I would hope they go with Xcelsior. Hopefully VIA has learned to never put all your money into a bus company they have never dealt with before. To me this means they will not go Gillig, and that leaves New Flyer as the winner.
The first half of the fleet that was here for last summer faired pretty well in the heat. For whatever reasons there are other problems with these buses. I have noticed LOTS of screws coming undone all over the bus (inside and out). Frequent breakdowns include low air, steering problems (wobbly steering wheel above speeds of 30 MPH), door issues, check engine lights, and LOTS of rattling inside the bus because hoses and air lines are coming loose from their securement. In fact, VIA had to send 2 buses out to a Cummins shop because the mechanical issues were hard for our maintenance team to figure out (and the maintenance team does a great job of solving any breakdown with buses). The final straw was during the "ice storm" a couple of weeks ago when NONE of the buses would start. I was told that the NABI and Xcelsior CNG buses started with no issues, but the Nova's were the issue.
On top of that, a majority of the drivers hate the Nova's (myself included). Some of the features are ok, however overall I don't think it was designed well. Glares on the windshield are harsh and there are a few blind spots with the corners and driver's window. On top of that, in order to kneel the bus the parking brake has to be set and transmission placed into neutral. This is the worst feature that all drivers hate the most. This is not an issue with the NABI's and New Flyer's. Also of note, the Nova's frequently bottom out at certain driveways and dips. Again, not an issue with the NABI's and New Flyer's. In fact, there is only 1 bus route (515 Southcross) that the Nova's are not allowed on because of a steep grade by railroad tracks. Only New Flyer's are allowed.