DaimlerChrysler to Partner with NextEnergy, Inc., in Detroit on Biodiesel Research and Development

DaimlerChrysler to Partner with NextEnergy, Inc., in Detroit on Biodiesel Research and Development

Auburn Hills, Mich., Sep 29, 2005 –
Research Will Advance Nation’s Rapidly-Growing Biodiesel Industry, Promote Use of Clean, Renewable Fuel Made from U.S. Farm Products
Biodiesel Industries, Nation’s Largest Biodiesel Refiner, to Join Partnership with New Detroit Facility
DaimlerChrysler ‘Brownfield’ Sites to Produce Feedstock for Research Programs
Jeep® Liberty CRD diesel, factory-fueled with biodiesel, sets monthly sales record
DaimlerChrysler, a national leader in promoting use of clean, renewable biodiesel fuel, will collaborate with Detroit-based NextEnergy, Inc., and Biodiesel Industries, Inc., in developing advanced renewable fuels for the future.

The partners will focus on research targeting biodiesel fuel development and technical innovation, as well as the development and refinement of industry standards for the rapidly-growing biodiesel industry.

NextEnergy, located in Detroit’s TechTown entrepreneurial community, is a non-profit organization created by the State of Michigan to advance the Alternative Energy Technology industry in Michigan. The organization will host a Grand Opening of the NextEnergy Center facility and announce research programs in biodiesel on Sept. 29.

Biodiesel Industries, headquartered in Santa Barbara, California, claims the largest network of biodiesel production facilities in the nation. The company will announce a major new facility to be located in Detroit during the Sept. 29 event.

DaimlerChrysler has promoted use of biodiesel fuel nationally with the launch of the Jeep® Liberty CRD diesel, the first mid-sized SUV with a diesel powertrain in the U.S. market. Every Jeep Liberty CRD leaving the factory in Toledo, Ohio, is fueled with B5, 5 percent biodiesel made with soybeans grown and refined in Ohio.

The Liberty CRD will register its highest monthly sales during September, with more than 1,200 units sold nationwide. Liberty CRD has already exceeded initial estimates for first-year sales, with more than 6,300 sold; more than 10,500 units have been built and shipped to dealers.

To support the research programs at NextEnergy, DaimlerChrysler will commit currently unused land at a former SuperFund environmental site for use in producing soybeans, and perhaps other oil-bearing crops, for use in NextEnergy research programs.

“DaimlerChrysler is excited to be partnering with NextEnergy is this important research that will not only help diversify Michigan’s economy, but also strengthen the U.S. economy by reducing our reliance on oil,” said Deborah Morrissett, Vice President – Regulatory Affairs at DaimlerChrysler.

DaimlerChrysler is working cooperatively with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in identifying and developing sites for use in producing crops for the NextEnergy research. The goal is to include the properties in EPA’s “Return to Use Program” designed to put currently under-utilized former SuperFund sites back into productive use.

Morrissett said that DaimlerChrysler is actively developing a broad range of technologies to reduce dependence on oil and protect the environment.

More efficient engines and transmissions for today’s vehicles, such as the Multiple Displacement System in the HEMI engine that improves fuel economy up to 20 percent.
Clean, powerful diesel vehicles that improve fuel economy an average of 30 percent.
Hybrid vehicles featuring a unique two-mode powertrain that will achieve up to 25 percent improvement in fuel economy.
All-electric vehicles. GEM neighborhood electric vehicles are the nation’s leader.
Increased use of clean, renewable fuels (ethanol and biodiesel) produced in the United States.
Fuel cell vehicles for the future. DaimlerChrysler fuel cell vehicles have logged more than 1 million miles in real-world use.
“The events of recent weeks have served to underscore the need to continue this work. The research being done by NextEnergy will make a significant contribution to our efforts,” Morrissett said.

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