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Smith Electric Vehicles on last leg, production suspended

Smith Electric Vehicles suspended production at the end of 2013 due to cash shortages, but made no announcements about the closure. It was disclosed in a required filing with the U.S. Department of Energy as part of grant requirements – the DOE awarded $32 million to Smith Electric in 2010.

The company reported to the DOE that it suspended production due to the company’s “tight cash flow situation” and has not been responding to questions from the press, with phones going unanswered or questions being answered with “No comment.”  Read more »

XL Hybrids brings its hybrid-electric powertrain to Class 3-4 trucks

XL Hybrids, Inc. has extended availability of its patent-pending XL3 Hybrid Electric Drive System to Class 3-4 cutaway and strip chassis vehicles rated up to 14,500-lbs GVW. Up until now, the system had been offered by XL Hybrids for Class 1-2 vans.

“This opens up opportunities for fleets operating cutaway and strip chassis vans to get a 25% increase in miles driven per gallon, reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 20% and see an attractive return on their investment,” said Tod Hynes, president and founder of XL Hybrids. Read more »

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First all-electric school bus in US starts service in California

Over two years after its introduction, the first all-electric school bus in the US has gone into service. Produced by the partnership between Trans Tech and Motiv, the SST-e school bus can carry up to 25 students, has a range of 80 or 100 miles (depending on options) and can save a school district over $10,000 a year in running costs. Those range numbers are down from the concept bus (which was going to offer 100 or 130 miles), but it should still be plenty for most of the morning and afternoon runs to pick up the be-backpacked. Read more »

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Bolt-on Hybrid System Takes Home Work Truck Show Green Award

Echo Automotive’s EchoDrive plug-in hybrid system took home the Green Award from the NTEA’S Work Truck Show in Indianapolis.

Based in Scottsdale, Ariz., Echo Automotive has developed a non-invasive, “bolt-on” plug-in hybrid solution for new or existing vehicles, and expects to deliver the first units to beta-testing fleets in the second quarter.

The Green Award is presented annually to the Work Truck Show product that best advances work truck fuel utilization as determined by a panel of trade media editors and fleet managers.

Read more here.

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