GE Opens Innovation Center for Alternative Fuel Vehicles

by Ernie Hernandez on June 4, 2012

GE Capital Logo

We’re not the only ones that think EVs will make good fleet vehicles

Innovation seems to be the word of the moment. Nissan has embraced the Innovation for All theme as their global ad campaign. GE now brings us their Innovation Center for Alternative Fuel Vehicles.

Locating the center in Eden Prairie, Minnesota gives company fleet managers a chance to check out the town. And who wouldn’t want to? Never having heard of Eden Prairie before we Googled it, like any good American would. And right there on the lower navigation bar of the town’s website is a link to Eden Prairie Liquor. What’s not to like?

The center offers a half-mile test track to evaluate alternative fuel vehicles of all types – electric, natural gas, propane, and hydrogen. GE also says other formats, but we have a hard time thinking of any, unless you start throwing in garbage powered vehicles like the DeLorean Time Machine that Doc Brown built in the “Back to the Future” trilogy. An important feature of the facility is that it will offer GE’s commercial customers the ability to evaluate a number of different alternative fuel vehicles to determine if one or more might be right for their needs. Not only that, they will have access to the education and experience of GE’s staff – folks schooled in the benefits of such vehicles.

In addition to the test track, the facility offers 6,000 square feet of classroom and showroom space to learn more about the various technologies on display on the track. Being strong believers in the power of product knowledge, having the technology and the expertise available to supplement the driving experience in the vehicles can prove invaluable. Recognizing that an electric van (such as the upcoming Nissan e-NV200) just might be the ticket to not only a cleaner society but lower operating costs over the life of the vehicle could be a significant factor in moving the general public to the idea that an electric car just might be right for them too.

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