Memphis, TN-based FedEx Express, a subsidiary of FedEx Corp. is planning to add up to 75 hybrid diesel-electric delivery trucks to its service fleet over the next year, contingent upon pricing and availability. Currently, the company owns and operates 18 such hybrids.
“[This] planned increase for next year reflects the growing viability of hybrid trucks,” said John Formisano, VP-Global Vehicles for FedEx Express, said during a press conference in Washington D.C.
The FedEx Express E700, using a hybrid drive system developed by Cleveland, OH-based Eaton Corp., reportedly decreases particulate emissions by 96% and can travel 57% farther on a gallon of fuel than a conventional FedEx diesel truck -- reducing fuel costs by more than one third, said Formisano. The E700 is built with the same Freightliner chassis and Utilimaster body as its diesel-only brother, the W700.
FedEx began its hybrid truck project four years ago in partnership with Environmental Defense, a NY-based environmental activist organization, as a way to demonstrate the business viability of hybrid trucks, said Gwen Ruta, director of corporate partnerships for the group. “As fuel prices continue to rise, fuel efficient trucks are an investment that every company should be making,” she said. “And since hybrids also reduce air pollution, oil dependency and climate change, they're not only good for business but good for America.”