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GM, U.S. Postal Service Agree to Move Mail With Fuel Cells
Tuesday June 15, 12:00 pm ET
U.S. Postal Service is GM's First Commercial Application of a Fuel Cell Vehicle in the U.S.

WASHINGTON, June 15 /PRNewswire/ -- The United States Postal Service will lease a fuel cell vehicle from General Motors Corp. to deliver mail in and around the nation's capital, according to a joint agreement announced today.

As part of the two-year agreement, the U.S. Postal Service will use a GM minivan, powered by a fuel cell. This is the first commercial application of a GM fuel cell vehicle in the U.S.

"The Postal Service sees this as an important test for GM's fuel cell vehicle. The ever-increasing cost of fuel and the need to protect our environment highlights the need to move forward with this initiative," said Thomas G. Day, Vice President, Engineering. "We are delighted to add this vehicle to the 30,000 alternative fuel vehicles already delivering the mail."

Other applications of GM fuel cells are with Federal Express Corp. (FedEx) and Dow Chemical Co. FedEx has been using a GM minivan to deliver packages in Tokyo for the last year. Dow Chemical is using a GM fuel cell to help power up one of the world's largest chemical plants at a 30-square-mile site in Freeport, Texas.

"The U.S. Postal Service is a perfect partner at this stage in fuel cell development," said Larry Burns, GM vice president of research & development and planning. "Unlike many fleets, USPS uses retail gas stations, yet provides new opportunities to prove out durability and performance. The Postal Service operates everywhere in the U.S., giving us maximum flexibility to expand the relationship in areas or regions where a hydrogen infrastructure gets kicked off."

Routine delivery of the mail in local neighborhoods also will help confirm the safety of fuel cell vehicles to the public, Burns said.

The U.S. Postal Service will begin using the fuel cell vehicle in September, which will coincide with the opening of the nation's first hydrogen pump at a retail gas station. Last year, GM and Shell Hydrogen announced a partnership to provide hydrogen for a GM fleet of fuel cell vehicles operating around Washington, D.C.

Article Here

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First hybrid Pickups for commercial applications, then buses, now Postal vehicles. I think I may have misjudged GM's commitment to hybrid power!! :eek:
They're going after larger applications first......and like Reganomics (pardon so soon after his passing), we'll get trickle down cars to the general public eventually.
;)
 

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I always felt that they should had done this with the electric vehicles, the EV1 and the electric S-10. Selling to the public is difficult because of the limited use and connectivety, but something like the postal service can appreciate the economies of scale from the savings...
 

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"The" fuel station, and "the" minivan.

Kinda depressing.....

I can see how Toyota sees this as "Engineering by Press Release"

Offer the Uplander to all customers with a hydrogen fuel cell as a 5,000 dollar option, or if that's too unrealistic, offer the Silverado hybrid setup in all Suburbans --- that would be something to crow about loudly.
 

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cmon ming, this is a long term solution, not a bandaid like hybrids. GM says this will be big in 2010, everyone else says 2020 or later, I think this is a huge step towards getting it in the public eye and building support for infrastructure.

I live in DC, so I'll keep my camera in my car and look for this thing come september!
 

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Originally posted by Ming@Jun 15 2004, 05:01 PM
Offer the Uplander to all customers with a hydrogen fuel cell as a 5,000 dollar option, or if that's too unrealistic, offer the Silverado hybrid setup in all Suburbans --- that would be something to crow about loudly.
So everyone is going to drive to D.C. to fuel up? GM can't just release the Hybrid system on all of its SUVs and trucks at the same time. These things need to be tested. Otherwise you end up with things like the Prius that needs a new expensive battery after 7 or so years....
 
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