BOSTON - XL Hybrids, Inc. is conducting fleet customer pilot tests of its hybrid powertrain technology. The company said tests will begin with the GM 2500 Series vans, including the Chevrolet Express and GMC Savana vans. The hybrid powertrain can reduce fuel consumption and carbon dioxide emissions by up to 20 percent for urban fleets, according to the company.

XL Hybrids is working with equipment upfit companies with fleet maintenance firms to certify them to install the hybrid powertrain on new and used vehicles. The company is initially targeting sales to fleets that operate vans that travel at least 25,000 miles per year in urban and suburban routes.

XL Hybrids said it plans to offer the XL Hybrids (XLH) powertrain as an option through fleet leasing partners in 2012.

The company’s powertrain is comprised of a 2kWh lithium-ion battery pack, a 40kW (53 horsepower) electric motor, and a proprietary hybrid control system that operates with the original manufacturer’s 4.8L internal combustion engine and automatic transmission.

The company said that although this technology provides flexibility for fleets to operate the vehicle in any application, fleets will achieve maximum fuel savings with vehicles on urban or mixed suburban and urban routes. The system can provide an additional 240 foot-pounds of torque at the driveshaft when the hybrid electric motor assists during acceleration.

The company said additional benefits include savings between $1,500 and $2,500 or more per year due to improved fuel economy; a three-to-five year timeframe for ROI; less than a single day for installation; and increased low-end torque.

XL Hybrids said its new facility in Boston, Mass. will serve as the company’s headquarters and engineering center. To learn more about the hybrid van specifications and about how to pilot test the hybrid technology, please visit