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Just as it offers a variety of beverage flavors, the Coca-Cola company dabbles in many gasoline alternatives for its truck fleet, from flex-fuel to hybrids. Today, the Sacramento Coca-Cola Bottling Company started leasing a Nissan X-Trail hydrogen fuel cell vehicle, the first such lease in North America. The company will lease the vehicle for one year, but has the option to extend that for another two years. Sacramento is one of the locations targeted by the California Fuel Cell Partnership for early H2 refueling infrastructure and already has three stations in the vicinity (it's also the home of the CaFCP). Coke will use the FCV for sales calls and public events to promote Coke Zero (zero – get it?). Read our first drive take on the X-Trail FCV here.


[Source: Nissan North America]

PRESS RELEASE:

Nissan Announces First Fuel Cell Vehicle Lease in North America; 'Coca-Cola Zero(R)' X-Trail FCV Promotes Zero Emissions


SACRAMENTO, Calif., Nov. 24 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Nissan North America, Inc. (NNA) today announced the lease of a X-TRAIL Fuel Cell Vehicle (FCV) to Sacramento Coca-Cola Bottling Co., Inc. Nissan, which began development of fuel cell vehicle technology in 1996, has previously used FCVs in demonstration fleets in Japan and in California through the California Fuel Cell Partnership (CaFCP), but this is Nissan's first commercial FCV lease in North America. The Sacramento Coca-Cola lease is for one year, with an option for two additional years.

"Sacramento already has the beginning of a hydrogen infrastructure in place, and Sacramento Coca-Cola has a track record of utilizing low emissions cars, so the two companies share a green philosophy as well as a common love of things 'zero'," said Eric Nozier, vice president, Corporate Planning, NNA

The zero emissions X-TRAIL FCV is being used by the bottler for sales calls and public events in the Sacramento area in promotion of its Coca-Cola Zero® soft drink. "This is a big step in furthering our commitment to environmental sustainability," said Bob Brown, executive vice president of Sacramento Coca-Cola. "We are really excited about the promise of fuel cell technology."

Nissan's comprehensive fuel cell research and development program is part of a range of eco-friendly technologies -- including FCVs, electric vehicles, hybrid and improved internal combustion engines -- being pursued under the Nissan Green Program 2010, a plan focused on developing new technologies, products and services leading to real-world reductions in CO2 emissions, cleaner emissions and expanded recycling of resources.

The Nissan X-TRAIL FCV is based on the X-TRAIL SUV, which is available in Mexico, Japan and Europe. It is fitted with a Nissan-developed compact fuel cell stack, a compact Lithium-ion battery and a high-pressure hydrogen storage cylinder. Performance is close to that of a similarly sized internal combustion engine-based vehicle. Versions of this generation X-TRAIL FCV are capable of speeds in excess of 95 miles per hour, with a cruising range of up to 300 miles.

Sacramento-based Nissan X-TRAIL FCVs have already logged nearly 300,000 miles in ongoing internal tests, with one vehicle very close to the 100,000-mile mark. "The future of sustainable mobility will depend on the simultaneous development of many technologies. Test programs like Sacramento Coca-Cola X-TRAIL FCV lease help us keep our momentum going in this arena, even as we're getting ready to roll out the new Nissan LEAF electric vehicle in the next year," said Nozier.

In addition to the current generation X-TRAIL FCV, Nissan earlier this year announced testing of a next-generation fuel cell stack that is 25 percent smaller than the current model and will be less expensive to build. Nissan North America recently opened a new Fuel Cell Laboratory at the Nissan Technical Center in Farmington Hills, Mich. The new lab will support other global Nissan research centers and will work with suppliers and universities on various related fuel cell projects.

"Any 5th grade math student can tell you that 0+0+0=0, yet in this case zero (carbs) plus zero (calories) plus zero (emissions) adds up to a great partnership and a great way to promote both the Nissan and Coca-Cola Zero® brands," added Nozier.

"We are delighted to have this opportunity to team up with Nissan to employ zero-emissions technology in a real life business setting," said Don Quinn, Director of Operations for Sacramento Coca-Cola. "What better way to showcase zero-emissions technology than with North America's most popular new zero-calorie soft drink?"

For more information on Nissan Green 2010 activities, please go to www.nissan-global.com/EN/ENVIRONMENT/GREENPROGRAM_2010

About Nissan North America

In North America, Nissan's operations include automotive styling, engineering, consumer and corporate financing, sales and marketing, distribution and manufacturing. Nissan is dedicated to improving the environment under the Nissan Green Program 2010, whose key priorities are reducing CO2 emissions, cutting other emissions and increasing recycling. More information on Nissan in North America and the complete line of Nissan and Infiniti vehicles can be found online at www.NissanUSA.com and www.infinitiusa.com.

About Sacramento Coca-Cola Bottling Co., Inc.

Sacramento Coca-Cola Bottling Co., Inc. is an independent bottler and distributor of products of The Coca-Cola Company, serving all or parts of nine counties in the Sacramento and Modesto areas. Founded by Nathan Sellers in 1927, the company has remained in the Sellers family for more than 80 years and is now the ninth largest Coca-Cola bottler in the nation.

"Coca-Cola Zero" is a registered trademark of The Coca-Cola Company
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