The U.S. electric bus market revenue stood at $469.3 million in 2019 and it is predicted to rise to $2,675.1 million by 2024. Furthermore, the market will progress at a CAGR of 58.4% from 2020 to 2024 (forecast period), as per the estimates of the market research firm, P&S Intelligence. The market is being driven by the growing requirement for eco-friendly vehicles, enactment of strict emission control regulations, long-term operational cost-benefits that electric buses offer to the country’s travel agencies, increasing efficiency and falling prices of automobile batteries, and increasing government support being provided, in the form of subsidies and funding, for electric vehicle adoption.
With the escalating air pollution levels and rapid environmental degradation, the demand for electric buses is surging in the U.S. The country is the second-largest emitter of carbon in the world after China, with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) reporting that the transportation sector had a share of 28% in total emissions in 2018. As electric vehicles do not have an internal combustion engine (ICE) or one which is used along with an electric motor, the rising concerns being raised over the escalating emission levels are fueling their deployment in the country.
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Apart from the aforementioned factor, the increasing government funding being provided for augmenting the adoption of zero- or low-emission vehicles is also driving the expansion of the U.S. electric bus market. For example, the Federal Transportation Administration (FTA) provided $85 million to 50 state and local governments in 2018 for incorporating electric buses in their public transportation fleets. The funding was part of the Low or No Emission Grant program.
This program and the State of Good Repair Program and Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement Program of the Department of Transportation (DoT) are some of the major federal-level initiatives that have been launched in the country recently for promoting the use of electric buses. Depending on vehicle type, the U.S. electric bus market is divided into plug-in hybrid electric bus (PHEB), hybrid electric bus (HEB), and battery electric bus (BEB) categories. Amongst these, the hybrid electric bus (HEB) category dominated the market in 2019.
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This was because of the long-standing existence of the hybrid electric technology in passenger vehicles, which was the main reason behind the earlier adoption of this technology in buses in comparison to the pure-electric technology. When charging type is taken into consideration, the U.S. electric bus market is categorized into inductive, plug-in, and pantograph. Out of these, the inductive category is predicted to demonstrate the fastest growth in the market in the upcoming years. This is ascribed to the fact that this charging method replenishes the battery of the electric vehicle faster than other technologies.
Thus, it is clear that the market will exhibit huge expansion in the coming years, mainly because of the burgeoning requirement for eco-friendly vehicles, implementation of strict emission control regulations by the government, and their ability to provide long-term cost benefits to public transport fleet owners in the country.
Market Size Breakdown by Segments
By Vehicle Type
- Battery Electric Bus (BEB)
- Plug-In Hybrid Electric Bus (PHEB)
- Hybrid Electric Bus (HEB)
- >40 Feet
- Lithium-Ion (Li-Ion)
- Nickel-Metal Hydride (NiMH)
By Charging Type
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