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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Amtrak debuts first-ever electric bus on Cascades route

By Amanda Zhou Seattle Times

Amtrak’s first-ever electric bus will serve the Pacific Northwest, transporting passengers on its Cascades line.

The Washington State Department of Transportation and Amtrak announced Wednesday that the bus will replace one of the diesel-powered buses on the daily midday fleet, which runs between Oregon, Washington and Vancouver, B.C.

The new bus, owned and operated by contractor MTRWestern, can make the nearly 200-mile round trip from Seattle and Bellingham, with stops in Everett and Mount Vernon, on a single charge.

The bus provides another way to travel between Seattle, Bellingham and Vancouver, beyond the popular morning and evening train.

According to a news release, the bus will save approximately 10,000 gallons of diesel fuel per year, resulting in a reduction of 109 tons of carbon emissions annually. The charging hubs are located at MTRWestern’s Seattle facility.

Amtrak said the debut of the bus advances its pledge to become net zero by 2045. Other routes within the national network are being considered for electric vehicles and alternative fuels.

“Adding a bus to our fleet that is powered by clean energy further affirms our commitment to offer environmentally friendly travel options in the Pacific Northwest,” Washington Secretary of Transportation Roger Millar said in a statement.

The Amtrak Cascades service was fully restored to pre-pandemic levels earlier this year. A new fleet of Northwest-themed trains will make its debut in 2026, hitting the tracks with an “evergreen and mocha” color scheme and graphics of Mount Hood and Mount Rainier on each car.