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Posts from December 0

Natural Gas Vehicles 2014: Caution, not Government Subsidies

By <a class="post-author" href="/about#a_brooks">Allen Brooks</a> -- July 8, 2014

“It was somewhat disconcerting to hear about the economic challenges from NGV fleet operators. In an interview [one] said: ‘Right now, we’re doing it solely for sustainability. We’re not saving any money. I’m glad to hear we’re not the only one to struggle with fuel mileage’.”

Several weeks ago, the Natural Gas Vehicle USA Conference was held in Houston, Texas. The promise of the industry was discussed in light of the economic challenge facing the fuel’s acceptance for transportation.

There are a handful of vehicles in Houston powered by compressed natural gas. Their owners, many of whom are affiliated with the natural gas or energy industries, talked about the benefits of their cars. 

However, they are often forced to acknowledge the challenges that come with owning a natural gas vehicle (NGV), which includes the loss of significant storage space in the vehicle due to the need for a large fuel tank. 

Natural Gas Prices Spur Truckmaker Interest (Market, not political, development)

By Robert Bradley Jr. -- March 8, 2012

The Wall Street Journal‘s Marketplace headline of March 5th said much: “Natural Gas to Power Pickups.” The piece did not mention the Nat Gas Act or other special government favors, just an effort by U.S. automakers to get natural-gas-fueled trucks into the mix given the large BTU disparity between gas and gasoline/diesel prices.

Reporter Jeff Bennett described a “growing wave” of interest in natural gas trucks:

On Tuesday, Chrysler Group LLC plans to disclose it will build the first production-line pickup truck powered by natural gas. The auto maker is promising to build at least 2,000 heavy-duty Ram bi-fuel trucks that run on a combination of compressed natural gas and gasoline starting in June.

General Motors Co. on Monday plans to disclose it will offer bi-fuel Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra 2500 pickups in the fourth quarter.