UPS has followed the deployment of 300 compressed natural gas (CNG) vehicles earlier in 2009 and others in 2008 with an order for another 300 for its U.S. delivery fleet. 200 hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs) have also been ordered. The purchase means the UPS alternative fuel fleet, already the largest such private fleet in the United States, will grow 30% — from 1,718 to 2,218 low-carbon vehicles. “UPS has been utilizing alternative fuel vehicles for more than 70 years and is clearly the industry leader in hybrid electric and CNG vehicle purchases,” said Robert Hall, director of UPS’s ground fleet.
The 300 CNG vehicles will be deployed later this year and join more than 800 such vehicles already in use in the United States. CNG vehicles run on natural gas, a cost-effective, clean-burning and readily available fuel. These vehicles are expected to yield a 20-percent reduction in emissions over the cleanest diesel engines available today.
The CNG/HEV vehicle order follows the April 2008 deployment of 167 new CNG vehicles in Atlanta, Dallas, Los Angeles, Ontario, San Ramon, Fresno and Sacramento. In addition, UPS added 50 next-generation hybrid electric delivery trucks in Atlanta, Dallas, Houston and Phoenix in May 2007.
The chassis for the CNG and HEV trucks are being purchased from Freightliner Custom Chassis Corp., with Eaton Corp. supplying the hybrid power system for the HEVs. The truck bodies are identical externally to the signature-brown trucks that now comprise the UPS fleet, with additional script markings that will identify them as CNG and HEV vehicles.
The ‘green’ fleet operates in the United States, Germany, France, Brazil, Canada, Mexico and the United Kingdom and has traveled nearly 144 million miles since 2000.