Aurora Looks to Get a Charge out of New Electric Motorcars
Byline: Justin Kmitch firstname.lastname@example.org
Last year was the year of the Segway in Aurora, and as the city continues to push its eco-friendly initiatives, 2009 is shaping up to be quite a GEM as well.
The cityAEs parks and recreation department has purchased two Global Electric Motorcars, or GEMs, from Chrysler to begin replacing some of the gas-powered utility carts used for park maintenance.
Parks Director Jim Pilmer said he first saw the bubble-shaped electric cars being used on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., by National Parks employees. Since then, he said, Chicago has put 250 of the same cars into service.
According to Chrysler, the cars can work in nearly any environment, including indoors, because they have no tailpipe emissions. The vehicles feature six 12-volt flooded electrolyte batteries for a range of up to 30 miles on a charge and a 70-by-48-inch flatbed with a 700-pound cargo capacity.
City officials estimate the $9,000 vehicles cost about 2
cents a mile to operate. …