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Eaton receives largest ever order of hybrid systems

ATLANTA, Ga. - Eaton Corp. received its largest single order of hybrid electric drivetrains in late February.

ATLANTA, Ga. – Eaton Corp. received its largest single order of hybrid electric drivetrains in late February.

Coca-Cola will be purchasing 120 new hybrid drive trucks in 2008, adding to its current fleet of 20 hybrid delivery vehicles.

Eaton officials announced the deal at the Work Truck Show. The sale represents the largest ever North American commercial order of Eaton’s hybrid systems.

Coca-Cola tested and evaluated its current fleet of 20 hybrid delivery trucks, and found they reduced emissions by 32% and fuel consumption by up to 37%.

They’ve also enjoyed lower maintenance costs, Eaton officials announced.

“We have been working with Coca-Cola Enterprises since 2003 to assess our systems,” said Dimitri Kazarinoff, general manager for emerging technologies at Eaton’s Truck Group. “Coca-Cola is demonstrating its commitment to reducing pollution and greenhouse gases, and Eaton is pleased to be a part of this effort. We are looking forward to working with them to deploy the systems into their transportation network.”

Dave Leasure, corporate director of fleet procurement for Coca-Cola Enterprises, added, “In addition to the environmentally-friendly advantages that hybrid vehicles deliver, we are also happy to report that driver acceptance has been highly favourable, especially in high startand-stop applications. The hybrid drive units have been performing very well in communicating with the electronic engines, always giving us the necessary torque and horsepower when it is needed.”

Currently, hybrid delivery trucks come at a premium of about $40,000 per vehicle. However, Kazarinoff said large orders like the one placed by Coca-Cola will help drive down production costs.

“We’re now moving to a scale where we can move these hundreds of units to thousands of units and tens of thousands of units,” he said during a press conference.

Eaton expects to sell 1,500 to 2,000 hybrid systems this year, according to Kazarinoff.

It is believed the Coca-Cola order consists entirely of straight trucks which will be deployed throughout the US.

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