Consumer Vehicles : Consumer Vehicles

CNG isn’t just for businesses and governments. It can work for you too.

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The U.S. currently has about 250,000 natural gas vehicles (NGVs) on the road today, according to GE – less than 0.1% of total U.S. vehicles – mostly owned by fleets. The heavy- and medium-duty market segments have seen the most use with city transit buses, refuse trucks and delivery vans. Compressed natural gas (CNG) has been used widely for personal transportation within the light-duty segment in highly developed nations for many years. In fact, natural gas-rich countries such as Brazil, Argentina, and Iran already have more than 1 million NGVs each, and even gas importer Italy exceeds 700,000.

Light-duty trucks, SUVs and sedans can all be powered with CNG while retaining nearly the same engine power and fuel efficiency as their gasoline-powered counterparts.

One factor that has slowed the adoption of CNG vehicles within the light-duty market is the number of vehicles that can be purchased directly from the manufacturer with a CNG-ready engine. The majority of NGVs on the road today need their existing engine retrofitted by a certified technician utilizing an Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)- or California Air Resources Board (CARB)-certified kit to only run on CNG (a dedicated vehicle) or CNG and gasoline (a bi-fuel vehicle).

Luckily, more and more auto manufacturers are offering designated CNG vehicles as fleet owners and individual consumers see the benefits of natural gas. Many large U.S. cities have made the decision to use natural gas in their taxi fleets, as there are multiple CNG kits available, such as the Chevy Impala and the Ford Transit Connect. Service companies such as AT&T, Verizon and UPS have found solutions for their vans and are utilizing clean, cost-saving natural gas in multiple markets. Today, everyone from the local plumber to energy companies has an option for a natural gas conversion on light-duty vehicles.

As the case for CNG as a transportation fuel continues to grow and infrastructure expands, the number of available light-duty options available through certified conversion kits and original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) such as Ford, GM and Chrysler will increase.

Honda Civic Natural Gas

Sold to fleets and individuals throughout the U.S. since 1998, Honda’s natural gas-powered Civic Natural Gas is built in the company’s Civic factory in Greensburg, Indiana. Both fleet and retail customers appreciate the fact that it relies on North American supplies of natural gas, not imported oil, for fuel. Not to mention, natural gas is more economical than gasoline and produces cleaner exhaust when driven in any city. Customers can also fill their tanks to suit their needs by utilizing public refueling infrastructure or residential refueling devices. Honda’s Civic Natural Gas is now available at Honda dealerships in 38 states.

For more information on the Honda GX, visit http://automobiles.honda.com/civic-natural-gas.​

Chevrolet Silverado 2500 and GMC Sierra 2500 HD

General Motors introduced two CNG-powered pickups in its 2013 line. The Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra 2500 HD were available for order in spring 2012, with a 6.0-liter V-8 engine that can run on CNG or gasoline. Computer control systems automatically switch between the fuels. The trucks can be ordered through any dealer, and will be delivered directly to customers by GM’s Tier One supplier, Impco.

To get more information on GM vehicles, visit http://www.gm.com/content/gmcom/home/vehicles/browseByType.html.

Dodge Ram 2500 CNG

One of the first mass-produced CNG pickup in the U.S., the Dodge Ram 2500 CNG features an 18.2 gasoline gallon equivalent (GGE) tank with an estimated range of 255 miles. It also has an eight-gallon gasoline tank. Availability began in summer 2012. Learn more about the Dodge Ram at http://www.ramtrucks.com.

 

Ford F250 and F350

Get the country’s most popular truck line for 30 years with an alternative fuel. Ford’s F250 and F350 Super Duty trucks are manufactured in Kentucky and optional bi-fuel CNG conversions are performed by many Ford-supported qualified vehicle modifiers (QVMs). They can be sold and serviced by authorized Ford dealers. Using rigorous OEM testing for safety and durability, they meet EPA 2012 standards.

Compare Ford pickup models at http://www.ford.com/trucks/superduty/models.​​

GM Cargo Vans

GM offers full warranties along with the option to buy a new Chevrolet Express or GMC Savana cargo van. Introduced in the 2011 model year, the vans feature CNG fuel systems made and installed by Productive Concepts.

To get more information on GM vehicles, visit http://www.gm.com/content/gmcom/home/vehicles/browseByType.html.​​​