Monsanto Fleet First Customer of GM E85 Full-Size Pickups
Monsanto is ordering 60 of General Motors’ new Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra full-size pickup trucks. General Motors announced on Nov. 27, 2001, that its Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra full-size pickup trucks will be available with the option to operate on ethanol (E85) fuel.
“We’re ordering more in January or February, so we’ll have approximately 100 before the end of the first quarter of 2002,” Monsanto Fleet Manager Kellie Duenke said in an interview with Automotive Fleet. She said the purchase was part of Monsanto’s commitment to use bioenergy and renewable fuels. “We’re planning on joining the National Ethanol Vehicle Coalition to help promote the building of E85 stations across the country,” she said. She said the vehicles will be mostly used for field sales.
E85, a renewable fuel made from starch crops such as corn, helps reduce air pollution and the U.S. dependence on foreign oil. In addition, E85 vehicles meet U.S. Department of Energy mandates for alternative-fuel-powered vehicles.
The E85-compatible Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra are additions to GM’s entire E85-compatible truck lineup. GM also offers the Chevrolet S-10 and GMC Sonoma compact pickups, and Chevrolet Tahoe and Suburban and GMC Yukon and Yukon XL sport/utility vehicles, with E85 compatibility.
The E85-compatibility feature will be offered as a special equipment option on select 1500 series Chevrolet Silverados and GMC Sierras equipped with the 5300 Vortec engine. The option is available for customer orders through all Chevrolet and GMC dealers. Vehicle production is expected to begin in early 2002.
For more information on GM’s entire portfolio of alternative-fuel vehicles, visit www.gmaltfuel.com. The Web site includes information such as a listing of GM’s alternative-fuel vehicle dealerships and available refueling sites.