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N.Y. Power Authority, NYSERDA, and OGS Help Introduce DaimlerChrysler Plug-In Hybrid Electric Concept VehicleThe Sprinter Van

Brian Warner, NYPA, 914-390-8183, (9/27 only 914-584-5024)
Colleen Ryan, NYSERDA, 518-862-1090 ext. 3359

September 27, 2006


ALBANY— New York Power Authority (NYPA), the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) and Office of General Services (OGS) officials today selected Albany’s scenic East Capital Park to display the latest advancement in electric-drive technology, the DaimlerChrysler plug-in hybrid electric (PHEV)  Sprinter Van concept 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 our customers’ 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 Timothy S. Carey, president and chief executive officer, NYPA.

Peter R. Smith, president and chief executive officer, NYSERDA, said, “NYSERDA has been at the forefront of providing technical and financial assistance to private sector companies that manufacture hybrid-electric, plug-in hybrid, and fuel cell vehicles and technologies in New York State. Continuing to create and support public-private partnerships will help grow the New York State hybrid vehicle technology sector.  These collaborative efforts will bolster the economy and result in the creation of new jobs and opportunities for New Yorkers.”

OGS Commissioner John J. Spano said, “Thanks to Governor Pataki's leadership, OGS through the Clean Fueled Vehicles Council has added more than 5,600 alternative fueled vehicles to the State fleet, has built a significant alternative fuel infrastructure throughout the State, and has entered into partnerships with private business to bring alternative fuels to all New Yorkers.  This new initiative to test the Plug-In Hybrid vehicle is one more step in boosting the use of alternative fueled vehicles by residents of our great State, further reducing our dependency on foreign oil.”

"DaimlerChrysler is the only manufacturer to build plug-in hybrid vehicles to test with customers," said Nick Cappa, manager, 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, Electric Transportation Program, Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI). “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 final in a series of public events across 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 PHEVs in various fleets around the country.

In 2006 and 2007, five 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.

PHEVs 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.

NYSERDA is reviewing proposals for a New York State Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle Technology Initiative, aimed at accelerating the adoption and use of plug-in hybrid electric passenger vehicles in the State. The program will provide funding for businesses to develop, test, demonstrate, and ultimately supply to selected New York State government fleets the hardware and services necessary to convert existing State-owned hybrid electric passenger cars and light trucks to plug-in hybrid operation.

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 in its customer fleets.

 About NYPA:

 ■    NYPA uses no tax money or state credit.  It finances its operations through the sale of bonds and revenues earned in large part through sales of electricity.  ■    NYPA is a leader in promoting energy-efficiency, new energy technologies and electric transportation initiatives.  ■    It is the nation’s largest state-owned electric utility, with 18 generating facilities in various parts of the state and more than 1,400 circuit-miles of transmission lines.