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Telecom giant Verizon, in an effort to reduce its carbon footprint, is making a huge push to acquire more fuel efficient vehicles. The company recently announced that it has bought 576 Chevy Silverado Hybrid pickups, the first of which will be delivered in July, from Fairway Motors, a GM dealer located in Hazelton, PA.
The Silverado Hybrid employs a two mode hybrid system with an electric motor and 6.0-liter gasoline fueled V8, which allows it to run on electric power alone at speeds up to 30 mph and also uses a cylinder deactivation system on the V8 to boost fuel economy. EPA rated fuel economy is set at 21-mpg city and 22-mpg highway. Yet power, torque and payload capacity rival other trucks on the market, with the Vortech V8 generating 332-hp and 367 ft-lbs of torque, allowing the Silverado Hybrid to haul loads in excess of 6000 lbs. In a statement to the press, Brian Small, Fleet and Commercial Operations general manager at GM, stated “we knew the Silverado Hybrid was the perfect fit [for Verizon] because of its outstanding city and highway miles per gallon ratings.”
Once they join the Verizon fleet, the Silverados will be primarily used in urban areas, where potentially the savings of using a hybrid drivetrain can be realized the most. According to James Gowen, chief sustainability officer at Verizon Communications, “a major part of our sustainability strategy is to make smart use of lower carbon alternatives to power our fleet.”
In an effort to further reduce fuel consumption, the trucks will incorporate a lightweight bed insert, courtesy of Brand FX. These fiberglass inserts will house the required equipment for servicing Verizon systems, including ladders, wiring connectors and television set boxes.