New low-speed electric vehicles in operation at Fort McCoy
A new low-speed electric vehicle is put into service at Fort McCoy.

FORT McCOY, Wis. - Eight low-speed electric vehicles, which are powered by electric motors, are being incorporated into the Fort McCoy transportation motor pool motor fleet.

Chris Brown, TMP supervisor, said LSEV vehicles are being provided as part of government plans to save money and energy by replacing some gas-powered passenger cars and small trucks with electric vehicles at all Army installations and selected other federal government organizations. The Fort McCoy fleet includes four passenger-type sedan vehicles and four cargo-type truck vehicles that run exclusively on electric power.

The vehicles have a top speed of about 25-30 mph and are made by the Columbia ParCar Corporation of Reedsburg, Wis. Brown said the vehicles are smaller than their gasoline counterparts and will be used exclusively for transportation needs in the cantonment area.

Initially, the LSEV sedans were issued to the Directorate of Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation Lodging, the McCoy Public Works Joint Venture Environmental Department for the Re-Use-It Store, the Directorate of Information Management (Network Enterprise Center), and the Directorate of Logistics Residual Efficient Organization.

The pickups were issued to DFMWR McCoy's, the DOL Supply Fuel Point, the McCoy Public Works Joint Venture Environmental Department and the DOL Troop Issue Support Branch.

"The vehicles have the basic accessories, such as a heater, windshield wipers, seat belts and cargo areas, but don't have air conditioning," Brown said. "They need to be plugged into a regular power source - the cord looks like a regular commercial power cord - when they're not being used. The company told us there wouldn't be any problems using them in cold weather."

Al Brueggen, chief of Fort McCoy DFMWR Lodging, said his organization was issued one of the electrically powered sedans. The vehicle slowly is being incorporated into use. The smaller heater may discourage usage in the coldest temperatures, Brueggen said.

"The vehicle rides a bit rough in comparison to a regular vehicle, but it will be great for getting us around post," Brueggen said. "It will be great to use during the spring, summer and fall months."

Michelle Hanson, the McCoy Public Works Joint Venture property administrator, said her organization was issued a sedan and a cargo truck. As of late December, the sedan was used to support the installation's Re-Use-It Store operations and was working well in cold weather.

"We've only had the vehicles for about two weeks, and so far they are meeting all of our needs," Hanson said. "The sedan is holding its charge and working fine so far."

Brown said the vehicles can be plugged into any electric outlet so they could be recharged at a different location, if available, than the home building if they were being used to run an errand around post, for example.

The vehicles' rechargeable batteries, which are located under the seats, also don't have a memory so they can be plugged in and recharged any time the vehicle is not in use.

"The vehicles are very environmentally friendly and do not have carbon emissions," Brown said. "Electric cars may be the wave of the future."

Page last updated Fri July 22nd, 2011 at 12:16