Chevrolet Silverado Hybrid Pickup
DETROIT - General Motors will deliver the world's first full-size hybrid pickup today when it presents a Chevrolet Silverado to Miami-Dade County at the 10th National Clean Cities Conference and Expo in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. Later this month, Miami-Dade County will take delivery of a total of 50 Chevrolet Silverado extended cab hybrid pickups for inclusion in its fleet.
The hybrid pickups feature GM's powerful 5300 Vortec V-8 and Hydra-Matic 4L60-E four-speed automatic transmission, coupled with a new hybrid technology that delivers 10 to 12 percent improved fuel economy over GM half-ton pickups, giving the hybrid Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra the best highway fuel economy of any full-size truck on the market. The trucks also feature reduced emissions and unique accessory power capability, without any sacrifice in load-carrying, towing and grade-climbing capability.
"GM is committed to providing practical hybrid solutions on the widest range of high-volume vehicles, including full-size trucks. Today's delivery shows GM is delivering on this commitment," said John Gaydash, GM Fleet and Commercial marketing director. "These hybrid pickups will save more fuel than gasoline-powered pickup trucks, with no compromise in performance or utility. In addition, Miami-Dade will now have the flexibility and productivity of generating wall-quality electrical power from the GM pickup truck when in remote locations."
"We are looking forward to putting our new hybrid trucks on the road and on the job," said Olga Diaz, Miami-Dade County. "The county is looking forward to earning fuel economy savings of up to 12 percent on every hybrid pickup."
In addition to improvements in fuel economy and emissions, the GM hybrid pickups feature four 120-volt, 20 amp electrical auxiliary power outlets under the rear seat of the cab and in the pickup bed that can accommodate up to four accessories while driving or when parked. With this auxiliary generator capability, the truck's generator can operate when the truck is parked without a key in the ignition and can be used to power anything from tools at a construction site to appliances at a campsite.
In the event of a power outage, the hybrid Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra pickups could power tools or appliances for up to 32 hours non-stop. This design shuts the engine down before the tank is emptied, leaving enough gas to drive to a station for refueling. All power supply circuits are protected by a ground fault detection system to prevent overloads and short circuits.
The GM hybrid pickups are more efficient because of the engine start/stop function and regenerative braking, which turns the motor into a generator as the truck decelerates. Extra fuel savings come from quickly shutting off fuel any time the truck is coasting or braking, and using the electric motor to smooth out any resulting vibrations.
Instead of a conventional starter motor and alternator, the hybrid truck features a compact electric motor that is integrated in a patented, space-efficient way between the engine and transmission. The electric motor provides fast, quiet starting power and the ability to generate up to 14,000 watts of continuous electric power.
At a stoplight, the gasoline engine stops running, but the accessories continue working on stored electrical power. When the light turns green and the driver releases the brake, the gasoline engine kicks in again seamlessly, with little or no delay or disturbance.
To ensure full accessory capability while the engine is temporarily stopped, an electrically driven hydraulic pump provides power steering, an electric pump continues to circulate hot water if cabin heat is needed in the winter, and cold, dry air is supplied in the summer for an extended period through control of the conventional air conditioning system.
Hybrid versions of the 2005 model year Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra pickups will be available to retail customers starting this fall.
(May 3, 2004)