Electric Vehicles

Fleets Can Reduce Costs by 25% with EVs

November 16, 2016, by Thi Dao

This map shows Public Fleet Pilot Project rebates disbursed through August. Image via Center for Sustainable Energy
This map shows Public Fleet Pilot Project rebates disbursed through August. Image via Center for Sustainable Energy

Fleets can save up to 25% of the total cost of ownership over the life of a vehicle by replacing select cars with plug-in electric vehicles (PEVs), according to a report from the Center for Sustainable Energy (CSE).

CSE, which administers grant funding for clean vehicles, conducted a PEV suitability assessment for public fleets in disadvantaged communities across California as part of the Public Fleet Pilot Project. FleetCarma provided telematics devices that tracked vehicle use, and findings show that 80% of the 85 vehicles tracked could be replaced with PEVs — 90% of sedans and 50% of pick-up trucks tracked. The average cost savings for replacing a vehicle with a PEV was $1,300.

“If each fleet replaced all the recommended vehicles with the best-fit PEV, the fleets would save an average of approximately $75,000, or nearly 25% of estimated total cost of ownership over the life of the vehicles,” according to the assessment.

In addition to the assessment study, CSE also administers grand funding for the Public Fleet Pilot Project. The Pilot Project provides California public agencies in disadvantaged communities with increased rebates for plug-in hybrid vehicles (PHEVs), battery-electric vehicles (BEVs), and fuel-cell electric vehicles (FCEVs). Since its inception in 2014, the project has provided $2.9 million to help fund more than 350 vehicles at 60 public agencies across the state, according to Randy Wilde, project associate for CSE. Data available from August shows that of these, 179 are PHEVs, 151 are BEVs, and four are FCEVs.

Public fleets not located in a disadvantaged community area can apply for the Clean Vehicle Rebate Project (CVRP), also administered by CSE. This funding opportunity is also open to individuals, businesses, and non-profits, and public fleets have received less than 1% of rebates issued since its inception in 2010. Public agencies have received 560 rebates totaling more than $1.1 million — of these 560 rebates, 30% were for PHEVs, 56% for BEVs, 1% for FCEVs, and 13% for zero emission motorcycles and neighborhood electric vehicles, according to Wilde.

On Oct. 20, the California Air Resources Board (CARB) approved a plan to extend these and other funding incentives for clean vehicles. It allotted $133 million to the Clean Vehicle Rebate Project and $3 million to the Public Fleet Pilot Project.

The California Plug-in Electric Vehicle Collaborative projected that this November, more than 250,000 plug-in electric cars will be sold in California since they hit the market in 2010.

To view the report, click here.

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