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Protean Electric claims its in-wheel motors, when installed in a diesel Vauxhall Vivaro, boosted the van's fuel economy by some 300 percent (!) in European drive-cycle tests.

Emerald Automotive delivery van – Click above to watch video after the jump

The University of Alberta has purchased four hybrid electric delivery vans from Azure Dynamics to use for mail deliveries around the campus. The four vehicles will be running a route that includes 100 buildings and 1,000 pickups and deliveries every day. The Balance hybrid from Azure Dynamics uses an electric motor mounted halfway along the drive shaft to provide electric assist, low speed electric only drive and regenerative braking capability. An integrated starter/generator provides automatic

Many reports forecast that hybrid powertrains will be present in all car segments in the coming years. But not much has been said about using hybrid powertrains in minivans (a few things here and there, but that's it). Since soccer moms (and dads!) could surely use savings at the pump, a rumor on Carscoop comes as a nice surprise: Toyota is planning a minivan that uses the Prius platform. Toyota offers a few compact minivans in Japan and has a very competent compact-size minivan called the Vers

FedEx has already managed to rack up over two million miles in its fleet of hybrid delivery vehicles, and will now be further padding that number thanks to ten additional diesel hybrid vans from Iveco for use in Europe. The vans officially began their duty in Milan and Turin, Italy on July 10th. While we are most interested in the CO2 emissions savings, FedEx will surely enjoy the corresponding 30-percent reduction in fuel use.

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