EVs to Recharge Enterprise and PG&E Fleets

EVs to Recharge Enterprise and PG&E Fleets

Enterprise Rent-a-Car and Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) put the spotlight on electric vehicles Tuesday as the companies moved to add the latest electric models to their fleets.

Enterprise Rent-a-Car, sister-company of Alamo and National, said Tuesday it would add 500 Nissan Leafs to what is already one the country's greenest fleets. Nissan will begin delivering the vehicles in January to eight markets with the necessary infrastructures to support plug-in electric vehicles (PHEV).

"As a company that owns and operates the world's largest fleet of passenger vehicles, we have a vested interest and a history of working with manufacturers to integrate alternative-powered vehicles into our fleet," Lee Broughton, director of sustainability for parent company Enterprise Holdings, said in a statement.

The company will begin installing charging stations at locations in the Phoenix and Tuscon, Ariz., Knoxville and Nashville, Tenn., San Diego, Los Angeles, Portland, Ore., and Seattle markets.

Sales of the Nissan Leaf will begin in December for $32,780. The all-electric vehicle, which has a 100-mile range, will be eligible for a tax break of up to $7,500, dropping the final price to as low as $25,280. Chevy Volt

The price tag is smaller than that of the rival Chevy Volt, which will sell for $41,000, General Motors announced today. Dealers in California, Connecticut, Michigan, New Jersey, New York and Washington, D.C., began taking orders for the vehicle. The price may sink to $33,500 once the full federal tax break is factored in.

The Volt can drive on its lithium-ion battery for the first 40 miles, before relying on its gas powered generator, which extends th driving range an additional 300 miles.

Meanwhile, PG&E will take possession of two extended range electric (E-REV) fleet trucks later this year for testing and demonstration.

The trucks were modified with the E-REV powertrain from Raser Technologies, which said Tuesday it will offer the powertrain for both GM and Ford models.

Similar to the Chevy Volt, the E-REVs can cover 40 miles on the lithium-ion batteries before using its range extender for an additional 300 miles. The range extender is a gasoline-powered generator that produces its own electricity.

"PG&E is committed to reducing our emissions and strives to be a leader in green fleet technology," said David Meisel, transportation services director at PG&E. "We have been evaluating the market for over a year, and are proud to integrate the first two near-zero emissions pick-up trucks into our fleet."

Enterprise Holdings and PG&E were included in a list of 10 large alternative fuel vehicle fleets in GreenBiz.com's "State of Green Business 2010."