Fairfield, Connecticut – GE will purchase 25,000 electric vehicles by 2015 for its own fleet and through its Capital Fleet Services business, the largest-ever single electric vehicle commitment.

GE will convert at least half of its 30,000-vehicle global fleet and will partner with fleet customers to deploy a total of 25,000 electric vehicles (EVs) by 2015.

GE will initially purchase 12,000 GM vehicles, beginning with the Chevrolet Volt in 2011, and will add other vehicles as manufacturers expand their EV portfolios. GE and its partners will use a mix of EV technologies to meet their respective needs.

“Electric vehicle technology is real and ready for deployment and we are embracing the transformation with partners like GM and our fleet customers,” said Jeff Immelt, GE chairman and CEO. “By electrifying our own fleet, we will accelerate the adoption curve, drive scale, and move electric vehicles from anticipation to action.”

GE also announced two EV customer experience and learning centres to provide customers, employees and researchers firsthand access to EVs and developing technologies. One will be located outside of Detroit in Van Buren Township, Michigan, as part of GE’s Advanced Manufacturing and Software Technology Center. The other will be located at GE Capital’s Fleet Services business headquarters in Eden Prairie, Minnesota, with several other centres to be announced in 2011. The centres will monitor and evaluate vehicle performance and charging behaviours, driver experiences, service requirements and operational efficiencies, while also affording the opportunity to experience a variety of manufacturers and models, and gain insight into EV deployment.

Connect with Autos.ca