General Motors exhibited its alternative-fuel vehicles (AFVs) at the 2002 National Clean Cities Conference and Exposition at the Cox Convention Center on May 12-15, 2002. Clean Cities is a program sponsored by the U.S. Dept. of Energy that is designed to encourage the use of AFVs and support infrastructure throughout the nation. The Clean Cities program currently consists of nearly 80 coalitions in 39 states. GM displayed some of its 2003-model-year AFV portfolio, which includes: - The introduction of a new CNG van cutaway model. This is an edition of the redesigned 2003 GM Chevrolet Express and GMC Savana full-size passenger and cargo vans that operate either with a bi-fuel or dedicated CNG fuel system. Wheelbases are available in 159 inches or 177 inches, and the fuel tanks will hold 20.6 gasoline gallon equivalent (gge) for bi-fuel or 29.7 gge for dedicated CNG. The 2003-model year is the first time GM will offer the dedicated CNG fuel system on the Express and Savana cutaway vans. - Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra Flexible Fuel E85-powered full-size pickup. - Chevrolet Tahoe/Suburban and GMC Yukon/Yukon XL Flexible Fuel E85 full-size SUV, powered by the 285-horsepower, 5.3L V8 Vortec engine. During the general session GM’s Ken Cameron, program executive for research, development and planning for Fuel Cell Commercialization Activities, participated in a moderated panel of experts discussing the “Pathways to a Hydrogen Future.” The panel discussed the likelihood of near-term commercialization of fuel cells and the role natural gas and other alternative fuels play in building a bridge to the future. Recently, GM announced its shipment of the first fuel cell demonstration vehicle, the HydroGen1, to the California Fuel Cell Partnership for review and evaluation. The HydroGen1 has been used in rigorous field testing around the world and has accumulated more than 20,000 miles. In addition, Cameron talked about GM’s AUTOnomy concept vehicle, which is designed from the ground up around a fuel cell propulsion system, and combines fuel cells with x-by-wire technology to allow electronic rather than mechanical control of steering and braking. Also on May 13, GM’s Sharon Dudley-Parham, assistant brand manager for alternative-fuel vehicles, presented and participated in a panel discussion, “Light Duty Alternative Fuel Vehicles: Product Roll-Out.” Items that were discussed included 2003-model-year product production schedules and availability, plus current marketing and promotional initiatives.

Originally posted on Fleet Financials