To reduce air pollution, carbon emissions, and gas consumption, New York City is adding electric cars to its vehicle fleet.
Mayor Michael Bloomberg, along with several other officials, announced that the city purchased 10 electric Ford Transit Connect cargo vans, 10 Navistar eStar electric utility trucks, and 50 Chevrolet Volts that will be shared by several agencies, including the police and fire departments.
"This is the latest and largest-ever addition of electric vehicles to the City's fleet, which is already the largest municipal clean-air vehicle fleet in the nation," said Mayor Bloomberg.
The city believes that the more the public sees electric vehicles in use, the more likely they will consider them for their own personal transportation. The New York Police Department already uses electric scooters and electric-powered golf carts on boardwalks and in parks, but the Volt will be the first vehicle the fire and police department use on city streets without gas. At least some of the time.
The Volt is technically an extended range electric vehicle, but the city is making the case that it's an EV because it operates for the first 35 miles using only electric power. After the energy in 16-kilowatt lithium-ion battery is depleted, the Volt's gas engine kicks in to recharge the battery and propel the vehicle, achieving approximately 35 mpg, depending on who's driving. The Volt's battery can also be recharged from a standard or 240-volt outlet.
Although the police and fire department will be using the vehicles for official business, don't expect to see the 5-0 patrolling the hood in a Volt. The police and fire department will initially use the vehicle for non-emergency duties.