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This is where lead by example is applied. The government is buying 101 Chevy Volts and installing charging stations. Yea in the end were paying for it with our tax money, but at least this will help get rid of some gas guzzling vehicles in the U.S. Governments fleet.

Only downside, 5 states will get the charging stations for now, seems like plans for mass amounts of green vehicles will be brought out gradually.

David Shepardson/ Detroit News Washington Bureau

The Obama administration announced today it is buying more than 100 plug-in electric vehicles and will install charging stations in government buildings in five cities, including Detroit.

The General Services Administration — which oversees most of the federal government's 600,000 vehicle fleet — plans to buy 116 plug-in electric vehicles, including 101 extended-range Chevrolet Volts, 10 battery electric Nissan Leafs and five Think City EV models from Finish EV startup, the agency said today.

As part of a pilot project, the vehicles are to be placed with 20 government agencies in five cities — Detroit, Washington, D.C., San Diego, San Francisco and Los Angeles. All branches of the U.S. military — including some recruiters — will get electric vehicles under the pilot program as will the Veterans Administration and the Energy Department.

"This electric vehicle pilot will leverage GSA's role as the government's fleet operator and landlord to successfully integrate advanced vehicles and infrastructure into the government fleet," said GSA Administrator Martha Johnson.

In future years, the government could dramatically increase the number of electric vehicles because agencies will be able to order EVs as they currently order other vehicles on the government schedule.

The government is expected to install about 100 charging stations at federal buildings in California, Washington, D.C., and Michigan.

GSA buys the vehicles for two-thirds of the federal fleet, acquiring about 65,000 new vehicles annually. The U.S. Post Office owns and buys the remaining vehicles.

The purchase of the new EVs will not increase the overall size of the fleet. Because of stiff demand for EVs, GSA is not expected to take possession of the Chevrolet Volts and the other electric vehicles until 2012. In the case of the Leafs, a U.S. Nissan dealer bid to sell the Leafs - not the Japanese automaker directly.

The government made the purchase decisions after accepting competitive bids from automakers.

GM assembles the Volt at its Detroit-Hamtramck plant, while Nissan plans to start building the Leaf in Tennessee next year. Finish Think assembles the EV City in Elkhart, Ind., and has its North American headquarters in Dearborn. Valmet Automotive builds the Think in Europe and is a stakeholder in the EV startup.

GSA said in April that the 35,000 vehicles ordered so far this year boast an average improvement in fuel efficiency of 21 percent. The average miles per gallon is 23.4, up from last year's 19.1.

The new cars will save 2.4 million gallons of fuel and about $9 million annually. The administration has doubled the number of hybrids in the federal fleet over the last two years.

President Barack Obama wants to cut oil imports by one-third by 2025 over 2008 levels and to put 1 million plug-in electric vehicles on the road by 2015.

Earlier this year, Obama said all federal vehicles purchased by 2015 would be "advanced technology" vehicles.

Under a separate executive order, Obama has called on the federal government to reduce gasoline usage by 30 percent by 2020 for the federal fleet.

From The Detroit News: Autos Insider | U.S. buying 101 Chevy Volts, will install gov't charging stations | The Detroit News
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