Things are looking up for Azure Dynamics these days. After inking a deal to help Ford with the development and production of the Transit Connect BEV next year, the company has a new order for its hybrid delivery vans. FedEx has signed up to take on another 51 of the vans based on Ford's E450 cutaway chassis. Once the new vans are delivered by the end of this year, FedEx will have 325 hybrid and electric vans in its fleet and its Bronx, New York facility will be the first all-hybrid depot in the U.S. The Bronx depot will have 100 hybrid delivery trucks in service. FedEx already has 25 Azure trucks in its fleet and the new additions join another 92 trucks that were retrofitted with hybrid systems earlier this year. Since introducing its first hybrid in 2004, Fedex has accumulated four million miles on them.
FedEx Orders 51 New Azure Dynamics Hybrid Electric Delivery Vans
MEMPHIS, Tenn.--FedEx Express, a subsidiary of FedEx Corp. , today announced it will purchase 51 additional gasoline-electric hybrid vehicles from Azure Dynamics Corporation (TSX: AZD). The FedEx fleet of hybrid electric and electric vehicles will total 325 when all 51 hybrid step-vans are delivered during November and December of 2009. Most of the new FedEx gasoline-electric vehicles will be put into service at a Bronx, N.Y., station, making it the first FedEx all-hybrid facility with about 100 trucks.
"Even during a challenging fiscal year, FedEx has continued to make investments in hybrid electric and electric vehicles a priority because of the long-term value in vehicle technologies that reduce fuel costs and pollution," said John Formisano, vice president of Global Vehicles, FedEx Express. "FedEx now operates seven different hybrid or electric truck models around the globe, demonstrating that commercial delivery vans can reduce pollution and increase efficiency without any sacrifice in performance and durability."
"We applaud FedEx for its continuous effort to conserve resources and minimize its environmental impact," said Scott Harrison, CEO of Azure Dynamics, "and we are delighted that FedEx has again chosen to use Azure's Balance Hybrid Electric gasoline drive train."
"The tough driving and delivery conditions of New York City, mainly the stop-and-go-traffic, is an ideal environment to prove that efficient and cleaner transportation technologies are a viable alternative to conventionally equipped trucks," said Mitch Jackson, director of Environmental Affairs and Sustainability, FedEx Corp. "FedEx continues to advance clean truck technology, and is pleased that our ongoing leadership enhances the industry's interest and development of hybrid commercial vehicles."
With its electric-launch assist, engine-off at idle, and regenerative braking, the FedEx Azure gasoline-electric step-vans are well-suited for the tough start-and-stop conditions endured in the everyday traffic of one of the world's busiest cities. As a result, FedEx expects a fuel efficiency improvement of 30% while also reducing its carbon footprint.
Twenty FedEx Azure Balance Hybrid Electric gasoline step-vans are already in service across the FedEx Express delivery network in California. Overall, FedEx currently operates 274 hybrid electric and electric vehicles around the globe, and 1,780 alternative fuel vehicles and equipment. The addition of these 51 vehicles takes FedEx to a total of 325 hybrid electric and electric vehicles, and more than 1,800 alternative fuel vehicles and equipment. The FedEx hybrid fleet has logged more than four million miles of revenue service since being introduced in 2004, reducing fuel use by 150,000 gallons and carbon dioxide emissions by 1,521 metric tons.
Today's announcement is the third significant advancement in FedEx's alternative vehicle fleet in recent months. In June 2009, FedEx converted 92 existing trucks to hybrid-electrics in its delivery fleet-the first of its standard FedEx delivery trucks retrofitted to hybrid-electric systems. In late August, FedEx completed the rollout of ten new state-of-the-art electric commercial vehicles for use in the United Kingdom. With zero tailpipe emissions, the FedEx electric vehicles will save around 11 tons of CO2 a year compared to a similar-weight diesel vehicle.
The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) plans to provide a grant to FedEx for the Azure hybrids. NYSERDA, in part, aims to maintain momentum for the State's efforts to develop competitive markets for energy efficiency.
FedEx Corp. provides customers and businesses worldwide with a broad portfolio of transportation, e-commerce and business services. With annual revenues of $34 billion, the company offers integrated business applications through operating companies competing collectively and managed collaboratively, under the respected FedEx brand. Consistently ranked among the world's most admired and trusted employers, FedEx inspires its more than 275,000 team members to remain "absolutely, positively" focused on safety, the highest ethical and professional standards and the needs of their customers and communities. For more information, visit news.fedex.com.
About Azure Dynamics
Azure Dynamics Corporation (TSX: AZD) is a world leader in the development and production of hybrid electric and electric components and powertrain systems for commercial vehicles. Azure is strategically targeting the commercial delivery vehicle and shuttle bus markets and is currently working internationally with various partners and customers. The Company is committed to providing customers and partners with innovative, cost-efficient, and environmentally-friendly energy management solutions. For more information please visit www.azuredynamics.com.