POUGHKEEPSIE, NY -- A Chevrolet Volt is now a part of Central Hudson Gas & Electric Corp.’s utility fleet, and the vehicle will be tested as part of a research and development program for plug-in electric hybrid vehicles.
“The Chevy Volt is a plug-in electric vehicle using advanced lithium-ion batteries to power the car for up to 40 miles,” said James P. Laurito, president of Central Hudson. “It also features an on-board gasoline generator that serves as a backup to the batteries to extend the range of the car to more than 300 miles. We intend to test and demonstrate this new technology as part of our preparations for the anticipated use of plug-in vehicles by local residents and businesses in the years ahead.”
Benefits of adding plug-in electric vehicles to the fleet include lower operating costs and lower emissions.
“Electricity as a fuel costs less than half that of gasoline, and emissions from electric generation sources are about 70 percent less than those of gasoline engines,” said Laurito. He added that studies show recharging plug-in vehicles would have little impact on the overall electric grid if recharged at night.
“The Chevy Volt is now in production and is currently available on a limited basis, so we’re taking this opportunity to test the vehicle’s performance over the four-season environment here in the Mid-Hudson Valley,” said Laurito. “We plan to share our findings on our website so that our customers may also learn of the car’s performance.”
The Chevy Volt joins eight hybrid line trucks as part of Central Hudson’s fleet of alternative-fueled vehicles. The utility’s heavy trucks also use a biodiesel fuel blend to reduce emissions.
Central Hudson displayed the Chevy Volt at the utility’s booth last week at the Dutchess County Fair.
Central Hudson is also participating in a nationwide field study to test a prototype hybrid 4X4 pickup truck manufactured by Chrysler Corp.
Originally posted on Work Truck Online