November 13, 2006

Manitoba Hydro to test plug-in hybrid electric vehicle

Winnipeg, Manitoba – Manitoba Hydro has announced a research and development project to review the potential of plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) and the possible effect the new technology could have on future electrical load growth and energy markets.

“This new technology has potential to offer multiple benefits to Manitobans, including significantly reducing driving costs and vehicle emissions,” says Greg Selinger, minister responsible for Manitoba Hydro. “Manitoba is well positioned to take advantage of plug-in vehicles because of our low-cost, clean energy advantage.”

The company helped to convert one of its 2005 Toyota Prius cars with a battery pack that can be plugged in and charged at any standard 120-volt outlet. The modified vehicle can effectively run as an electric car for approximately 50 km; after that, it will run as a conventional gasoline/electric hybrid. The conversion was completed in August 2006 in Monrovia, California with the assistance of CS Energy.

Manitoba Hydro will monitor the vehicle in everyday use as commuter transportation, especially with regard to battery performance in the province’s cold weather conditions.

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