Following in the footsteps of GE, other big businesses to embrace EV fleets

2011 Chevrolet Volt

Taking a lead from corporate magnate GE, companies are starting to green their automotive fleets. GE is set to buy as many as 25,000 rechargeable cars, half of them coming from General Motors.

“You’ll see some early adopters follow suit, people maybe like UPS or FedEx, and those are your logical first movers,” said John Segrich, who leads the green research group for Rye, N.Y.-based Gabelli & Co. and manages the SRI Green Fund. “You are going to see large corporations move this way.”

Major corporate purchases will help boost the technology, as mass adoption by consumers is destined to be slow going, as range anxiety and cost remain sticking points. It is also more practical for major fleets to go electric, as tax credits will come en masse, and it is much more practical to install charging stations in fleet garages. GM will also capitalize and seize the initiative on charging stations.

FedEx plans on converting 2.5% of its 75,000 vehicle fleet to electric, while UPS currently has no specific figure. Enterprise and Hertz, the two biggest U.S. auto rental companies, also have ordered hundreds of electric vehicles, including Nissan”s Leaf and Chevrolet”s Volt.

– By: Stephen Calogera

Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)