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Ben Franklin Transit (BFT)is working with Southern California-based Complete Coach Works (CCW) to develop an all-electric remanufactured transit bus that has the capability of going more than 100 miles.

Ben Franklin Transit’s bus, when completed, will have all electrical components, auxiliary wiring, seats, air conditioning systems and flooring replaced with high quality new parts. The all-electric drive system, motor, controller and advanced Li-ion battery packs will be installed, as will a new, energy efficient air conditioning system.

The remanufacturing process is so detailed and complete that the bus will be issued a new title and current year registration. Because CCW made a point to source as many U.S. parts and components as possible, the bus is “Buy America” compliant.

Ben Franklin Transit, in collaboration with CCW, evaluated the bus route that will benefit the most from the deployment of the electric transit bus. Ben Franklin Transit Route 23/26 is currently a good fit for this all-electric transit bus. Because of frequent stops within a total eight-mile loop and low average speed, the route provides ideal conditions for the regenerative braking-enabled ZEPS bus.

For more information, An earlier 2012 article on the remanufactured electric bus from CCW is here:


Complete Coach Works (CCW) debuted its new zero-emission propulsion system (ZEPS) on a remanufactured all-electric transit bus at the 2012 Alternative Clean Transportation Expo in Long Beach, Calif., in mid-May.

The standard 40-foot transit bus is expected to have a range of 120 to 150 miles, which represents a major move towards the range of a diesel bus, says Macy Neshati, VP, sales and marketing for CCW, adding that with that range the bus will meet the route profile of the vast majority of transit systems.

The ZEPS system features a highly integrated design with fewer parts for convenient and fast installation; an integrated controller, with built-in energy management functions; computer-controlled synchronous clutch for long life; and regenerative braking capability all within a compact design, ideal for retrofit purposes.

The remanufactured bus, built to like-new condition, includes numerous updates, including:

  • Light weight composite subfloors and brand new flooring
  • All new multiplex system and all new wiring
  • Completely remanufactured suspension and brake system with all moving and wear items replaced with new
  • The differential is remanufactured to OEM specifications
  • A like-new interior with new seat upholstery, and side and ceiling panels refinished to the transit systems color schemes
  • A redesigned dash featuring a touch screen energy monitoring system

Other retrofit details include a remanufactured chassis frame and structure to like-new condition and the application of high-quality paint and graphics, as well as new tires and wheels, rebuilt windows, door systems and wheelchair ramps.

"We are striving for a price point of of roughly $475,000 to $500,000 for The fully rehabbed bus with the ZEPS drive, half of what a new electric bus would cost," said Neshati.


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  • 1 month later...

Very interesting Knowba! Muchas gracias. I'd like to see this posted to the Ben Franklin Transit thread, since they are the first buyers of one of these buses. They get a mention in the video.

The bus right now can go about 90 miles on a 4 hour charge. Lithium Iron Phosphate batteries.

Nice looking refurbished New Flyer LF!

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  • 9 months later...
A Utah State University (USU) technology spin-out, WAVE Technologies Inc. (video) is slated to deploy its first commercial electrically-powered bus, furnished by Complete Coach Works, in the coming weeks on the University of Utah (U of U) campus.


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  • 4 months later...
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During the 2015 Nor Cal Bus Fans excursion, we actually stopped by CCW. I found a lot of Ex-San Francisco Airport 1997 New Flyer D40LFs parked there. Those have Detroit Series 50's. I also saw Ex-Golden Gate Transit 1181 (1991 TMC RTS with a Series 50) parked there (which was bought from an auction in Dec. 2014). I barely got some pictures through the gate. Here they are:




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  • 9 months later...

Gardena is the latest to get a ZEPS rebuild. One of their (presumably 2005) GE40LF buses was completed in September. According to the press release, Gardena received a California Energy Commission grant to upgrade four more of their buses.

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  • 4 years later...

Well, 7 years later, here's what's become of the Utah ZEPS Gillig:



2013 Gillig ZEPSLF40E Bus - Diesel Converted to Electric.

This bus was purchased to use new experimental technology. At this point, the batteries are not holding their charge as long as expected and diagnostic and repair costs are prohibitive. The transferring department indicates that the bus still runs and takes a charge. Heavy A/C and heater usage causes too much of a battery drain for the unit to continue being used for it's intended purpose.


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