Southern California Edison Company (SCE) has shown a commitment to deploying vehicles in its fleet that meet or exceed emissions standards, emit lower greenhouse gases, and reduce use of petroleum. This has been best demonstrated by operating the nation's largest electric vehicle utility fleet to conduct daily business, as well as demonstrations of hydrogen, fuel cell, and hybrid vehicles. SCE has also for many years been evaluating heavy-duty hybrid technology for use in its fleet. Heavy duty vehicles use a large amount of fuel, and thus even a small percentage savings is significant in terms of total amount of fuel displaced. SCE's fleet uses millions of gallons of fuel per year, much of that being used to run trucks. In addition, the purchase price premium associated with hybrid vehicles is potentially much lower on a percentage basis than with light-duty vehicles. Recently, SCE took part in a national consortium to specify and order a limited number of prototype Class 6 hybrid-electric utility trucks. In conjunction, SCE developed extensive test and evaluation procedures using sophisticated methods and equipment. SCE received its truck in December of 2006. This paper will detail SCE's evaluation procedures and philosophies and give some details on preliminary experiences.
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