July 14, 2011
by Fleet Management staff
OAK PARK, MI: New York City has bought 10 Ford Transit Connect Electric vans from Azure Dynamics Corporation as part of Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg’s PlaNYC agenda to create a greener New York City.
“We are delighted that New York City chose Azure’s Transit Connect Electric to be deployed within several key city departments as part of their PlaNYC initiative,” said Scott Harrison, Azure Dynamics’ CEO. “The thrust for adoption of EV technology is growing rapidly worldwide and Mayor Bloomberg’s ‘Drive Electric NYC’ educational program will help sustain that momentum by providing facts about electric vehicles to encourage more city residents to consider electric for their next vehicle purchase.”
New York City boasts the largest municipal electric vehicle fleet in the country, now totaling 430 units. Azure’s Transit Connect Electric will be deployed in multiple city departments including the New York Fire Department and the Departments of Transportation, Central Administration and Sanitation. However, in addition to acquiring EV units, the City hopes to accelerate EV adoption among its residents.
“We will continue to lead by example, but we must also provide New Yorkers with the tools to make environmentally friendly choices in their own lives,” said Mayor Michael Bloomberg. “When provided with the facts, people become far more likely to choose an electric vehicle.”
Mayor Bloomberg cited a survey by McKinsey & Company that suggested that when people are provided basic information they become dramatically more interested in electric vehicles. The study also suggested that the range of an electric vehicle far exceeds the average American’s daily miles traveled.
“Although Azure has been immersed in electrified travel for decades, we thoroughly understand that EVs are a new and relatively unknown concept for many potential customers,” said Harrison. “However, as NYC demonstrated, customer uncertainties are fading fast while the correlating appreciation for EV fuel and environmental advantages surge forward.”
A unique combination of car-like driving dynamics, cargo capacity, maneuverability, accessibility and low operating costs are characteristics that make the Ford Transit Connect Electric an ideal choice for commercial customers seeking to lower fuel costs and improve environmental performance of their fleet. Commercial vehicle fleets are increasingly seen as the logical starting point for electric vehicles due to typical drive cycles that include travel on predictable, short-range, routes with frequent stop and go driving in tight urban or suburban environments. Commercial vehicles generally return to a central location at the end of a drive cycle making for efficient and convenient recharging over night.