency during a year-long pilot program run by Kiessling.
Kiessling is a Massachusetts-based special needs transportation company.
Kiessling Transit’s vehicles, featuring new 2015 and 2016 model year Ford E-450 chassis and Elkhart Coach bodies, will have the Lightning Hybrids patented parallel hybrid system installed prior to delivery this summer.
The technology, which has no electric batteries, applies a hydraulic system to the driveline of a vehicle to regenerate braking energy. Hydraulic pumps and a lightweight accumulator store braking energy and use the stored energy to power the wheels. The application of this technology will result in improved emissions, less fuel use, longer brake life, better low-end torque, and lower maintenance and operational costs, Lightning Hybrids said.
“This partnership with Kiessling Transit is a significant milestone for Lightning Hybrids and a testament to the success and benefits of our system in providing a cost-effective and elegant solution for large fleets,” said Tim Reeser, president and co-founder, Lightning Hybrids. “Kiessling Transit is an innovative, early adopter and was one of the first customers to trial our technology for over a year. Their positive experience and attractive results during the pilot program lead to this substantial follow-on order. This program will demonstrate that it’s possible today to make existing fleet vehicles significantly cleaner and more efficient with a high-tech, computer controlled system built on proven and sustainable hydraulic technology.”
“Kiessling Transit is excited to incorporate vehicles with Lightning Hybrids’ technology into our fleet. We are pleased with the results of the pilot program, which proved a fuel economy gain of around 30% all year, and we look forward to seeing the positive results continue on a much larger scale,” said Roger Kiessling, chief operations officer, Kiessling Transit. “Our company is focused on providing the most efficient, reliable, environmentally friendly transportation to the areas we serve, and the Lightning Hybrids system supports this goal.”