The Auto Channel
The Largest Independent Automotive Research Resource
Official Website of the New Car Buyer

Press Release

Zinc Air Transportation Announces Zinc-Air Battery Testing

02/13/97

Zinc Air Transportation tests long-range battery in cold
climate

BURBANK, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE) -- Zinc Air Transportation, a global
partnership involving B.A.T. International (OTC:BAAT), Kummerow NA and
Green Fuel Resources, will be testing a new zinc-air battery in an
electric van at a test track in Utah on Feb. 14-15 (weather
permitting).

The test is intended to demonstrate that an electric vehicle (EV) can
offer a practical driving range, even in midwinter cold- weather
conditions (targeted range of more than 300 miles on a single charge),
using a steel vehicle with poor aerodynamics.

This is a significant milestone in the evolution of EV battery
technology, particularly when considering that the recently unveiled
General Motors EV1 can only go about 12 miles in below-freezing
weather (as quoted in EV Today, Don Hudler/president of Saturn, GM
Division marketing EV1), even with the latest developments in
aerodynamic design and lightweight materials.

This event will have a profound effect on transportation planners,
policy makers and auto companies considering the commercial viability
of electric vehicles and their potential to alleviate worldwide
environmental and energy problems.

The electric delivery van has been built as a result of cooperative
contributions from all three companies (B.A.T., KCNA and GFR).

Kummerow has recently supplied a set of high-energy-density, advanced
zinc-air batteries. Green Fuel Resources has provided financial
support and input on preproduction requirements for vehicle
design. B.A.T.  has provided the vehicle and electric drive system and
completed all work on the preproduction prototype model.

The vehicle chassis has been obtained from an Asian manufacturer that
B.A.T. has an agreement with to obtain ``gliders,'' (vehicles without
engines). The chassis is ideal because it has five doors for easy
access, a large payload capacity, is very lightweight, has high ground
clearance and excellent design features.

The delivery van will have the latest EV technology, including an
inexpensive, lightweight AC drive system that is easy to
maintain. Other features include regenerative braking, Goodyear
low-rolling-resistance tires and an innovative design.

The cold-weather, long-distance test will be completed at the Santana
race track in Springville, Utah, 40 miles south of Salt Lake City. The
test will verify that a production vehicle can be mass produced
quickly and can achieve a very long range, even in cold weather. A
second, warm-weather, test is planned in the near future.

Zinc Air Transportation is working with partners in the United States,
Asia and Europe to introduce the technology and move quickly to
high-volume manufacturing.  A tour of targeted Asian cities is planned
this spring to demonstrate the technology. A showcase facility is
being set up in Singapore that will feature electric delivery
vehicles, taxis, mini-vehicles and buses.

Asia is particularly well suited for zinc-air vehicles because the
quick-change battery replacement system can provide alternative
infrastructure similar to gasoline stations and allow electric vehicle
range and refueling requirements to be very similar to the current
internal combustion vehicle, with no pollution.

KCNA zinc-air batteries were developed by Dr. Hans Juergen Pauling, a
young, award-winning German chemist.  KCNA zinc-air batteries are
particularly well suited for EV use because of their high-energy
density relative to other batteries.

Zinc-air batteries have at least four times the energy density of a
lead-acid battery (used in the GM EV1), and twice the energy density
of a nickel-metal-hydride battery.

At the same time, the battery is very low in cost ($300/kwh now,
$100/kwh in 1998 -- less than lead-acid batteries), particularly when
compared with other advanced batteries (nickel-metal-hydride batteries
cost 10 times more now). This provides a practical, affordable battery
system for an electric vehicle that can provide very long range with
no pollution.

CONTACT: B.A.T. International, Burbank | Bill Wason/Chris Martin,
818/565-5555 | 818/565-5559 (fax)