THINK is hitting the road with GE and other electric vehicle makers for a seven-city electric vehicle experience tour. The event will feature test drives of the THINK City for local business fleet operators, government representatives and other EV stakeholders, along with educational workshops with GE’s EV experts. The tour is designed to help local communities understand the technical and business impacts of the coming wide-spread deployment of EVs in the U.S.
Scheduled tour dates are: San Francisco, March 10; Seattle, March 15; Los Angeles, March 17; San Diego, March 22. Additional spring 2011 EV experience tour dates will be announced later for Austin, New York, and Washington, D.C.
“We are excited to be a part of this unique and important educational event that GE is hosting,” said THINK spokesperson Brendan Prebo. “We’re looking forward to giving hundreds of fleet managers and operators the experience of driving and learning more about the THINK City.”
GE owns one of the world’s largest vehicle fleets and operates a leading global fleet management business. The company has committed to purchasing 25,000 EVs by 2015 for its own fleet and for fleet customers.
With millions of vehicles in operation, the nation’s fleets are expected to play an important role in accelerating vehicle electrification in the U.S. Fleet sales will drive up vehicle and battery production volumes and drive down costs, which will benefit retail consumers. This will help push the industry past early adopters into mainstream consumer markets.
Unlike individual consumers, fleets focus more on the total cost of ownership, which is significantly lower for EVs, and not just the up-front cost of the vehicle. Fleets also tend to have highly predictable driving routes and centralized refuelling, which when combined with substantially discounted electricity rates make them a natural platform to launch this new industry.
THINK is currently selling the THINK City to fleet customers in select markets in the U.S. and plans to roll out retail sales later this year.
The THINK City is an all-electric, zero-emission car designed for fleet applications and urban commuters. Durable, highly maneuverable and with low maintenance, the THINK City can travel 100 miles on a single charge, using advanced lithium-ion batteries manufactured in Indiana by Ener1, Inc. The vehicle has accumulated more than 35 million road miles in customer experience since it was first safety certified in Europe in 1999.
THINK is the world’s leading dedicated electric vehicle manufacturer, developed and proven over 20 years. This heritage gives THINK a head start with having put more than 2,500 THINK City cars on the road and accumulated more than 35 million road miles of customer experience. The THINK City, the first electric car to be granted pan–European regulatory safety approval, is sold across Europe, with sales and production in the U.S. and operations being developed in Asia.
THINK is also a leader in electric drive train technology, and was the first to offer a modular and flexible electric drive-train solution in the business-to-business sector. With its Scandinavian origins and sustainability mindset, THINK is one of the most carbon-efficient car companies in the world.