Building on its status as the No. 1 Government Green Fleet in North America, the City of Long Beach unveiled four 100 mpg Plug-in Hybrid Vehicles on Tuesday. The City used cutting-edge technology to transform four Toyota Prius Hybrid vehicles into electric plug-in vehicles that boast 100 miles per gallon.
“As the owner of an electric vehicle, I can tell you that there are many benefits to using alternative fuel vehicles,” said Mayor Bob Foster. “Utilizing plug-in hybrid electric technology helps create a cleaner, healthier environment and helps the City exceed regional, state and federal environmental regulations, which is an achievement we can all be proud of.”
These four vehicles are part of a City pilot project to determine how much additional fuel savings and environmental benefits electric plug-in vehicles can generate.
“The City’s long history with alternative vehicles and fuels has allowed it to become a leader among public agencies,” said Councilmember Suja Lowenthal. “As stewards of the environment, we work hard to take steps toward a cleaner, greener Long Beach.”
Plug-in hybrid electric vehicles use the same technology as the popular hybrids on the road today, but are outfitted with an additional battery that can power the vehicle from 20 to 60 miles on battery charge alone and can be recharged in a standard electrical outlet. Plug-in hybrid electric vehicles are more cost effective to operate because the vehicle runs primarily on the electric charge and not gasoline. Another benefit is that these cars can be plugged in at night when energy rates are the lowest.
“Plug-in hybrid electric vehicles can dramatically decrease the City’s dependence on imported oil, reduce greenhouse gases and other air pollutants, as well as lower the City’s fuel costs,” said Carlos Velasquez, Acting Fleet Services Manager. “Based on the successfulness of this pilot program, this technology may be expanded throughout the City’s hybrid fleet in coming years.”
The City of Long Beach has been using alternative fuels for more than 30 years, starting with compressed natural gas (CNG) vehicles in the 1970s.
The City’s fleet consists of 1,700 vehicles, and is a committed leader in reducing airborne particulate matter, carbon emissions and other greenhouse gases by providing several hundred vehicles in its light and heavy fleets, powered by CNG, LNG, propane, electricity and biodiesel, in addition to a growing number of hybrid vehicles.