Electric Vehicles International (EVI), joined by Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E), unveiled the utility industry’s first electric hybrid drivetrain Class 5 trucks at the manufacturer’s facility in Stockton.
The Range Extended Electric Vehicle (REEV) utility trucks, developed by EVI in partnership with PG&E and the California Energy Commission (CEC), were designed, built and tested in the heart of California at EVI’s manufacturing plant in Stockton. The REEV features an all-electric range of 45 miles and fuel savings of up to 30 percent when the units are operating in hybrid mode. PG&E accepted delivery of the first two REEV units this summer, and purchased two additional units after a successful initial demonstration of the vehicles.
“California’s Alternative and Renewable Fuels and Vehicle Technology program is putting more of the cleanest vehicles into service today,” said Janae Scott, member of the California Energy Commission. “The investments that the Energy Commission is making covers initial costs of these trucks, gets innovative technologies to market sooner, and furthers California’s lead on clean transportation.”
EVI, formerly headquartered in Toluca, Mexico, moved its operations to Stockton in 2009 to take advantage of various statewide and regional incentives designed to assist alternative-fuel truck and bus manufacturers in reducing prices for its customers, according to the company. Beyond statewide incentives such as the Hybrid and Zero-Emission Truck and Bus Voucher Incentive Project (HVIP) offered by the California Air Resources Board, EVI has partnered with the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District to reduce the costs of clean vehicles even further based on the district’s pledge to match other government incentives.
PG&E said it plans to eventually replace all 942 of its conventional fuel Class 5 vehicles, including bucket trucks, flat beds, and other service trucks, with plug-in electric hybrid models, which would save the utility nearly $3.5 million in fuel costs and reduce GHG emissions by over 9,000 metric tons annually. In addition to the fuel savings and environmental benefits that PG&E anticipates as it deploys these trucks in increasing numbers, the trucks also offer up to 75 kW of exportable power that could be used to provide power to the grid during planned or unplanned outages, and the utility is working closely with EVI to move that number even higher.
“These cutting-edge trucks not only will help us reduce our fuel costs as well as our carbon footprint, but in the event of an outage, we would be able use their exportable power capacity to supply electricity to homes and businesses,” said Dave Meisel, senior director of transportation and aviation services for PG&E. “Imagine having a fleet of these to deploy in response to a natural disaster or unplanned outage. For us, as a utility, that is a game-changer for the future, and we are proud to partner with EVI and the CEC to develop and integrate these vehicles into our green fleet.”
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