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GM Hybrid-Powered Buses Delivered to Montgomery County, MD

Montgomery County celebrates Earth Day by becoming the 36th Community to Opt for GM's Fuel-Saving Technology

ROCKVILLE, Md. - Ride On, the Montgomery County Division of Transit, today announced the addition of five buses powered by General Motors' diesel-electric hybrid propulsion system to its mass transit fleet.

Montgomery County is the 36th community to invest in transit buses powered by General Motors' hybrid technology, which offers greater fuel economy and significantly reduced emissions compared with conventional diesel buses.

Attending a media event celebrating Earth Day and the addition of the GM hybrid-powered buses to Ride On's fleet were Montgomery County Executive Douglas M. Duncan, Montgomery County Council President George Leventhal, County Councilmember Nancy Floreen and representatives from Montgomery County, Ride On and General Motors.

"Montgomery County is a nationally recognized leader in its commitment to environmental quality," said Duncan. "Under our Air Quality Protection Strategy, we have been aggressively acquiring a multi-technology fleet of alternative-fueled vehicles. We are proud to add new, cleaner hybrid buses to help our region meet nationally mandated air quality goals as we lead the way to adopting even more environmentally friendly technologies."

Buses powered by GM's advanced hybrid propulsion technology deliver significantly better fuel economy than traditional buses and produce up to 60 percent fewer oxides of nitrogen emissions and 90 percent fewer particulate, hydrocarbon and carbon monoxide emissions. Other benefits of the buses include reduced maintenance costs resulting from extended brake, engine oil and transmission oil life; providing 50 percent faster acceleration compared with conventional diesel buses, and operational sound levels approaching that of passenger cars.

"Among GM's Environmental Principles is the commitment to creating products and a business that respects the environment," said Elizabeth A. Lowery, GM Vice President of Environment and Energy. "An excellent example of this commitment is with our hybrid bus technology that offers significantly reduced noise and emissions, qualities that are particularly important and beneficial to Montgomery County. We applaud Montgomery County and Ride On for its efforts."

Since 2004, more than 440 GM hybrid-powered buses have been delivered to communities in the U.S. and Canada, including two other transit agencies servicing Maryland, the Washington Metropolitan Area Transportation Authority (WMATA) and the Maryland Transit Administration (MTA). The estimated annual combined fuel savings for the 440 GM hybrid-powered buses is 650,000 gallons.

"The General Motors hybrid diesel-electric drive system for buses uses the most efficient parallel hybrid architecture available in the world today," said Tom Stephens, group vice president of GM Powertrain. "If the U.S. had only 1,000 GM hybrid powered buses operating in major cities, the cumulative savings would be more than 1.5 million gallons of fuel annually."

By the end of the year, another 236 GM hybrid-powered buses are expected to be delivered to several cities.

The clean hybrid technology is manufactured by GM Allison Transmission, maker of transmissions and hybrid propulsion systems for commercial trucks, buses, off-highway equipment and military vehicles, headquartered in Indianapolis. Gillig Corp. of Hayward, Calif., manufactured the buses.

The hybrid technology in these buses has served as the starting point for GM's co-development with DaimlerChrysler and BMW Group of a 2-mode hybrid system that GM will launch next year in the Chevrolet Tahoe and GMC Yukon fullsize SUVs, followed by the Cadillac Escalade in 2008.

General Motors Corp. , the world's largest automaker, has been the global industry sales leader for 75 years. Founded in 1908, GM today employs about 327,000 people around the world. With global headquarters in Detroit, GM manufactures its cars and trucks in 33 countries. In 2005, 9.17 million GM cars and trucks were sold globally under the following brands: Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, GMC, GM Daewoo, Holden, HUMMER, Opel, Pontiac, Saab, Saturn and Vauxhall. GM operates one of the world's leading finance companies, GMAC Financial Services, which offers automotive, residential and commercial financing and insurance. GM's OnStar subsidiary is the industry leader in vehicle safety, security and information services. More information on GM can be found at