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Driving Change: Coca-Cola Transforms Service Vans to Hybrid Vehicles

By:  Sheree Robinson Dec 11, 2013
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Hybrid Coca-Cola Truck

Hybrid Coca-Cola Truck

Coca-Cola will ring in the New Year with a hybrid-electric makeover for its service vans. The Company is converting all of its newly purchased Chevrolet Express service vans into fuel-efficient hybrid-electric vehicles using XL Hybrids’ innovative powertrain technology. The updated vans will be traversing roads across the country by year’s end.

Coca-Cola is no stranger to fuel-efficient transportation. The Company currently operates the largest heavy-duty hybrid electric delivery fleet in North America. The addition of 100 new hybrid service vans helps expand fuel-efficient options in the Company’s light-duty fleet.

“Adoption of this hybrid technology supports Coca-Cola’s goal to reduce the carbon footprint embedded in ‘the drink in your hand’ by 25 percent by 2020,” said Bruce Karas, Vice President of Environment and Sustainability for Coca-Cola. “We continue to make energy-saving investments because they are good for business, good for the communities we serve and good for the planet.”

The powertrain technology system installs directly on each existing van transmission transforming it into a fuel-efficient hybrid vehicle. Early tests of this hybrid technology have shown a 15 to 20 percent fuel reduction compared to the Company’s conventional vans.

“The expansion of our light-duty fleet is only one part of our Company’s overall energy-efficiency plan. Coca-Cola is exploring the use of other alternative fuel such as natural gas and propane,” said Karas. “We are also training our drivers in eco-driving techniques, such as minimal braking and early gear changes to help increase productivity.”

The 100 new hybrid vans are expected to eliminate about 4,000 total tons of carbon dioxide emissions that conventional vans would produce over their 10-year life span. Because of the low maintenance and fuel savings, the powertrain unit will pay for itself three times over during its life span. A technology that helps Coca-Cola emissions reduction goals while saving money is a win-win for the Company.  

Learn more about Coca-Cola’s climate protection goals and progress in the 2013 Climate Protection Report.