Renamed Partnership to Push Automotive Technologies Forward

U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu announced the U.S. DRIVE -- Driving Research and Innovation for Vehicle efficiency and Energy sustainability -- partnership on May 19. Its companion program is the 21st Century Truck Partnership.

U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu announced a new name for a partnership with industry on May 19. U.S. DRIVE, which stands for Driving Research and Innovation for Vehicle efficiency and Energy sustainability, formerly was known as the FreedomCAR and Fuel Partnership. Like the existing 21st Century Truck Partnership about trucks and buses, this one is intended to speed the development of energy-efficient technologies for cars and light trucks and the infrastructure -- such as batteries, electric-drive components, advanced combustion engines, lightweight materials, and fuel cells and hydrogen technologies -- needed to support their widespread use.

Technical experts from DOE, national laboratories, the auto industry, and the energy sector will collaborate to identify critical R&D needs, develop technical targets, and evaluate advanced vehicle and energy infrastructure technologies.

"Government-industry partnerships like U.S. DRIVE can quicken the pace at which affordable, fuel-efficient vehicles reach and succeed in the commercial market," Chu said. "By bringing together the best and brightest in government and the automobile, electric utility, and fuels industries, we can develop promising, innovative technologies that move rapidly from the lab into cars on the road, along with the infrastructure to support them."

The announcement included two new members: the Electric Power Research Institute and Tesla Motors. The list of partners includes:

  • Auto industry - United States Council for Automotive Research LLC (the collaborative research company for Chrysler Group LLC, Ford Motor Company, and General Motors), Tesla Motors
  • Energy industry - BP America, Chevron Corporation, ConocoPhillips, ExxonMobil Corporation, and Shell Oil Products US
  • Electric utility industry - DTE Energy, Southern California Edison, and the Electric Power Research Institute

For more information about U.S. DRIVE, visit the Research Partnerships page on the Vehicle Technologies Program website.

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