North America’s first automated heavy-duty transit bus.

Smart + safe mobility.

New technologies are changing the way we move and paving the way for cities that are smarter and safer. Xcelsior AV™ represents the future of safety in public transit and the latest leap forward for New Flyer, North America’s largest bus manufacturer.

  • 32-52 Seats

    With 2 wheelchair locations

  • SAE Level 4

    Society of Automotive Engineers Standard J3016 Level 4

The future of safety in public transit.

Xcelsior AV™ harnesses the zero-emission power of our Xcelsior CHARGE® battery-electric propulsion while integrating advanced driver-assistance systems technology to meet Society of Automotive Engineers Standard J3016 Level 4 technology with the automated vehicle.

It uses advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) technology, incorporating a distinct combination of high-performing AV technologies and sensors including LIDAR, RADAR, and cameras.

Xcelsior AV™ technology can be integrated with battery-electric and fuel cell-electric propulsions.

Xcelsior CHARGE AV bus image


  • 40′
  • Narrow A-pillars

    Narrow A-pillars increase visibility for the driver.

  • Braking

    The brake pedal has 3 sensors for “tap out” into manual mode.

  • Electronic Instrument Panel

    Industry’s first electronic instrument panel with LCD display can be programmed for customer specific messages or graphics.

  • Human-machine interface

    The human-machine interface gives the operator real-time detailed vehicle status information.

  • LED Headlights

    Industry’s first LED headlights have better visibility, and can accommodate many of today’s bike racks with no interference.

  • SmartRider™ Ramp

    SmartRider™ provides unmatched accessibility and kneeling to variable heights with less than 10″ step height when fully kneeled. The SmartRider™ ramp can achieve a 1:6 slope ratio with a self-leveling feature and is rated up to 1000 lbs.

  • Aisle

    Distance between streetside and curbside wheel wells is 34″, providing a wider and more accessible pathway for people with disabilities.

  • Narrow Window Posts

    Narrow window posts (5″) and larger windows with low window line (42.5″ in height) for greater visibility.

  • Rear Step

    Angled rear step designed for natural ingress/egress of passengers.

  • Side Panels

    Fiberglass side panels are continuous, resulting in fewer exterior seams, better aesthetics, improved manufacturability, better protection against water intrusion, and less body movement which minimizes rattles or leaks as the vehicle ages.

  • Hinged Corner Pillars

    Hinged corner pillars for easy access to components and systems for regular maintenance.

Meaningful improvements in transit.

  • Xcelsior AV™ systems work together to constantly assess the surroundings and respond quickly to help avoid collisions.

  • Precision docking minimizes platform gaps, helps ensure boarding is ADA-compliant, and increases accessibility for all passengers.

  • Efficient

    Precision docking and greater operating accuracy helps reduce damage to buses and surrounding infrastructure.


Xcelsior AV™ capabilities are made possible by two primary technologies: AutoDrive® and AutoDrive ByWire™.

The AutoDrive® system serves as the “eyes and brain” of the bus. It uses software, sensors and computers to process the world surrounding the bus, mapping the environment while making decisions that allow it to successfully navigate its defined route.

  • 40′

AutoDrive ByWire™.

AutoDrive ByWire™ can be considered the muscles and peripheral nervous system of the bus, serving as the “hands and feet” of the automated system. Hardware and software control the steering, brake, parking brake, accelerator, and gear actuators of the bus, ultimately operating bus movement on its route.

Capabilities of automation include:

  • Parking and docking assist
  • Blind spot warning (side, rear)
  • Lane departure warning
  • Collision warning (vehicle, pedestrian) and collision mitigation braking


In addition to providing enhanced situational awareness, Xcelsior AV™ systems can reduce the risk of accidents caused by human factors such as driver distraction or fatigue.

94% of serious crashes are due to human error according to NHTSA – and Level 4 ADAS technologies provide operation and monitoring that significantly reduce the risk of collision.

*NHTSA Benefits of Automation



New Flyer announced their partnership with Robotic Research in May 2019 with the goal of advancing automated bus technology through development and deployment of advanced driver-assistance systems in heavy-duty transit bus applications. 

Robotic Research is one of America’s artificial intelligence and automation leaders, with the proven ability to develop and deploy advanced ADAS technology. Through this partnership, New Flyer continues to collaborate with and support regulators and stakeholders on standards development and test protocols that integrate automated vehicles safely into the existing transportation system.

Plan for a safer future.

One day, fleets of automated buses like Xcelsior AV™ could not only improve road safety, they could shorten commute times, increase energy efficiency, and reduce congestion.

Explore more of what AV technology can offer your city, and learn what you can do now to plan for a safer future.

Quick measurements.

Tire Size
Wheelchair Locations
Approach Angle
Departure Angle
Breakover Angle
AutoDrive ByWire™
Includes LIDAR, radar, camera and processing hardware and software
Includes steering, braking, accelerator controls and actuation

*Passenger capacity shown reflects standard configuration. Capacity may change dependent on custom design and components used.