Copper to be testing site for fuel-efficient buses |

Copper to be testing site for fuel-efficient buses

COPPER MOUNTAIN – Copper Mountain is going green with a new fuel-efficient bus to help transport skiers and riders.Copper Mountain has teamed with Cobus Industries as a 60-day testing site for one of the company’s vehicle models. The Cobus shuttle has a fuel-efficient engine, front-wheel drive for snow performance, low-floor technology for skiers’ and riders’ comfort and an aluminum-bolted body for longevity. All of these characteristics are being evaluated for effectiveness at the resort. The Cobus, which has been running at Copper since Dec. 20, can transport nearly 110 passengers. Copper’s current shuttle load capacity is 50 people.Extra-large passenger doors on both sides allow passengers to get on and off the bus in a minimum amount of time.According to Copper’s vehicle maintenance team, the Cobus uses about 1.10 gallons per hour versus the 2.05 to 2.14 gallons per hour of the resort’s existing shuttles.The bus was originally designed for airport ramp operations where the maximum allowable speed is typically 25 miles per hour. This also lends itself to the transportation system at Copper where speeds throughout the resort are limited for safety reasons.The Cobus is powered by a small 4-cylinder Mercedes diesel engine with 135 horsepower, coupled with an Allison automatic transmission. This engine was selected because, due to the lower speeds, the Cobus does not need a larger 6-cylinder or V-8 engine, which can consume as much as 10 gallons per hour. The Cobus will run at a maximum speed of 35 miles per hour while carrying its full capacity of passengers.The fuel efficiency of the Cobus results from the small engine using only a minimal amount of fuel at low speeds. Also, because of the greater carrying capacity of a Cobus, fewer buses are required to transport large groups of people.A biodiesel version of the Cobus is also available at the client’s request, ensuring an even cleaner exhaust.Chris Colman, Copper’s director of village services, said guests have been pleased with the Cobus thus far. “The Cobus has been a great fit at the resort,” he said. “The vehicle has run flawlessly for 30 days and works extremely well in the winter resort environment. We would be excited to add the bus to our fleet in the future.”Cobus Industries is part of the German based company, CONTRAC Cobus Industries, a supplier of buses to the airport industry and partner of Mercedes Benz. For more information visit Huffman can be contacted at (970) 668-3998, ext. 248, or at

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