While General Electric has a vested interest in see electric and plug-in hybrid cars storm the car market, GE has apparently had a change of heart. The electronics and aviation giant announced that it was no longer seeking to replace much of its fleet with 25,000 hybrid and electric vehicles. Instead, GE will pursue other alt-fuel options, including CNG and propane.
That isn’t to say GE is completely abandoning its plans to buy electrified vehicles; just a few months ago GE announced that it would be buying 2,000 Ford C-Max Energi plug-in hybrids to bolster its fleet. Add to that the thousands of Chevy Volts GE has already purchased, and it is fair to say that GE put its money where its mouth is.
Unfortunately, as GE soon found out, hybrids and electric vehicles don’t make financial sense for every job or situation. With many GE employees logging an average of 100 miles or more a day, the hybrids face diminishing returns when it comes to fuel savings, and a Chevy Volt is a poor replacement for a work truck or van.
Instead of relying solely on EVs and hybrids, GE will instead branch out to include propane and natural gas-powered vehicles in its 30,000 vehicle fleet. GE will also mix these vehicles in with the 1.4 million customer-leased vehicles the company also manages.
Yet another blow to EV and hybrid enthusiasts. Even though GE makes charging stations for EVs and has experimented with pure electric buses, even they seem to see the writing on the wall.