Obscure NYC Agency Plucks 184 Ford Mustang Mach-E Electric Vehicles From EV Pot

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The Intertubes are all abuzz with news that New York City has just spent $11.5 million to buy 184 Ford Mustang Mach-E GT crossover SUV electric vehicles to be distributed amongst the NYC Police Department and various other city agencies.

184 Ford Mustang Mach-E Electric Vehicles And The NYC DCAS

As of this writing, Ford has not issued a press release for this newsworthy news, having left that up to a little known New York City agency, the Department of Citywide Administrative Services.

The DCAS dropped their press release on December 29, announcing that it is “placing an order” for 184 Ford Mustang Mach-E electric vehicles. The phrasing indicates that the paper trail has yet to reach its final conclusion. However, the deal appears to be done for all intents and purposes, since the contract was registered on December 22. Our friends over at Detroit News have also confirmed that all EVs 184 are Mach-E GTs, which is the high performance version of the popular all-electric plug-in but is not to be confused with the GT “Performance Edition.”

That’s pretty big news, but it pales beside a similar announcement back in September, when DCAS announced that it earmarked $75 million for a laundry list of fleet electrification programs including:

    1. 300 electric vehicles to replace fossil fuel-powered models
    2. 275 fast vehicle chargers
    3. 20 portable vehicle chargers
    4. 11 new solar charging carports
    5. 3 electric buses to replace diesel models
    6. 78 electric ambulances

The September investment package also included funding to retrofit 125 diesel trucks with electric drive.

NYC DCAS ♥ Electric Vehicles

New York City pops up regularly on the CleanTechnica radar, some interesting examples being flow batteries and electric beer delivery trucks. Reviewing e-bikes around the streets of New York has also become something of a habit, including the two-battery Flluid e-bike from Fuell and a Harley-Davidson Serial 1 prototype e-bike.

However, the DCAS has been all but invisible. A lone exception appeared in 2016, when our own James Ayre took note of a 50-car Chevy Bolt EV purchase, and just last month, when Johanna Crider reported on a Bloomberg catch regarding a 250-car deal under consideration for the purchase of electric vehicles from Tesla. The contract would reportedly provide the city with the option to purchase any number of cars up to 250, including zero.

That’s not much attention for a city agency that has shouldered the responsibility for converting the municipal fleet of almost 30,000 vehicles to electric drive by 2035. DCAS also oversees 56 public buildings in New York City and purchases more than $1 billion in supplies and equipment each year, which puts that $11.5 million contract in perspective.

In fact, as DCAS points out, the $11.5 million initial order for 184 Mustang Mach-E electric vehicles is small potatoes compared to a $420 million carbon-reducing investment package announced by New York City Mayor Bill DeBlasio as a parting gift to Mayor-elect Eric Adams on December 22, which falls upon DCAS to administer.

$420 Million To Decarbonize New York City’s Vehicle Fleet

New York City’s $420 million vehicle decarbonization package seems to have slipped under the CleanTechnica radar, so now would be a good time to catch up.

As Mayor DeBlasio and DCAS explain, the $420 million will go towards the purchase of 1,250 electric vehicles in 2022 and the installation of at least 1,776 fast chargers by 2030, at least 100 of which will be open to the public.

The city also plans to add 180 transportable chargers and solar carports for electric vehicles, which could be set up in different locations for emergency response and other needs.

Fans of 100% electrification may not be thrilled to learn that the vehicle decarbonization plan also includes renewable diesel, at least for the time being.

The city anticipates that it will take time to electrify fire trucks and other heavy duty equipment used in emergency response, though it’s possible that renewable diesel will be relegated to backup use. Oshkosh, for example, has just introduced an electric fire truck equipped with diesel tanks if more juice is needed. The US military’s interest in electric vehicles could also help accelerate the switch to electric drive for specialized vehicles.

What About The Buildings?

Decarbonizing fleet vehicles is actually the more do-able part of the city’s $4.6 billion, 10-year climate action plan. Vaporizing the fossil energy footprint of municipal buildings is a whole ‘nother can of worms.

To help take that on, the city is also advocating for the construction of two new transmission lines that will bring more renewable energy into its grid, from upstate New York and Canada. That is not so much of a sure thing considering the stumbling blocks faced by clean energy transmission projects in other states, so stay tuned for more on that.

Converting oil-heated buildings to electricity is a tough row to hoe. Heat pumps could play a role, as well as rooftop solar panels and other on-site energy scavenging devices.

It’s True: Electric Vehicles Cost Less

Circling back around to that deal for up to 250 electric vehicles from Tesla, last week our friends over at StreetsblogNYC caught word that the deal does appear to be heading through the pipeline. The matter of how the cars will be serviced is apparently yet to be resolved, but Streetsblog cites the DCAS on the all-important bottom line.

“The Department of Citywide Administrative Services says the $49,000 Tesla is a money-saver: The typical NYPD squad car or SUV ranges from $35,000 to close to $58,000, but then needs costly fuel and also far more maintenance than electric cars typically require,” Streetsblog writes.

The typical gas-powered police cruiser puts a considerable amount of miles on the engine just idling, so the overall result of electrification is a more efficient use of machinery. The switch to charging stations will also result in considerable savings on costs related to running and maintaining fuel depots.

The potential for home charging could also help create new labor-saving efficiencies, by eliminating detours to fueling stations. In that regard it’s worth mentioning that public gas stations in New York and other cities have been disappearing at a regular clip.

A quick look-see at Ford’s recent press releases reveals an additional benefit. Last week Ford pointed out that its new all-electric Lightning F-150 pickup truck has vehicle-to-vehicle battery charging capability, which would provide for additional flexibility in case of emergency or other unforeseen circumstances.

As for those 184 new Mustang Mach-E GT electric vehicles, why stop at GT when you can beat New York City to the punch and get the Performance Edition?

“Taking you to the next level of all-electric exhilaration, the GT Performance Edition harnesses 480 horsepower and 634 lb.-ft. of tire-spinning torque to go from 0–60 mph in 3.5 seconds,” Ford observes, adding that the estimated battery range on the Performance Edition is 270 miles.

Gosh, what are they putting in those batteries nowadays?

Follow me on Twitter @TinaMCasey.

Image (screenshot): 2022 Ford Mustang Mach-E GT Performance Edition electric vehicle (courtesy of Ford Motor Company).

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Tina Casey

Tina specializes in advanced energy technology, military sustainability, emerging materials, biofuels, ESG and related policy and political matters. Views expressed are her own. Follow her on LinkedIn, Threads, or Bluesky.

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