WASHINGTON - The American Public Gas Association (APGA), Natural Gas Vehicles for America (NGVAmerica) and Hybrid Kinetic Motors Corp. (HK Motors) announced plans to work together to promote the mass production and sales of natural gas-powered hybrid passenger vehicles. 

HK Motors plans to begin producing a family of light-duty natural gas hybrid-electric passenger vehicles at its plant in Alabama beginning in 2013. Natural gas hybrids will use similar electric-drive technology to gasoline-powered hybrid vehicles available today, but natural gas will be the power source rather than gasoline. 

"The American public is becoming very familiar with hybrid technology, and this is the next evolution," said Richard Kolodziej, president of NGVAmerica. 

Natural gas offers significant greenhouse gas advantages. Compared to gasoline vehicles, NGVs produce 29 percent fewer greenhouse gases. When vehicle power-trains are designed specifically to use natural gas and combined with hybrid technologies, greenhouse gas levels can be reduced by half while providing fuel efficiency to meet or exceed new federal standards. 

Key goals of the collaboration include:

  • Promoting consumer interest in natural gas hybrids
  • Encouraging federal and state governments to extend the current range of incentives to encourage consumers, businesses, and governments to choose natural gas hybrid vehicles and the infrastructure necessary to sustain them. This would include advocating the passage of the Natural Gas Act of 2009 (HR 1435; S. 1408)
  • Promoting research and development efforts of natural gas vehicle/infrastructure technologies as well as related business models
  • Working with natural gas distribution companies to install home fueling appliances and provide services for NGV purchasers
  • Encouraging fleet owners of CNG fueling stations to expand their installations to include retail access to new NGV car owners
  • Supporting access to more domestic supplies of natural gas. 

"Natural gas provides an immediate, responsible step toward real energy independence for the American driving public," said CT Wang, CEO of Hybrid Kinetic Motors. "It is geographically abundant and clean. We will work together to ensure it is in convenient supply when HK Motors vehicles arrive in the market." 

Hybrid Kinetic Motors is a new American automaker that plans to mass-produce natural gas-powered hybrid-electric vehicles. 

The American Public Gas Association is a nonprofit association for publicly- and community-owned gas utilities. 

NGVAmerica represents more than 130 companies interested in the promotion and use of natural gas and hydrogen as transportation fuels.