e-mobility Italy: launch of new approach to sustainable mobility
In the future, drivers in Rome, Pisa and Milan will fill up with electricity.
More than 100 vehicles and at least 400 intelligent recharging points on the Enel network
Innovative power technology and infrastructure.
Testing to begin in 2010.
Rome, 2 December 2008 With e-mobility Italy, smart, the youngest and most innovative brand of the Daimler Group, and Enel, Italys largest electricity company and Europes second largest listed utility by installed capacity, have launched one of the worlds largest electric mobility projects. The initiative, an unprecedented integrated approach to electric mobility, will foster the spread and efficient use of electric vehicles boasting cutting-edge recharging technology, thanks to the development of infrastructure specifically tailored for customers, providing intelligent, safe services. The electric vehicles will enter service in 2010 and will be designed to meet the daily needs of drivers effectively and economically.
This is the substance of the agreement signed today by Fulvio Conti, the CEO and General Manager of Enel, and Bram Schot, Chairman and CEO of Mercedes-Benz Italia, in the presence of the Chairman of the Transportation Committee of the Italian Chamber of Deputies, the Mayor of Pisa, Marco Filippeschi, and the Environmental Councillor of the Municipality of Rome, Fabio De Lillo, on behalf of the Mayor Gianni Alemanno.
As part of the project, Daimler will supply and maintain more than 100 electric vehicles for customers in Rome, Pisa headquarters of Enels Research Centre and Milan. Enel will be responsible for the development, implementation and operation of the infrastructure, with more than 400 dedicated recharging points, as well as the central control system. These three cities were selected because they represent the diverse lifestyles and living arrangements that characterise Italy today.
But that is not enough. The electricity used to supply the electric cars will be certified by Renewable Energy Certificate System (RECS), an international system involving 25 European countries that was established to finance the development of renewable energy resources, such as water, the sun, wind and geothermal resources. Already, 1.3 million customers have already signed up for this type of plan, provided by Enel Energia on the free market.
This is just one more key benefit in addition to the other advantages of using electric mobility at the local and national level: in cities and other trafficked areas, the elimination of all emissions, including carbon dioxide (CO2), benzene, sulphur dioxide, nitrogen oxides and particulates. For example, if one fourth of the cars circulating in a city like Pisa were electric, emissions of CO2 would diminish by 25 thousand metric tons a year (-25%) and other emissions would decline significantly. Absorbing 25 thousand tons of CO2 a year would take a forest of about 32 million square metres (32 square kilometres: think of a rectangle 10 km long and 3.2 km wide, the equivalent of some 4,500 football fields.
The savings would be also be substantial, an issue close to the hearts of consumers : with an electric car 10 euros would be enough to travel an average of 280 km, compared with 120 km for an ordinary car with a traditional petrol engine.
From today, a joint team of Enel and Daimler engineers and technicians will be working on developing the project, with testing scheduled to begin in 2010.
In designing and implementing the recharging infrastructure, which will be able to communicate with the vehicles, Enel can count on its technological leadership of its smart grid: the recharging system will adopt the technology employed in the 32 million remotely operated digital metres that the company has installed in Italian homes since 2001. The system is currently the only one in the world that enables communication with customers and the remote management of an entire range of operations.
In order to go beyond the experimental phase of electric mobility it is necessary to create an advanced recharging and service system to meet drivers needs, making the development of this sector in Italy possible and realistic. The infrastructure will enable drivers in the e-mobility Italy initiative to locate available recharging points, just like the current system for Enel employees, who each morning receive the information they need to provide assistance and maintenance services for the entire Italian distribution network directly in their company vehicles.
The vehicles to be used in the e-mobility Italy project will be smart fortwos.
smart has become a metropolitan icon and, ten years after its debut on the market, continues to impress the world with the introduction of a revolutionary model: the smart fortwo electric drive, with a zero-emission electric motor. With this initiative, the young brand underscores its pioneering role in the creation of concept cars for tomorrows eco-sustainable individual mobility.
With the smart fortwo electric drive, in 2007 Daimler launched a pilot programme for an entirely electric car. In London, customers are now testing 100 smart fortwo electric drives. Last October, Daimler, in collaboration with RWE, began a similar project in Berlin, with the use of more than 100 smart fortwos and Mercedes-Benz electric vehicles.
At the end of 2009, smart will again lead the world in beginning production of a major series of the smart fortwo electric drive.
The e-mobility Italy project joins the specific skills and substantial experience of two major groups, with a view to creating a system of sustainable, environmentally friendly mobility in an urban context. This initiative is an excellent example of what can be achieved in the protection of the environment and climate when energy suppliers and the automobile industry join forces.