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CHESAPEAKE CONSORTIUM SELECTED TO RECEIVE ELECTRIC VEHICLE GRANT FROM DOT

 CHESAPEAKE CONSORTIUM SELECTED TO RECEIVE
 ELECTRIC VEHICLE GRANT FROM DOT
 ANNAPOLIS, Md., Sept. 1 /PRNewswire/ -- The Chesapeake Consortium announced today that it has been selected to receive a $4 million grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) for the development of advanced transportation systems and electric vehicles.
 "The Chesapeake Consortium will greatly expand electric vehicle technology for transportation while working to develop new ways to meet current and future air quality and energy goals," said Brian Clymer, administrator of the Federal Transit Administration.
 The Chesapeake Consortium was founded in May 1992 by the Westinghouse Electric Corporation, Baltimore Gas & Electric Company, Chrysler Corporation (NYSE: C), and the State of Maryland to coordinate research, resources, and technology related to the development of electric vehicles and advanced transportation systems. State agencies involved are the Maryland departments of Economic and Employment Development, Environment, Transportation and the Maryland Energy Administration. Electric vehicle technologies provide an opportunity to enhance economic development, improve air quality, and decrease dependency on foreign energy.
 "This project is an important step in establishing the consortium as a world leader in electric vehicle systems. We have the right team in place to meet the performance, reliability, cost, quality, and manufacturing challenges of the global electric vehicle industry," said Kelly Overman, chairman of the Chesapeake Consortium and general manager of the Westinghouse Systems Development and Engineering Division.
 In addition to the grant, the Chesapeake Consortium is investing $5.5 million of matching funds in DOT's Electric Vehicle Program. The $9.5-million, 18-month program's goal is to facilitate the commercialization of electric vehicles. A significant portion of the funds will be used to develop supplier manufacturing capabilities for the domestic electric vehicle industry.
 "Results of the accelerated testing under this program will help Chrysler maintain a leadership role in offering electric transportation to fleet users and the general public at affordable costs," said Tom Moore, general manager of the Liberty and Technical Affairs Group at Chrysler.
 "The consortium will create the foundation on which an electric vehicle market can grow," said Ed Skoglin, manager of the Marketing and Energy Services Department at Baltimore Gas & Electric. "Our research will help us better understand the market and allow us to educate consumers about electric vehicles. We will be testing recharging facilities and will determine the impact of electric vehicles on the electric utility industry."
 The State of Maryland will be responsible for public policy assessment and macroeconomic impact analysis and will provide incentives to enable Maryland businesses to become competitive suppliers and manufacturers of electric vehicle components.
 "We believe that the state's participation in this public/private partnership will help Maryland companies get in on the ground floor of this exciting new technology," said Gov. William Donald Schaefer.
 A key focus of this project is the realization of a consumer- oriented and cost-competitive electric vehicle propulsion system. A production design will be developed and evaluated during the program. In parallel with the production design, 10 electric Chrysler minivans with Westinghouse prototype propulsion systems will be built and evaluated.
 The first test vans are expected in January 1993. During the evaluation program, the State of Maryland will use three vehicles as state shuttles. Baltimore Gas & Electric (BG&E) will use four vehicles in fleet service, as well as give consumers the opportunity to evaluate the electric minivan during several ride and drive events. Westinghouse and Chrysler will use three of the vehicles for performance and reliability testing.
 Other significant tasks include marketing studies, infrastructure development studies, supplier base development, environmental and macroeconomic impact studies.
 The DOT program addresses issues key to successful commercialization of electric vehicles and establishment of the domestic electric vehicle industry. The consortium plans to lay the groundwork to assist in meeting market demand for electric vehicles with modest volumes projected in the mid-1990s, and larger volumes by the end of the decade.
 -0- 9/1/92
 /CONTACT: Art Sluzark of Baltimore Gas & Electric, 410-234-7433; Jason Vines of Chrysler, 313-956-5346; Ed Mason for the State of Maryland, 410-974-3751; or Ann Grizzel of Westinghouse, 410-765-6812/
 (WX C) CO: The Chesapeake Consortium; Westinghouse Electric Corporation;
 Baltimore Gas & Electric Company; Chrysler Corporation ST: Maryland IN: AUT TRN CPR SU:


DC -- DC018 -- 5646 09/01/92 17:37 EDT
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Date:Sep 1, 1992
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