PepsiCo’s Frito-Lay North America division is rolling out the company’s first five all-electric delivery trucks in New York City. Frito-Lay plans to deploy 21 trucks in total this year and 150 additional trucks in 2011, which will make Frito-Lay the largest commercial fleet of all-electric trucks in North America, according to the company.
After the roll-out in New York, Frito-Lay will deploy electric trucks in Columbus, Ohio and Ft Worth, Texas, where the company will be piloting electric trucks on regular daily routes. The company has already deployed six electric trucks in Canada.
Once all of the 171 electric trucks are deployed Frito-Lay expects to reduce fuel consumption by 500,000 gallons annually, along with cutting noise pollution and CO2 emissions. The company says each truck will emit 75 percent less greenhouse gases than a conventional diesel truck.
The trucks, designed by Smith Electric Vehicles, operate for up to 100 miles on a single charge, and like other EVs generate zero tailpipe emissions and operate virtually silently. In March, Smith announced it was trying to meet back orders for a host of customers including Frito-Lay, Coca-Cola, and AT&T.
According to hybrid truck industry estimates, U.S. production of hybrid commercial trucks is expected to reach 4,850 units in 2010.
The initial rollout in New York was funded through a grant from the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA). The New York fleet program aligns with Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s PlaNYC, which is an effort to reduce CO2 emissions and improve fuel efficiency of cars and other vehicles in New York City.
With the seventh largest privately owned fleet in the U.S., Frito-Lay has set a goal to become the most fuel efficient fleet in the country.