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Global Automakers Highlight Advanced Technologies and Economic Impact in California
May 29, 2012 by David Bauer - State Relations
Global Automakers hosted its seventh annual Lobby Day in Sacramento, California this week. Our member companies met with state legislators and staff from the Governor’s office to highlight our members’ economic contributions to the state.
The auto industry has long viewed California as a great place to do business. For our member companies, the state serves as a hub for their various operations, including corporate headquarters, research and development, sales, parts distribution and training facilities. Our members have invested $1.7 billion in the state as of 2011 year-end and directly employ more than 10,000 Californians. Our members also make up 90% of California’s hybrid vehicle sales.
In addition to the one-on-one member meetings, we hosted a Green Vehicle Display where we gave legislators and staff the opportunity to get up close and personal with some of the greenest vehicles on the roads today. Within walking distance from the state Capitol, legislators could check out the following vehicles and ask product specialists specific questions about the technologies.
- Honda Natural Gas: The Civic Natural Gas is the only OEM-built, dedicated compressed natural gas (CNG) passenger car assembled in America, and the only vehicle certified by the EPA to meet both Federal Tier 2 Bin 2 and Inherently Low Emission Vehicle (ILEV) zero evaporative emission certification standards. In addition to the fleet customers it has been serving since the 1998 model year, the Civic Natural Gas is available to retail customers in 197 dealerships across 36 states.
- Hyundai Tucson ix FCEV: The Hyundai Tucson ix FCEV utilizes fuel cell power from compressed hydrogen, a safe, renewable energy source that has the potential to be a practical long-term alternative fuel solution. The Tucson ix FCEV is equipped with a 100-kilowatt fuel cell system and two hydrogen storage tanks (700bar). The vehicle achieves 73 mpg/ge fuel economy, can travel 406 miles on a single refueling, and can start in temperatures as low as minus 25 degrees Celsius. Hyundai plans global annual production volumes in the several thousands from 2015, depending on the availability of hydrogen refueling infrastructure.
- Kia Rio: The Kia Rio contains a 1.6-liter gasoline direct-injection (GDI) four-cylinder engine that provides 138 horsepower, while maintaining 30/40mpg (city/highway). Idle Stop and Go (ISG) technology senses when the vehicle is stopped for a period and shuts off the engine to maximize fuel efficiency. Eighty five percent of the Rio's materials are recyclable at the end of its lifespan and the vehicle features seat foam material that is 100-percent biodegradable. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Rio’s Greenhouse Gas Emissions are measured at just 261 grams per mile.
- Nissan Leaf: The Nissan LEAF is the world’s first affordable, zero-emission, battery-electric car. Designed specifically for a lithium-ion battery-powered chassis, Nissan LEAF is a medium size hatchback that comfortably seats five adults and has a range of more than 160km (100 miles) to satisfy real-world consumer requirements. Nissan LEAF buyers from all 50 states now have the chance to purchase their own LEAF electric hatchback, as Nissan has made the Leaf available on a nationwide basis since March 2012.
- Toyota Fuel Cell Hybrid: The Toyota Fuel Cell Hybrid Vehicle (FCHV) is based on the popular Toyota Highlander mid-size sport utility vehicle. It utilizes the same hybrid technology used in the Toyota Prius. The FCHV is smog-free and the only by-product is water vapor. It has been certified as a zero emissions vehicle by the California Air Resources Board.