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First Public Event for DaimlerChrysler's PHEV Prototype
Sep 15, 2006 (From the CalCars-News archive)
This posting originally appeared at CalCars-News, our newsletter of breaking CalCars and plug-in hybrid news. View the original posting here.
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DaimlerChrysler remains the only major car-maker with a PHEV prototype program. They've built a few vehicles using their Mercedes Sprinter platform (a commercial or 15-passenger van --see­vehicles.html#5 for some info), and one of them is making its first public appearance.

New York Gets Plug-In Hybrid Van [­view.cfm?section=communique&newsid=13029&url= Source: NYPA Sep 15, 2006]

SYNOPSIS: NYPA, DaimlerChrysler and EPRI Introduce Plug-In Hybrid Electric Concept Vehicle

NEW YORK -- The New York Power Authority (NYPA) and the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) have teamed with DaimlerChrysler to display the latest advancement in plug-in hybrid electric (PHEV) technology, the Sprinter Van concept vehicle.

One of these concept utility vehicles was showcased today at the Hugh L. Carey Battery Park City, in front of the Solaire, America's first residential high-rise green building. NYPA President and Chief Executive Officer Timothy S. Carey was joined by Battery Park City Authority President and Chief Executive Officer Jim Cavanaugh, DaimlerChrysler Senior Manager Claus Tritt and EPRI Senior Account Executive Rebecca Wingenroth, to present the vehicle.

"Under Governor George Pataki's leadership the Power Authority has advanced a number of green initiatives. In the realm of transportation, our electric transportation program is committed to putting electric and hybrid electric-cars and buses on New York's streets, and in government and customer fleets. Now we are working with the Electric Power Research Institute and DaimlerChrysler to pave the way for the next big thing in automotive transportation?plug-in hybrids," said Carey.

"The Hugh L. Carey Battery Park City Authority has become a model for environmentally responsible urban living, so it is only natural that we would welcome an opportunity to help showcase a concept vehicle designed to help protect our environment. Battery Park City has a productive relationship with NYPA, the state's largest provider of lower-cost electricity and a supporter of electric-drive vehicle use for public fleets," said Cavanaugh.

"DaimlerChrysler is the only manufacturer to build plug-in hybrid vehicles to test with customers," said Nick Cappa, Manager of Advanced Technology Communications DaimlerChrysler. "What we're learning from this proof of concept fleet will apply to future hybrid powertrain and battery technology."

"The plug-in Sprinter Van represents a significant step along a series of important developments that will lead to commercializing Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicles," said Robert Graham, manager, EPRI's Electric Transportation Program. "Many of the technological advantages are clear?a vehicle operating primarily on electricity is a cheaper ride, air emissions are significantly lower and it reduces our reliance on imported oil."

Ongoing EPRI studies indicate that fleet applications offer the best opportunity for the early demonstration of plug-in hybrids.

Today's unveiling is the first of a series of public events planned for New York State to highlight this plug-in hybrid electric concept vehicle. NYPA has joined an alliance created by EPRI, in cooperation with DaimlerChrysler to demonstrate plug-in hybrid-electric vehicles in various fleets around the country.

In 2006 and 2007, four prototype vehicles currently being tested in Germany will be brought to the United States under a federal waiver and tested by customers for a three-year period. NYPA plans to demonstrate one of these vehicles in the fleet of The New York Times.

Plug-in hybrids can operate in either an all-electric or hybrid mode. These vehicles have larger batteries than standard non-plug-in hybrids, which allow them to travel distances in the all electric-only mode. The Sprinter plug-in concept vehicle has an electric range of up to 20 miles. On short urban routes, with lots of stop-and-go driving, this vehicle may operate for most of the day in electric mode.

In the hybrid mode, the vehicle performs like a standard hybrid, with significantly lower emissions and fuel consumption than conventional diesel or gasoline vehicles.

NYPA is a recognized national leader in the promotion and demonstration of electric drive technologies. In New York City, NYPA worked with the Metropolitan Transportation Authority to introduce hybrid-electric buses. Over the last 10 years, NYPA has placed more than 800 electric drive vehicles in service with customer fleets.

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