Kiel Seats part of largest refurbished electric fleet in North America

Kiel delivers 819 lightweight seats for optimal fuel consumption for Indianapolis Public Transportation Corporation; Fleet of 21 refurbished electric buses sets entirely new standards in transportation sustainability

Elkhart (Indiana), July 16, 2015. Kiel North America, a trendsetting seat provider to transit systems around the world, announced today that the company is delivering its lightweight, fuel-saving seating solutions for one of North America’s greenest fleets in public transportation. The project is developed in collaboration with Complete Coach Works (CCW), the largest U.S. bus remanufacturing and rehabilitation company, and will be introduced to Indianapolis Public Transportation Corporation (IndyGo) customers this year.

The recent acquisition of en entirely green fleet marks a historic change even for IndyGo who has a long-standing commitment to incorporate environmentally sustainable practices into its operations. “This project is coming at a time when our ridership is at a record high, with over 10 million trips in 2014. The project is another opportunity to show the forward thinking and progressive work being done, creating more interest in public transportation,” said Mike Terry, President and CEO at IndyGo.

In an effort to increase service to customers and operational savings at the same time while being kind to the environment, refurbishing existing buses into Zero Emission Propulsion System vehicles (ZEPS) was an ideal choice. Remanufacturing vehicles not only saves valuable resources and reduces carbon emissions that would go into the manufacturing process of brand new buses, but can be a huge budget saver as well.

The nation’s largest remanufactured bus fleet runs on lithium-ion batteries that will be recharged by a newly installed array of high-efficiency solar panels located on the main garage of the transportation corporation. Unlike vehicles powered with diesel, IndyGo’s electric buses omit no harmful CO2-gases or noise in an effort to reduce air and noise pollution.

In order for the buses to have a range of 130 miles per charge it was imperative to keep the overall weight of the vehicles as low as possible. Using a lightweight seating option for each of the ZEPS’s 39 passenger seats has been a key factor in creating what is likely the most energy efficient public transportation fleet in North America. With IDEO, Complete Coach Works incorporated one of Kiel’s most popular seating model for city transport solutions to create a trailblazing high-tech, low-impact fleet for the ridership of Indianapolis’ capital. 

“This project is proving to be one of our most ambitious yet,” commented Richard Sullivan, Vice President of Sales and Marketing at Complete Coach Works.“Such a lightweight all-electric bus could not be executed without innovative materials, and Kiel North America was the perfect company to partner up with for quality seating.”

Left on purpose without upholstery option, each double seat weighs only 45 lbs. yet provides an optimum of comfort for riders through its ergonomically formed design. The slim contour of the seat’s back offers a maximum of legroom for passengers and enhanced accessibility getting in and out of the seat. Designed as a modular system, IDEO’s innovative pedestal mounting system adapts effortlessly to almost any installation requirement, which provides a time and cost saving advantage during the design and installation process, and further reduces operational costs by being extremely easy to clean, replace, and maintain. Easy-to-use, ADA-compliant flip-up seats to accommodate passengers in wheelchairs round off the top-quality features of the seat that Kiel manufactures at its production plant in Indiana.

“The vision and dedication of both IndyGo and CCW leaders to make this project come to fruition is truly amazing, and it was a great honor for us to be part of it,” comments Thomas Schwank, General Manager of Kiel North America. “It shows that energy efficiency, operational savings, and sustainability can go hand in hand to provide customers with increased value also in the long term. It truly defines the 21st  century for public transportation.”


About Kiel

Founded in 1945 in Nördlingen, Germany, Kiel is a leading manufacturer of innovative passenger seating systems for commercial vehicles and public transportation, including seating solutions for buses and trains on the local, regional, and intercity level. Kiel seats distinguish themselves with their high quality, sophisticated technology, and their contemporary design while meeting the highest requirements both in safety and passenger comfort. Kiel conducts business worldwide with manufacturing facilities in the United States, Germany, Poland, Netherlands, Italy, Spain, and Turkey and dedicated sales teams in Greece, France, Austria, and the UK.


About Complete Coach Works

Complete Coach Works is the largest U.S. bus remanufacturing and rehabilitation company and the leading provider of a vast array of transportation solutions with over 28 years of dedicated service in the transportation industry. Not only is CCW a pioneer in the business, but continually strives to provide cleaner air through innovative design and engineering resulting in the world’s first and only remanufactured all-electric battery powered bus. Developed exclusively by CCW, the ZEPS technology was integrated in order to provide customers an affordable route to eco-friendly transportation, potentially revolutionizing the transportation industry while supporting the environment for future generations. Regardless of how small or large the job, CCW provides an exceptionally experienced team of over 350 experts, committed to customer service and satisfaction. For more information about the ZEPS electric bus and other services, please visit www.CompleteCoach.com/electric-bus.


About IndyGo

 IndyGo, the Indianapolis Public Transportation Corporation, provides public bus transit services to residents and visitors throughout Marion County. IndyGo is led by President and Chief Executive Officer, Mike Terry, and a seven-member, bipartisan board appointed by the Mayor of Indianapolis and the City-County Council of Indianapolis and Marion County. On its 31 local service fixed routes IndyGo provided 10.29M passenger trips in 2014.


Media Contact:

Susa Quinn


Head of Corporate Communications

Cell: +1 478-230-3347

E-Mail: squinn@kielna.com