Puget Sound Energy (PSE) has converted 40 of its Ford Transit vans into gas/electric hybrids using the XL hybrid system. The upgrade is expected to reduce each van’s carbon footprint by 20% and increase fuel economy as much as 25%.
PSE worked with XL to upfit each Ford van with an electric motor and 1.8 kWh lithium-ion battery pack, as well as the XL Link connected vehicle system. The XL Link software provides actionable intelligence from PSE’s vehicle data, allowing company officials to monitor important metrics such as fuel economy, speed, idling time, vehicle drive cycles and CO2 emission reductions.
The XL system allows PSE vans to save fuel through regenerative braking, a process by which the XL electric motor helps slow the van when the driver brakes, while simultaneously charging the battery. The energy stored in the battery is then used to help power the vehicle when the driver accelerates.
The upgrade is part of a bigger plan to outfit another 20 fleet vehicles from petroleum to a hybrid system this year. All of the converted vehicles have the potential of reducing PSE’s carbon footprint by about 1.3 million pounds of CO2 annually.
The conversion of these vehicles is in line with PSE’s commitment to reduce its carbon footprint by 50% by 2040.