'EV Fleets & Projects in TN' white background with blue text
clip art icons of various vehicles, green

There is a LOT of electric vehicle work going on in Tennessee! And while Drive Electric TN has jumpstarted some new initiatives and projects, there are many fleets and related projects that started years ago or that are brand new and on-going. This page catalogs the a) fleets that have various kinds of EVs at work, and b) projects of one type or another that are addressing issues or working to put EVs in front of Tennesseans. Read on…

There are more fleets and projects in Tennessee than what is shown below! DET staff will be working to add other fleets and projects in the coming weeks.

'Fleets', blue background
  • CARTA - Chattanooga Area Regional Transit Authority
    • Fleet of 15-20 all-electric shuttles used in downtown Chattanooga since 1993
    • New BYD electric bus use started in 2018, continues to expand
  • WeGo - Nashville MTA
    Small fleet of all-electric city buses
  • KAT - Knoxville Area Transit
    Small fleet of all-electric buses to start service in 2021 (New Flyer)
  • MATA - Memphis Area Transit Authority
    Small fleet of electric buses to start service in 2021
  • City of Nashville
    Fleet of Nissan Leafs through internal carshare program
  • City of Kingsport
    Small fleet of Nissan Leafs – first fleet in U.S. to have a police Leaf
  • City of Knoxville
    Small fleet of Nissan Leafs in city carpool
  • Harrison Bay Golf Course
    Only golf course in Tennessee to have electric fairway and green mowers
  • All state-owned Golf Courses
    All of Tennessee’s state-owned golf courses uses all-electric golf carts (over 600 in all)
  • KUB - knoxville utilities board
    • Fleet of plug-in hybrid bucket trucks
    • Several light-duty EVs
  • EPB - electric power board (Chattanooga)
    small fleet of Nissan Leafs

Specific Fleets… More Information

Chattanooga Area Regional Transit Authority – CARTA

  • Mass transit bus set #1 – Three, BYD 35′ K-9 all-electric buses – Obtained in late 2018 and operate on a variety of routes around Chattanooga. Have multiple-connector, low-voltage charging for each bus at their garage and buses refuel during evenings and occasionally during the day.
  • Mass transit bus set #2 – Four – (details coming)
'Projects', Blue background
Tennessee Tech Purple Logo

Tennessee Tech University – TNTech

TNTech has really ramped up their efforts to get more involved in all-things EVs in the past few years. They have multiple projects moving forward now that they are leading or a lead partner on and we are excited about their work!

  • Project #1 – “Developing an EV Demonstration Testbed in the Upper Cumberland Region of Tennessee, an Economy Distressed Rural Region” – This DOE-funded project started in 2019 and is utilizing five plug-in EVs – 3 Nissan Leafs, 1 PHEV F-250, and 1 all-electric F-450 shuttle – to showcase these EVs in the community and work to get community citizens borrowing these vehicles for up to two weeks(!) so they can learn how EVs work.
  • Project #2 – “Medium-duty eTruck: Pilot Electrified Fleets in Urban and Regional Applications” – This project is in concert with the University of Texas at Austin and both states will be shopping various medium-duty electrified trucks to fleets of various kinds across both states. Will start in 2021.
  • Increasing the number of EVs that are used on campus

Tennessee Tech. “EV Testbed” Project Spring Webinar Series

Part TNTech’s DOE-funded award/project “Developing an EV Demonstration Testbed in the Upper Cumberland Region of Tennessee, an Economy Distressed Rural Region”


  • HD-EMMA – “High-Dimensional Data-Driven Energy Optimization for Multi-
    Modal Transit Agencies” – The key contributions of our project are as follows:
    (a) we developed and demonstrated an efficient big data infrastructure of managing real-time telemetry data from transit vehicles at a resolution of 1 Hz and merging it in real-time with other transit related data including occupancy statistics and trip level statistics encoded in real-time General Transit Feed Specifications (GTFS).
    (b) We have developed large datasets that can be shared with the community to highlight the key features and covariates that effect transit energy performance.
    (c) We have developed machine learning models to be able to predict energy prediction of a future trip assignment depending upon the weather and expected traffic congestion at both macro and micro resolutions. Macro resolution focuses on trip level statistics and micro resolution focuses on vehicular dynamics.
    Lastly, (d) we have developed optimization algorithms that can use our data infrastructure and
    the machine learning models to help the transit agencies decide on an energy optimal trip
    assignment roster. Most of these works have appeared in peer reviewed articles. A list is available
    at the website of our project.
    Website = https://smarttransit.ai/energy.html

Appalachian Teaching Project – University of Tennessee

  • 2021-22 – “Charge-Up Appalachia: Strategies to improve Electric Vehicles along
    Tennessee’s ADHS Corridors
    -For two decades, the University of Tennessee has participated in the Appalachian Teaching Project (ATP), a program sponsored by the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC). Every year, ATP students conduct a class research and engagement project to help Appalachian communities address a local need or issue. UT is one of 15 Appalachian colleges and universities participating in the ATP this year. In early December, ATP students from all participating institutions will meet in Washington to present their research before the staff and leadership of the ARC. UT’s ATP class is taught by Dr. Tim Ezzell, an Assistant Research professor with a joint appointment at the Institute for a Secure and Sustainable Environment and the UT Political Science Department.

    This year’s UT ATP class will assess EV infrastructure along Tennessee highway corridors that are part of the ARC’s Appalachian Development Highway System (ADHS). They will also develop an EV infrastructure plan for at least one of the state’s ADHS corridors. This plan will include criteria for charger placement and possible locations. As part of the planning process, students will conduct field research in electric vehicles and meet with local stakeholders. Students will also survey residents along Tennessee corridors to help assess awareness of EVs.

    Some links:

    ARC’s ATP webpage: https://www.arc.gov/appalachian-teaching-project/

    ETSU’s ATP webpage: https://www.etsu.edu/cas/cass/projects/