Now that battery-powered buses are becoming more cost-effective and able to handle almost any urban routes, manufacturers are looking to expand their production to satisfy the demand from transit agencies turning to electric when updating their fleet.
Proterra, a manufacturer of large all-electric buses in the US, has been talking a lot about production expansion lately after sales being up 220% since last year. The company hired Tesla’s former Vice President of Manufacturing to lead the expansion at their facility in Greenville, South Carolina, and their new factory in Los Angeles County.
Last week, the company confirmed having secured an impressive $140 million investment to finance this important expansion of their production capacity.
Interestingly, Proterra didn’t disclose who led the round with a $40 million investment, but they did confirm that several existing investors already on their board have reinvested, including Tao Capital Partners, Kleiner Perkins, GM Ventures, Constellation Technology Ventures, 88 Green Ventures, Edison Energy, Inc. and others.
An additional $60 million came from several new investors.
In a press release, the company confirmed the new capital will be used for the production expansion:
With $140 million of new capital, Proterra will dramatically accelerate production capacity on both coasts, while continuing to develop its next generation of heavy-duty electric vehicle products. Proterra aims to increase production in its East Coast facility, located in Greenville, South Carolina, by 300 percent and initiate production in its City of Industry facility in Los Angeles County. Combined, the facilities will more efficiently serve customers around the U.S. Proterra will hire key personnel in Los Angeles, Silicon Valley, and Greenville to support production growth, as well as implement new manufacturing equipment and systems.
Proterra will launch the production of the Catalyst E2 all-electric bus with 350 miles of range on massive 660 kWh battery unveiled last year.