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Press Release



June 28,2023

Experience unparalleled comfort & advanced ADA design aboard the all-new Transbay MCI, starting June 28

OAKLAND, Calif. – The Alameda-Contra Costa Transit District (AC Transit) is excited to announce the launch of the all-new Transbay MCI D45 CRT LE, a game changing bus designed by Motor Coach Industries (MCI). 

This cutting-edge bus dubbed the "Transbay MCI", showcases a remarkable blend of sustainability, advanced technology, and passenger comfort. 

"The Transbay MCI represents a departure from the norm, and by launching this revolutionary new fleet of buses, our transit district is seamlessly combining safety measures with captivating design elements. This bus was years in development and, unfortunately, delayed by COVID-induced supply chain issues. Now that it is here, I am confident the Transbay MCI will transform how we commute across San Francisco Bay and chart a new path for an inclusive experience for all riders," says Joel Young, AC Transit Board President.

In the pursuit of designing inclusive public transportation, AC Transit has a rich history of collaborating with disabled riders. As a result, AC Transit launched the Accessibility Advisory Committee in 1991, which now operates as the General Manager's Access Committee (GMAC).

The GMAC thoroughly examined every aspect of the Transbay MCI Prototype, including hip-to-knee room and narrow seats; excessively reclining seats; a narrow aisle with potential risks at the second set of stairs; inadequate space for luggage and roll bags; and the need for handrails along the top and both sides of the rear staircase, especially for individuals with visual impairments or limited arm mobility. The committee's keen insights were sent to the manufacturer's design engineers for changes to amenities and accessibility features.

"The result is a light-filled and low-floor vestibule that is revolutionary in design and breaking barriers for wheelchair accessibility," says Michael Hursh, General Manager. "The stylized vestibule prioritizes ease of boarding through an all-new mid-cabin door, wider and brawny ADA ramp, enhanced space for maneuverability, one-touch automated securement, and it is built to accommodate the future design of manual or powered wheelchairs, as well as scooters." 

Another groundbreaking onboard ADA innovation is the Q'Straint: Quantum Wheelchair Securement Station. This intelligent technology gives mobility riders complete independence to secure themselves. The mobility rider centers their wheelchair or scooter against the padded backrest; presses the ADA-friendly button to start the automatic locking sequence; and the Q'Straint’s arms safely secure the wheelchair in place – typically, in less than 25 seconds. The Bus Operator releases the Q'Straint from the Operator's dashboard control, and the rider can independently exit the bus.

Drawing inspiration from the luxury and sophistication of jetliner cabins, every aspect of the Transbay MCI has been carefully crafted to provide a best-in-class experience for daily commuters.

The Transbay MCI features 52 seats with embedded headrests; jetliner-styled LED lighting; riders control cabin airflow through overhead air vents and stop request buttons are accessible to each passenger in the overhead panel. Two doors and staircases – front and mid-cabin – lead to a broader center aisle with integrated overhead grab rails that increase onboard safety. Each seat's armrest is fully collapsible by depressing a single release button. Also, like jetliners, the overhead parcel rack stows away packages or bags and creates more legroom.

The all-new Transbay MCI features three-point seatbelts. The Transbay MCI complies with the state of California's Vehicle Code § 27318, which requires bus passengers who are 16 years of age or older to be properly restrained by a seatbelt whenever riding. To reduce the risk of injury, AC Transit also asks that Transbay MCI riders always remain seated: standing is not permitted on this bus.

An easy-to-use three-position bike rack mounted on the front of the Transbay MCI, enhances access to work, shopping, services, family, and friends.

The new Transbay MCI emerges as a stellar example of meeting and surpassing California's rigorous Vehicle Omnibus Regulation (Omnibus Regulation). The Omnibus Regulation, adopted to cut smog-forming nitrogen oxides (NOx) from conventional heavy-duty engines, became effective in December 2021. By drastically reducing NOx, this innovative bus produces less emissions than most hybrid cars.

We are proud that our new coaches will serve as rolling reminders of the strides we can make when technology and regulation work hand in hand to shape a better, greener Bay Area for all.

AC Transit will roll out our impressive new MCI fleet in timed phases. The first 18 coaches will launch into revenue service on Transbay Lines E, F, G, J, and L. The fleet will ultimately total 36 coaches.

The future of Transbay travel starts June 28th. Welcome aboard!