Lightning Hybrids Named Ford QVM for Alt-Power Options


Lightning Hybrids, designer and manufacturer of the hydraulic hybrid Energy Recovery System (ERS) for medium- and heavy-duty fleet vehicles, has been named an Advanced Fuel Qualified Vehicle Modifier (QVM) by Ford Motor Co.

Lightning Hybrids is one of three initial vehicle modifiers, and the only hydraulic hybrid manufacturer, in the new eQVM program. According to the company, the program helps fleet and commercial customers meet their specific needs for durable hybrid work trucks that retain the original powertrain warranty.

“For commercial and government fleets working to save fuel and substantially reduce emissions, our ERS technology is a compelling option for all of Ford’s medium- and heavy-duty platforms, backed by the peace of mind offered by Ford’s eQVM program,” says Tim Reeser, CEO of Lightning Hybrids. “Our system reduces NOx emissions by half and CO2 emissions by 25 percent compared to vehicles without it, and fleets see a quick return on investment.”

Lightning Hybrids offers the ERS for the Ford E-350 and E-450 chassis; F-350 to F-550 Super Duty trucks; F-650 and F-750 medium-duty trucks; and F-59 chassis.

As reported, the system from Lightning Hybrids is a patented, parallel hydraulic hybrid system with no electric batteries. Hydraulic pumps and a lightweight accumulator brake the vehicle, store the braking energy and then use that stored energy to provide power to the wheels. In doing so, fuel is saved, and emissions are reduced.

Lightning Hybrids says that the ERS can be installed on new vehicles and retrofitted on vehicles already in service. It is sold through a network of dealers and upfitters.

QVM is Ford’s quality recognition given to aftermarket adaptive equipment installers that meet manufacturing guidelines and best practices. Ford’s QVM qualification process includes on-site assessments at each location to verify that the operation meets manufacturing, assembly, workmanship, customer service and quality requirements, as well as that it has processes in place to produce vehicles that meet federal regulations.

Lightning Hybrids is a growing green-vehicle company that is expanding its portfolio of customers. Last fall, as previously reported, UPS placed 50 of Lightning Hybrids’ units in its Chicago fleet. Kiessling Transit, a Massachusetts-based paratransit bus company, recently doubled the size of its hydraulic hybrid green fleet to 70 vehicles. Further, the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory in Golden, Colo., and Denali National Park in Alaska also operate vehicles with Lightning Hybrids’ system.

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