WASHINGTON -- The Obama administration is buying the first 116 plug-in electric vehicles for the federal fleet -- 101 Chevrolet Volts, 10 Nissan Leafs and five Think City EVs, the U.S. General Services Administration said today.
The purchases are part of a pilot project aimed at advancing President Obama’s goal of having 1 million EVs on the road by 2015.
The 116 vehicles will be leased to 20 agencies, including the Energy Department, the Treasury Department and the Navy, in five cities, GSA said in a statement.
The cities are Detroit, Washington, Los Angeles, San Diego and San Francisco, the statement said.
"Diversifying our transportation fleet with hybrids, electric vehicles and other alternative fuel vehicles is a critical element in President Obama’s long-term plan to break our dependence on foreign oil and invest in America’s growing clean energy economy," U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu said.
GSA, which manages the federal fleet, said it will help install charging infrastructure in federal buildings in the five cities.
Last fall, GSA asked automakers to bid on supplying the first 100 EVs for federal purchase. The U.S. government is the nation’s largest vehicle fleet operator.
GSA said it applied four criteria in selecting the vehicles: technical capability, management capability, past performance and price.
Other companies may bid later to become eligible for future purchases, the agency said.
The 116 EVs purchases will save annually about 29,000 gallons of gas, reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 257 metric tons and save taxpayers $116,000 in fuel costs, GSA said.
Starting in 2015, all vehicles purchased by the federal government are to have alternative fuels. These will include hybrid and electric vehicles, and those fueled by compressed natural gas or biofuel.
GSA doubled the federal hybrid fleet over the past year.