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Electric Vehicles to be Manufactured in the Bronx

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

An electric truck maker is opening up a factory in the Bronx — saying it wants to be near a market for zero-emission delivery vehicles.

Smith Electric Vehicles says it will begin producing a delivery truck called the Newton in a building near Hunts Point beginning next year.

Company president and CEO Bryan Hansel said the company chose the location because the Newton is already used in New York, and he expects that to spread. “The initial trucks that are in New York are with people like Frito Lay, delivering potato chips, Coke-a-Cola,” he said.

Hansel said the $6 million worth of tax credits and other city and state incentives also lured the Saint Louis, Missouri-based company to set up shop in the Bronx. Officials said the trucks cost one-third to one-half the amount of conventional diesel trucks to operate and won't pollute the city's air. And they're easy for drivers to power up.

“In the morning, when they come you unplug it, it's fully charged. You go do your days work. That night you come back, plug it back in and it charges overnight,” Hansel said. “So we're only tapping into the grid and trying to take electricity when it’s at the lowest demand, overnight.”

The factory is expected to employ more than 100 people.

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